William Huston, AIF®, AIFA®

Black Financial Advisors: African American Finance Experts Closing the Wealth Gap

William Huston, AIF®, AIFA®

William Huston, AIF®, AIFA®

Black Financial Advisors: African American Finance Experts Closing the Wealth Gap

The current American drive to address the racial wealth gap continues to gather momentum and Black financial advisors have proven to be key ingredients for success in this mission. They remain the number one financial coach and support for African Americans.

room of african american financial advisors

Black financial advisors, though sometimes get underrated in the financial services industry, continue to make strides in creating wealth for many members of the Black community. These African American finance experts are uniquely positioned to help close the wealth gap that exists between Black and White Americans.

Key Takeaways
  • Black financial advisors have the background, vision and skillset to close the wealth gap between Black and White demographics
  • It is important for African Americans to find and work with Black financial advisors
  • A few Black American have paved the way for wealth creation among African Americans and others have received the torch from them
  • There are networks for Black financial advisors which provide resources to help them better serve the Black community

The contents of this article are for educational purposes only. They are not intended to serve as a source of professional financial advice. Find experts on real estate, financial planning and wealth management here. More on disclaimer here.

A Wide Wealth Gap

According to a 2020 study by the National Bureau of Economic Research, the median wealth of white households is ten times higher than the median wealth of Black households. This gap can be attributed to systemic inequalities and discrimination, including limited access to financial resources, employment discrimination, and housing discrimination.

Why Finding a Black Financial Advisor Matters for African Americans

African Americans face unique challenges in building wealth and planning for retirement due to the racial wealth gap and systemic discrimination. This is why finding a Black financial advisor matters for African Americans.

african american financial advisor
Shared Background

Black financial advisors have a deep understanding of the unique financial challenges faced by African Americans, including the wealth gap, income inequality, and discrimination. They also have firsthand experience navigating these challenges and can offer advice and strategies that reflect this experience.


Moreover, a Black financial advisor can help provide representation and create a sense of comfort and trust for African American clients. They understand the cultural nuances and shared experiences of the Black community and can tailor their advice to better meet the needs of their clients.

In general, finding a Black financial advisor can provide a valuable advantage for African Americans in building wealth and planning for a secure retirement. By working with an advisor who understands their unique challenges and can offer tailored advice, African Americans can take control of their financial future.

Benefits of Working with Black Financial Advisors

Black financial advisors can help their clients navigate these challenges and build wealth over time. They can provide financial education and guidance to help their clients understand the importance of saving and investing, and they can help their clients develop strategies for managing debt and building credit.

Black financial advisors
Access to Investment Opportunities

Black financial advisors can provide access to investment opportunities and financial products that are specifically designed for Black investors. For example, some Black financial advisors specialize in impact investing, which focuses on investing in companies and organizations that have a positive social and environmental impact.

Other Black financial advisors may focus on community development investing, which supports the development of underserved communities through investments in affordable housing, small business development, and infrastructure projects.

Guidance on Real Estate

Black financial advisors can also provide guidance on homeownership, which is one of the most significant ways to build wealth. However, Black Americans have historically faced obstacles in accessing affordable housing, including redlining and discriminatory lending practices. Black financial advisors can help their clients navigate these challenges and develop strategies for achieving homeownership, such as accessing down payment assistance programs and working with lenders who prioritize diversity and inclusion.

Mentoring and Inspiration

Furthermore, Black financial advisors can serve as role models and mentors, inspiring the next generation of Black financial professionals and helping to build a more diverse and inclusive industry. By promoting greater representation and inclusion in the financial industry, we can help to break down barriers and create more opportunities for Black Americans to build wealth and achieve financial security.

Closing the Wealth Gap

Black financial advisors are essential players in closing the wealth gap that exists between Black and white Americans. They provide valuable financial guidance and support to their clients, and they can help build a more equitable financial system.

Conclusively, by providing tailored guidance and advocacy for their clients, Black financial advisors can help to break down systemic barriers and build a more equitable and inclusive financial system. It's essential to support and promote the work of Black financial advisors to ensure that all members of the Black community have access to the resources and support they need to achieve their financial goals.

African American Pioneers in Financial Advisory

Let's take a brief look at a few Black certified financial professionals who led or now lead the way in closing the wealth gap:

Willian Huston
William Huston - Black Financial Advisor

As the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Bay Street Capital Holdings, William holds dual accreditations as an Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF®) and an Accredited Investment Fiduciary Analyst (AIFA®). The firm serves as a fiduciary for custom long-only public equity portfolios. William's financial advisory services cater not only to young athletes but also to those at different stages of their career, providing objective services to help them make informed financial decisions.

