New Initiative Launched By J.P. Morgan Hopes To Boost Generational Wealth For Black Americans

Exclusive: New Initiative Launched By J.P. Morgan Private Bank Hopes To Boost Generational Wealth For Black Americans

(Photo: Rawpixel)
In a new effort to boost generational wealth within the Black community,  J.P. Morgan Private Bank is launching Diverse Wealth Initiatives.
Plans call for a new team of bankers and wealth strategists from JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s private wealth management arm to engage and support the high and ultra-high net worth of people of color across America. The initial focus will be engaging and supporting Black families and individuals.

The team also eventually plans to further the private bank’s recruitment efforts for Black private bankers, focusing on hiring, internal support, and development resources. A private bank spokesperson says those hiring goals are still being worked out.

“Diverse Wealth Initiatives has been growing organically over the past two years, as our bankers across the country embarked on a grassroots effort to engage affluent people of color through conversation, experiences and content,” David Frame, U.S. CEO of J.P. Morgan Private Bank, stated in an exclusive announcement to Black Enterprise. “They recognized and responded to the need for a stronger connection with this community – they are now executing on that vision.”

Far left: Clinton Warren, an 18-year veteran of the firm, is the Head of Investments and Advice for J.P. Morgan Private Bank in Dallas.
Middle: Deb Langford, Head of Black Wealth Initiatives. Far Right: Jason Tinsley is the Michigan Market Manager for J.P. Morgan Private Bank, as well as Chairman of the JPMorgan Chase Michigan Leadership Team.

Diverse Wealth Initiatives is developing introduction events in five major major metros —  Los Angeles, San Francisco, New Orleans, Chicago, and Dallas – through the end of 2021. A national flagship event is in the works for 2022. Over the next three years, the private bank aims to connect its team and resources with Black individuals and families through the initiative in all 50 U.S. markets where it operates.

The private bank unit of the nation’s largest bank had assets of $1.6 trillion globally as of the first quarter of 2021. Along with targeting the very affluent, the arm works with families, family offices, business owners, endowments, and foundations. The bank reports the unit leverages global capabilities in investing, philanthropic giving, family office management, credit, and estate planning among its offerings. It offers financial advice and strategies to help wealthy clients and their families plan, invest, and borrow. The bank reports private bank clients to have investable assets from approximately $5 million into the hundreds of millions and billions of dollars.

 The drive is needed to help bolster prosperity for Blacks. Consider a massive $290 billion would be created in Black wealth reportedly if the revenue gap between what Black-owned and white-owned businesses generate were equal.  A new study reveals only an estimated 2% of Black households, or about 340,000 families, have a net worth of over $1 million. Conversely, over one in every seven White households have eclipsed the million-dollar mark.

The bank reports the initiative’s team will be led by Private Bank Managing Directors Jason Tinsley and Clinton Warren, who oversees more than a combined $50 billion in client assets.

Warren told Black Enterprise via email the genesis for the initiative began in 2019 in some of the bank’s markets, among Black bankers who started developing events focused on connecting with intimate groups of our Black clients and prospects. He added bankers at JP Morgan realized there was an appetite and an interest to have culturally thoughtful events and conversations about building and retaining wealth.

“When the pandemic hit, we saw the opportunity to take this national. All of a sudden, we were having Zoom events with 200 guests. We saw people of similar backgrounds in a Zoom together feeling comfortable and realizing that they have shared experiences.”

Tinsley reflected on why the private bank is doing the initiative now and what is the opportunity.

“We recognized a need and saw a space where we weren’t doing all we could to support and engage with this community,” Tinsley says. “Available data suggest that once black individuals achieve wealth there is one third less likely that they will pass that wealth on to the next generation, that is a problem we want to solve. Diverse Wealth Initiatives will focus on building and maintaining Black wealth for generations to come and making the Private Bank the employer of choice for Black private bankers.”

Commenting on the Diverse Wealth Initiatives’ goals, Warren told Black Enterprise via email:  “There has been a lack of consistent effort by banks in being accessible, open and intentional around bringing wealth advice to affluent and accomplished members of the Black community to address this, we will cultivate content and curate events for specific groups that may not have felt like this level of wealth guidance was for them.”

So, what returns, or other benefits, could high net worth Black individuals get if they work or invest with the private bank?

An 18-year veteran of the firm,  Warren is the Head of Investments and Advice for J.P. Morgan Private Bank in Dallas. Along with co-leading Diverse Wealth Initiatives, the bank report he leads a team of investment specialists that deliver guidance on portfolio construction, asset allocation, and manager selection across both public and private markets, overseeing more than $40 billion in client assets.  He offered some comments on the new initiative.

He says JPMorgan Chase is helping to educate and serve all families regardless of net worth.  He added it will be laser-focused on increasing generational wealth within the Black community. “Our goal is to create access to information, events, networks, and a financial platform which should minimize this gap,” he says.

Warren noted at this level of wealth, investing is only one variable that leads to generational wealth. He says building trust, having access to holistic financial guidance, multiple networks, proactive banking relationships instead of transactional ones – leads to better financial outcomes and returns.  Having a plan that includes modeling, estate planning, strategic philanthropic endeavors, strategic lending, and investments increases the probability of successful outcomes.

“The benefit is access to content, relationships, a global network, events and a platform that will put their family in a place to maximize the intent of their wealth,'” he says.

The Michigan Market Manager for J.P. Morgan Private Bank, Tinsley also is Chairman of the JPMorgan Chase Michigan Leadership Team. Along with co-leading the initiative, he manages a professional team that delivers guidance across investing, philanthropy, family office management, credit, fiduciary, and advisory services.  He oversees more than $14 billion in client assets. He has spent nearly two decades at JPMorgan Chase, working across community, business, and private banking.   He also shared on the initiative.

“In our work with clients, we have seen that Black clients tend to be more conservative with their wealth, and that can deteriorate their opportunity to build generational wealth,” Tinsley says. “Because of this, we help clients clearly define money for liquidity, lifestyle, legacy, and perpetual growth.”

He added within the Private Bank, takes the conversation beyond exposure to capital markets and now allows it to open doors to more approaches in building wealth, like using lending as a tax efficient tool or utilizing trust and estate planning.

To help establish and build the effort, Deb Langford has joined the private bank as the Head of Black Wealth Initiatives.

She most recently led Business Development for JPMorgan Chase’s Advancing Black Pathways (ABP), an initiative launched in 2019 that focuses the firm’s resources on three key areas where there are racial and economic disparities that create barriers to long-term financial success: education, careers and wealth.

“For JPMorgan Chase, Diverse Wealth Initiatives is a natural extension of our existing investments in the Black community in America,” she told Black Enterprise by email.