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Fidelity exec Pamela Everhart shapes corporate profile while underwriting social justice

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Fidelity exec Pamela Everhart shapes corporate profile while underwriting social justice
Fidelity executive Pamela Everhart. PHOTO: COURTESY PAMELA EVERHART

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For close to 30 years, Pamela Everhart has helped shape the public profile of Fidelity Investments, one of the largest privately held companies in the nation.

Currently serving as Head of Regional Public Affairs, Inclusion, and Impact, Everhart oversees the Boston-based company’s ties with state and local governments as well as communities touched by the powerhouse investment firm through its $12.6 trillion in assets under management.

Now headed by Abigail P. Johnson, the daughter of former Chairman and CEO Edward Johnson III, Fidelity reported a record $28.2 billion in revenues, 74,000 employees in 11 nations and 50 million worldwide clients in 2023. The firm’s innovative work in mutual funds has long driven its growth.

While well known in business and political circles for her work with Fidelity, Everhart is also known for joining with 19 other Black and brown Massachusetts executives to launch the New Commonwealth Racial Equity and Social Justice Fund. The social investment initiative, pulled together in the wake of George Floyd’s murder, aims to “help drive transformative social changes to address systematic racism and racial inequality.”

“I believe the greatest way to achieve success is to first help others succeed,” says Everhart. “For me, that service starts in underserved communities, especially giving youth access to financial literacy to help move them toward whatever goals they have in life.”

Everhart’s commitment to promoting financial literacy within underbanked communities shines through such programs as Fidelity Financial Forward and In-School Learning Opportunities provided not only to students, but their families as well.

To Everhart, focusing on strong relationship with Fidelity’s home city has been a key part of her job. In 2022, Fidelity made a commitment to adding 500 employees to a wide range of departments within their Boston headquarters, which employs a total of 5,860 Bostonians.

I am humbled and honored to serve as a leader in this community,” says Everhart, a Harvard Law graduate who worked at the elite Ropes & Gray firm before joining Fidelity. “Throughout my life I have been encompassed by a cloud of tireless advocates who have championed others on multiple levels, both in the workplace and the community. Their examples of servant leadership fuel my passion to be of service to others and reinforces my belief that we all have the power to help change someone’s life.”

Fidelity has a long history of investment in local communities and individual-level financial advice and education, in addition to financial services for businesses, management firms, and institutions. Current programs for individuals and families include associate programs for employees and community members and in-school learning programs for public school students.

Fidelity Financial Forward, a digital platform that provides free access to financial education resources for students, teachers, and parents, is overseen by Everhart. Students who participate in the program gain an understanding of saving, investing, spending, and planning in the context of today’s changing economy, and are better prepared to make personal finance and investing decisions for their lives.

The company’s new initiatives include a pathway to higher education that allows students to graduate without acquiring debt, says Everhart, who has served on numerous community boards and was active in the political campaigns of President Barack Obama, Gov. Deval Patrick, and Kamala Harris when she was running for the U.S. Senate.

“At Fidelity, as part of our commitment to remove barriers impacting historically underserved populations, we offer Invest in My Education, a $250 million social impact initiative to help students graduate from college with little to no education debt,” says Everhart.

“This initiative combines student scholarships with ongoing wraparound support, including mentorship by Fidelity associates, internship guidance, financial education, the opportunity to leverage our social capital, and pathways to post-graduation employment. With a commitment of $250 million, Invest in My Education has the potential to transform the lives of up to 50,000 students and their families across five years.”

When it comes to investing for the future, Everhart has a simple message to those thinking about it. “The best day to start investing was yesterday,” says the University of Texas graduate. “The next day is today. Don’t be intimidated, you can invest with as little as $1 and watch it grow. Consistency and time are key.”