Thursday, November 15, 2018
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How Lauren Simmons Became The Only Black Woman at the NYSE  
By Faith Petrie, Sentinel Intern 
Published June 28, 2018

Trader Gordon Charlop, center, confers with colleague Lauren Simmons on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, Monday, May 7, 2018. U.S. stocks moved broadly higher in early trading Monday, adding to solid gains at the end of last week. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Hollywood movies like “The Wolf of Wall Street” give a theatrical glimpse into the what it is like to be a part of New York City’s Wall Street. It’s portrayed as busy, loud, and a bit of a boy’s club.

Lauren Simmons, the only full-time female stockbroker is changing that. At 23, Simmons works on the trading floor of the New York Stock Exchange and is the second African American woman to sign the book that contains the constitution for the New York Stock Exchange.

While her LinkedIn notes her past experience as everything from a sales manager at Saks Inc., a human resources intern at Nordstroms and a supervisor at Six Flags White Water, Simmons saw the transition to a stockbroker as a natural transition.

Lauren Simmons (courtesy photo)

“What I know is numbers are universal and it’s a universal language and because of that it only made sense to join the trading floor,” Simmons said to CGTN America.

Simmons graduated from Kennesaw State University in 2016 with a bachelor’s degree in genetics and networked with other alumni in New York in order to get a new job in the city. Although she was turned down for a job she had applied to, they offered her another job on the trading floor.

“They brought me down, I interviewed and it’s been a whirlwind eversince,” Simmons said.

With recent social movements like #MeToo, Simmons feels as though being in a majority men environment does not stop them from having transparent conversations about harassment.

“We are very open down here so if there is something that is inappropriate or you take a second look at I will call you out on it, other people will call you out on it,” Simmons said. “To women interested in joining a male dominated industry Simmons said that when people get out of their comfort zones “that’s where the growth and everything else comes into place.”

Categories: Business | Finance | National | News | News (Business) | News (Family)
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