At Bay Street, William is responsible for overseeing investment strategy, capital formation, and investor relations, and has been recognized for his financial expertise by investopedia.com, ranking among the top 100 financial advisors in 2021 and 2022. His company, Bay Street, is also recognized by wealthmanagement.com, ranking 2nd among 900 asset management firms. William is one of the most down to earth advisors and his clients find it easy to connect with him. You can reach him here.

Ekenna Anya Gafu
Ekenna Anya - Black Certified Financial Planner

Ekenna is a seasoned financial professional with over five years of experience in the brokerage industry. He specializes in providing comprehensive financial planning services that help clients achieve their financial independence. With certifications as a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) and an Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS), Ekenna is well-equipped to generate effective financial plans, including trustworthy retirement plans, that turn his clients' wishes into results.

One area where Ekenna particularly stands out is his ability to serve as a unique financial advisor to celebrities, leveraging his expertise to help them manage their finances and build long-term wealth. Whether working with individuals or organizations, Ekenna is committed to providing personalized service and expert guidance that helps his clients navigate the complex world of finance with confidence and ease.

LeCount Davis
LeCount Davis - First Black Certified Financial Planner

LeCount R. Davis, Sr. was the first African American to earn the Certified Financial Planning designation granted by the College for Financial Planning in Denver, Colorado. He is a licensee of the Certified Planner Board of Standards and has extensive experience in accounting, tax planning, financial planning, and financial management and investment consulting.

Mr. Davis has worked in both the public and private sectors, including several years as a Senior Consultant with a Washington, DC-based CPA firm, and as Assistant Director of Finance for an international labor organization, concentrating in the Caribbean and South America.

In 1970, Mr. Davis founded his own consulting firm specializing in tax and financial planning, small business management, financial management and investment consulting. His clients include national organizations, international labor unions, pension funds, individuals, small businesses, religious organizations, investment clubs, and other entities. His numerous professional achievements are lauded by his peers and other financial experts.

Maggie Lena Walker
Maggie Lena Walker - First Known Black Financial Advisor

Maggie Lena Walker was the first female bank president in the United States. While she is often cited as the first known Black financial advisor, it's important to note that there may have been other individuals who provided financial guidance and support to their communities before her time. Nonetheless, her achievements as a pioneering African American businesswoman and social activist are widely recognized and celebrated.

Walker was born in Richmond, Virginia, and worked as a teacher and a seamstress before becoming involved in the Independent Order of St. Luke, a fraternal organization that provided mutual aid and support to African Americans. She rose through the ranks of the organization and eventually became its leader, overseeing its expansion into a major financial institution.

Today, Maggie Lena Walker is remembered as a pioneering figure in the history of Black finance and as a trailblazer for Black women in business and leadership. Her legacy continues to inspire Black financial advisors and other professionals who are working to address the racial wealth gap and promote greater equity and inclusion in the financial industry.

Black Financial Advisors Networks

Black advisors networking

Despite the benefits of working with Black financial advisors, they remain underrepresented in the industry. According to a 2019 report by the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, only 1.5% of all certified financial planners in the United States are Black. This highlights the need for increased efforts to recruit, train, and support Black financial advisors.

network of Black advisors

There are organizations and programs dedicated to supporting Black financial advisors, such as the Association of African American Financial Advisors and the National Association of Black Accountants. These organizations offer networking opportunities, professional development resources, and mentorship programs to help Black financial advisors succeed in the industry.

These networks are designed to address the unique challenges and experiences of Black financial advisors and to promote greater representation and inclusion in the financial industry.

Association of African American Financial Advisors Logo

One example of a Black financial advisor network is the Association of African American Financial Advisors (AAAFA), which was founded in 2002. The AAAFA aims to promote diversity and inclusion in the financial industry by providing networking, training, and professional development opportunities for Black financial advisors. The organization also works to increase financial literacy and access to financial services in underserved communities.

team of advisors

These networks are crucial in providing Black financial advisors with the resources and support they need to succeed in a challenging industry. By connecting Black financial advisors with each other and with industry leaders, these networks help to break down barriers and create more opportunities for Black professionals to build successful careers in finance.

These networks also play a critical role in promoting greater representation and diversity in the financial industry, which is essential to addressing the racial wealth gap and building a more equitable and inclusive economy.

Bay Street Capital Holdings

Bay Street Capital Holdings Logo

Bay Street Capital Holdings is a financial planning, wealth management, and investment advisory firm in Palo Alto, CA. The firm is unique in its focus on managing total risk and volatility to preserve and increase total assets and income.

William Huston, the founder, has over 13 years of experience supporting the largest retirement plan in the US and has been recognized as one of the Top 100 Financial Advisors for 2022 by Investopedia.

Bay Street advocates for diverse and emerging fund managers and entrepreneurs, and is the only Black-owned firm among the twenty recognized firms in California. The firm manages $480 million in assets and was a finalist in the Asset Manager for Corporate Social Responsibility category in 2021.






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