SVB, the parent of Silicon Valley Bank, has announced the appointment of Tosh Ernest as its head of Access to Innovation.
According to Yahoo Finance, the initiative focuses on advancing “women, Black and Latino individuals” to positions of influence in the finance industry. Ernest will work to expand the SVB Access to Innovation program and broaden opportunities for SVB and its core businesses, Silicon Valley Bank, SVB Capital, and SVB Securities.
SVB President and Chief Executive Officer Greg Becker said in a statement that Ernest is the right woman for the job.
“I’m encouraged by the greater attention given to issues of inequity in the innovation sector in recent years — but there is much more work to be done,” Becker said, according to Yahoo.
“We’re thrilled to have Tosh’s [diversity, equity, and inclusion] expertise and executive leadership usher our Access to Innovation program into its next era, increasing the impact we’re able to have.”
Ernest joins SVB after more than a decade with JPMorgan Chase, where the University of Reading graduate founded the wealth division of the Advancing Black Pathways, a global initiative focused on closing the racial wealth gap. She’s also held roles at consulting firms Navigant, Capco, and Accenture, specializing in post-merger and acquisition systems integration.
Ernest credited SVB for creating educational and economic opportunities for people of all colors, saying it’s one of the reasons she joined the bank.
“SVB’s commitment to improve diversity, equity, and inclusion extends beyond its own walls to its entire sphere of influence. SVB’s Access to Innovation team has done tremendous work to creatively leverage the company’s vast network to create and amplify educational, employment, and funding pathways,” Ernest said in a statement.
“I’m excited to bring my experience and passion to SVB and the innovation economy to continue to grow and evolve this important work.”