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I feel compelled to reach out to you in light of the racial and social disharmony that is now gripping communities throughout our nation. This is not a political statement, but it is a stand: In moments like these, we must reflect on where we are, what we have done well, and what we can do to improve our firm, our communities, and our nation.

From my very first week at First Manhattan, Bob Gottesman has encouraged me to think inclusively as we work to build and enhance our team, our business, and our culture. Thus, we set out with the goal of casting a wide net in our search for talent and, not surprisingly, we have attracted a diverse set of exceptional and motivated individuals who, along with our long-tenured colleagues, make important contributions every day.

I know there is always more work to be done at our own firm and in the world at large, and while recent events prompted me to share this message, these past few years have profoundly influenced my understanding of what it takes to build a great team. I’ve learned that diversity should not be thought of as an independent outcome, but rather as a necessity—not just because it is right, but also because it is good and makes us a stronger firm. Our ways of reacting to situations and processing information can be as varied as our life experiences and perspectives. In a collaborative environment that values this variety, our efforts together will more consistently result in better decisions for our firm, our clients, and our communities.

First Manhattan’s proud history and success is, in large part, based on collegiality and a culture of meritocracy. We carry those values forward with us as pillars and add diversity as something we continually strive for.



Zachary A. Wydra
Chief Executive Officer