“Arise. Shine. Be strong and be courageous. You are mightier than you think. You are braver than you realize.”
That’s the career mantra recommended by the woman responsible for managing
Director of risk parity, currency hedging, and strategic implementation,
“I hope to cultivate a culture that is inviting for women to pursue their career in the investment industry,” Oh said. “There are so many smart and competent women of all ages who do not know about this industry as an option.”
A recent inductee of
CPBJ: What keeps you engaged in the finance industry?
Oh: It’s knowing that my purpose and role can lead to the greater good. When I was a student, I found that the power of accounting was that it unlocked the knowledge needed for the business to make decisions.One cannot manage what one does not measure.I remained engaged in the accounting field because I knew I was serving a vital business purpose.
Inaccurate or incomplete financial information will lead to business failures for the owners and the stakeholders. Investors use financial information as the main component for evaluating the various financial markets in which we invest.The growth of PSERS’ investments deployed in these financial markets results in a secure retirement for our public school employee members. It is truly a humbling career to be an investor as the market tells you each day how well you are doing in precise quantitative terms.
What are some of the key lessons you’ve learned throughout your career that helped you reach your current role at PSERS?
Oh: Relentless gratitude.I know that I would not be where I am today all by myself.I thank Jesus, as He has been with me every step of the way leading, guiding and protecting me.I am thankful to call this blessed nation my home.The
Do not fear.Be strong and courageous. If proposing an unconventional approach will serve the purpose of your company better over the long-term, do not be afraid to be different from your peers.I have been blessed to have been given opportunities to recommend and implement innovative investment strategies for PSERS.These have grown to become large contributors to make PSERS’ investment portfolio less risky while at the same time increasing returns. These unconventional strategies also led to a greater proportion of assets to be managed internally rather than given to external money managers.
You're passionate about bringing more women into the finance industry. How are you pushing for change? What do you hope to change as a leader in the industry?
Oh: Gender diversity is of critical importance to our profession.What we do each day is incredibly complex and challenging.Managing trillions of dollars as an industry is a task beyond words.Less than 10 percent of the front-line money managers are women.I believe women bring different perspectives.We simply see and do things differently. That diversifying perspective is very valuable for our industry.
I believe women and men working side-by-side can bring forth much more robust investment processes with better risk management.It has not been easy being the only woman investor here at PSERS for majority of the 24 years that I have been at PSERS, but I remain hopeful.
My hope is that the investment industry realizes the great value women investors can add and starts making an intentional effort to close the gender and pay gaps, especially at the senior level. I believe this is one of the most important initiatives CEOs can implement to increase and sustain a company’s performance over the long-term.Many companies have awakened to embrace this, and there is a momentum to bring this to a reality.My hope is to make gender diversity a priority for the investment industry