Introduce yourself to our audience. Tell us who you are and what you are currently focused on.
My name is Ann Bettendorf Freeman and I’m a Financial Advisor with the Bettendorf Group at Morgan Stanley. I have been passionate about the stock market since early childhood and had the privilege of learning about the financial services industry from my father. My financial services career has taken exciting turns and loop de loops over the years, and I have loved every second of it! I have an amazing husband and four awesome children and really treasure spending my free time with family and friends. I currently lead philanthropy efforts for the Ellevate Chicago Chapter and am involved with many civic organizations that hold special meaning for me such as the Nova Network for women who attended women’s colleges.
Tell us about your favorite Ellevate Network memory or success story. Why are you a member?
One of my all-time favorite Ellevate memories was hosting the Chicago Chapter screening of RBG – the Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg documentary. I collaborated with a dear friend and colleague at McDermott Will & Emery Law Firm on the program, and we co-hosted over 100 women for an evening of networking, the screening, and a panel discussion featuring Kristy Wallace, CEO of Ellevate! The event was also special because I brought my tween daughter and her friend along and they couldn’t stop talking about the event afterwards. Ellevate holds special meaning for me because of the opportunity to mentor and network with so many dynamic women.
How would you define your professional mission?
My professional mission is creating value for my clients and my colleagues. I have been in the financial services industry for over 25 years and appreciate every opportunity and challenge I’ve encountered in my career.
What is the most rewarding part of your job?
I am passionate about helping women make better financial decisions at any stage of life. This is one of the reasons I have been a member of Ellevate for over 15 years. We live in a time when women have the most opportunities at their fingertips than any other time in history!
What legacy do you hope to leave through your work?
I want my children to see that women can balance family with a career that they love and understand that family and career are not mutually exclusive.
What would you say your personal superpower is?
I am an incredibly strategic thinker. Where others see complexity, I see patterns. I am also an activator in that I like to translate ideas into action. These superpowers have positioned me as a trusted problem solver for my clients and colleagues.
What does success look like to you?
I have achieved my definition of success in that I have a wonderful family and have an exciting career in a field that I love.
What advice would you offer future leading ladies wishing to break into your industry?
Build a network of advisers, mentors and peers. My industry is very relationship-driven and it’s important to develop bonds with people in your organization and your community early and often.
What is the best career advice you ever received?
“The most important thing you have in this business is your reputation.” That’s what my dad, Frank Bettendorf, always told me, my brother, and our colleagues.
What is one piece of advice you’d offer working moms?
You can have it all, just not at the same time. Being a working mom involves prioritization and tradeoffs as well as great communication with your family members.
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