Women Investment Professionals (WIP) began as a small, loosely knit group of about 15 women who were investment professionals on the institutional side of the business. Current Women Investment Professionals members, Joanne Hickman and Carla Straeten, were the co-founders of the organization established in 1996. Early members found that creating networking opportunities for themselves helped them in exchanging ideas and creating more personal connections within the industry. Where appropriate, they shared business ideas and opportunities as they arose. As word spread and events began to attract more participants, the group decided to become incorporated as Women Investment Professionals in 2000.
Today, WIP Chicago is a non-profit organization that provides a forum for networking and professional development for women involved in institutional investing, including plan sponsors, investment managers, consultants, accountants and attorneys. WIP achieves this objective through a variety of activities, including quarterly events, committee involvement, philanthropic initiatives, its website and newsletter. WIP provides members access to information on job opportunities within the industry by posting positions on its website.