Bringing the Stock Market to Life: BNY Mellon Invests It Forward

At a recent meeting in midtown Manhattan, five different  groups presented snapshots of their portfolios to a panel of BNY Mellon portfolio managers and analysts. After each presentation, the panelists queried the speakers on the rationale for their investment strategy, asking them to explain their research process and risk tolerance.

A team of students presented their portfolio to a panel of BNY Mellon portfolio managers and analysts, including Bryan Cass, Carol Noel, Tim Barker, Jessica Rigby and Kris Carney.

Who were the presenters? They were seventh and eighth grade students from Franklin Middle School in New Jersey. The presentations were part of the Invest It Forward program developed and launched in 2014 by the SIFMA Foundation. Invest It Forward is an industry-wide financial education and capital markets literacy campaign convening hundreds of financial firms committed to giving young Americans a solid understanding of the capital markets system and the invaluable tools to achieve their dreams.

BNY Mellon is a long-time supporter of the SIFMA Foundation and a champion of financial education. “The company has been very active with the SIFMA Foundation on multiple fronts,” said Sean Grace, Team Leader and Senior Portfolio Manager in Wealth Management.  “In addition to hosting on-site office visits like this, we’ve served as judges in the SIFMA Foundation essay competition, InvestWrite, and as guest speakers in the classroom. There are ample ways to get involved.”

Doris Meister, President – U.S. Markets Tri-State, greeted the students when they arrived. The day’s agenda also included an investment outlook by Jeffrey Mortimer, Director of Investment Strategy, and presentation by Tom Lee, Technology Analyst.

Jeffrey Mortimer, Director of Investment Strategy, BNY Mellon

Doris Meister, President – U.S. Markets Tri-State, BNY Mellon, addresses the class.

“I cannot thank you enough for all you have done for my students to bring the stock market to life for them,” said Deborah Gadek, the students’ teacher. “We are a Title 1 school, sobringing speakers to our school to present and meet our students — and arranging this once in a lifetime opportunity at BNY Mellon — gave many of them the opportunity to see what the world holds for them if they work hard and continue to pursue their education.  As you observed, many of them had not yet seen the New York skyline.”

Admiring the view. One student received a prize for naming the tallest building in this picture.

Volunteer to Invest It Forward: The SIFMA Foundation challenges you and your colleagues to Invest It Forward from April 1 – April 30.  In recognition of Financial Literacy month, we will be recognizing the top registering firms to help raise awareness of the industry’s commitment to financial and capital markets education and your firm’s partnership locally and nationally. Volunteer today.

Sean Grace, Team Leader and Senior Portfolio Manager in Wealth Management, and Stock Market Game Teacher Debi Gadek.

No shortage of questions for the experts.


Winner of the SIFMA Foundation’s InvestWrite competition, Arnav Tolat, took studious notes throughout the presentations. “I want to come here every day!” said a classmate.

About the SIFMA Foundation: The SIFMA Foundation is dedicated to fostering knowledge and understanding of the financial markets for individuals of all backgrounds. Drawing on the support and expertise of the financial industry, the SIFMA Foundation provides financial education programs and tools that strengthen economic opportunity across communities and increase individuals’ awareness of and access to the benefits of the global marketplace. The SIFMA Foundation, an affiliated organization of SIFMA, is an independent 501(c)3 educational organization. Learn more.