Investing for Women: An evening with NZSA and Frances Cook

Women talking to women about investment

Join us for an empowering and insightful event designed for women, by women, as we delve into the world of financial investing.

“Women investors tend to achieve positive returns and outperform men by 40 basis points, according to research from Fidelity Investments, based on an analysis of annual performance for 5.2 million accounts. Yet the firm also found women tend to hold too much cash on the sidelines and often feel they need to know more before they invest.”

This event is not just about learning; it’s about engaging in a conversation that empowers women to take control of their financial futures. Share your thoughts, ask questions, and connect with like-minded individuals on the same journey towards financial independence and success!

We will address misconceptions about women investors by exploring the differences in investment approaches between genders. We’ll examine what inhibits women from embracing investment opportunities and the biggest influences on women’s investment decisions. We will also include practical tips on how to kickstart your investment journey.

It’s about your investment from your perspective.


Each event will be held from 5:30pm-7:30pm. Follow the links below to claim your spot!

Thursday 14th March

Tūranga, Cathedral Square



Monday 18th March

The Royal Society,11 Turnbull Street
Thorndon, Wellington



Tuesday 19th March

Park Central, 3 Melody Lane



Wednesday 20th March

Trinity Wharf, 51 Dive Crescent



Thursday 21st March

iHeart Lounge, 2 Graham Street



Don’t miss this opportunity to unlock financial investing for a brighter future! Let’s shatter stereotypes and embrace the potential. We can’t wait to see you there!

Our Speakers

Join Frances Cook, business journalist, best-selling author, and financial freedom-seeker, as she MC’s each event and interviews our panellists. Our panels will vary from city to city, but each will include an NZSA board member and two investors with different stories to tell.

Now? I’m a financial expert, who has dedicated my career to helping normal people do better with their money.

Earlier? Well, I was a money mess. Always stressed about money, not understanding where it was going, why I was working so hard and getting nowhere.

None of us are born knowing about money. I learned the hard way, so that you don’t have to. Now I’m qualified as a financial adviser, specialising in investments. I host New Zealand’s #1 business podcast. I write the weekly Money Answers column for BusinessDesk and the Herald on Sunday. I explain the money news you need to know on TVNZ Breakfast, and AM Show.

I’m the person you can trust to help you figure out how money works, so that you can get the easy wins that make life so much better.

Financial freedom is possible for normal people. I’ve done it myself. I’ve helped countless others achieve it.

Let’s make it happen.

Joy Marslin

NZSA Board Member
Christchurch and Tauranga panellist

Joy’s vision is for a more transparent and accessible investment market for all New Zealanders, which will help to close the wealth gaps.

She has been involved in investment markets for 40 years and in the early 1990’s Joy was one of the first women in New Zealand to complete the newly established NZX diploma, which provided her a deeper understanding of how capital markets functioned.

Joy believes that building trust, simplifying and educating people on the principles of investing are essential components for everyone working within the investment sector so more people have the confidence to make investment decisions that are right for them.

Regulation and consumer law have done a lot to support investors, but the sector needs to reflect and challenge itself continuously to ensure fair and balanced outcomes for everybody.

Today Joy holds several governance roles, including NZSA, that align with her vision. She is Chair of Simplicity NZ Ltd (fund manager), non- executive director of Strategi Group (educator and compliance), Financial Services Complaints Ltd (financial ombudsman), Impact Enterprise Fund (people, planet and performance) and independent member of Metis Investment Committee.

Louise Nicholson

NZSA Board Member
Hamilton and Auckland panellist

An investor herself, Louise is passionate about encouraging more women to invest.

Louise led the investor capability function at the Financial Markets Authority, helping equip retail investors with the tools and information to protect themselves and make good decisions.

While at the FMA, Louise had a particular interest in better understanding and supporting women investors, championing in-depth research and information campaigns targeting women.

She also led an award-winning campaign to increase awareness about the gender gap in retirement savings while she was working in ANZ Bank’s wealth team.

Ruth Tolise

NZSA Board Member
Wellington panellist

Ruth is a Kiwi with a multicultural background and a passion for financial education and empowerment. She has over 20 years of experience in the financial sector and is skilled in finance, risk management, and portfolio construction.

Ruth advocates for financial literacy and inclusion for women and ethnic minorities and participates in various initiatives and programs to support them. She also serves on the board of NZSA and other organisations that share her values and vision.

Ruth is a proud New Zealand Samoan, who values her cultural heritage and community. She believes that investing is a powerful tool for achieving financial independence and security. She is keen to share her insights and experiences with other women who want to learn more about investing and growing their wealth.

Jenny Lee

NZSA Member
Christchurch panellist

Jenny has been a teacher in primary, secondary, English language schools & at Lincoln University and is now retired.

Teaching taught her communication, management and survival skills, but nothing about investment. Her experience as an active investor began with setting up a share portfolio after retirement and learning how exciting and worrying it could be.

She listens to advice but makes her own decisions – some of which have been terrible!

Sue Smart

NZSA Member
Christchurch and Tauranga panellist

Sue is a converted “townie”. She and her husband bought a 450ha sheep farm, and she also worked in agricultural research.

She has always been interested in how money works and had a goal of having a passive income to allow for lifestyle choices.

Off-farm investment had been a priority while farming, and came into its own following the sale of the farm.

Diversification and making her money work hard means that Sue is ‘living the dream’ funded by her passive investments.

Susan Szeto

NZSA Member
Wellington panellist

Susan is a self-described DIY investor with a professional background in market research and due diligence.

She has worked for 20 years to help multi-national and local start-ups in the pharmaceutical, animal health, aviation and software industries. Her investment journey began over 25 years ago, largely as an inquisitive and passionate DIY investor in shares and start-ups.

Susan enjoys spending time with her family and can often be seen hiking the hills of Wellington. Her message to other women is that it’s never too early or too late to start or re-start your investment journey!

Janey Haringa

NZSA Member
Hamilton panellist

Janey’s journey spans from her academic roots in Biomedical Science and Bioscience Enterprise to her immersion in private equity and venture capital investment groups.

Now as the founder & principal lawyer of JH LAW, she considers herself as a DIY investor, picking up learnings from her work across corporate, commercial & property law.

One important thing Janey would like to pass on to other women about share investing is the significance of education and confidence. It’s crucial to learn about about the basics of investing and understanding the different investment options available before diving in.

Wendy Dykes

NZSA Member
Auckland panellist

Wendy is former horticultural consultant who then moved into Health IT project management.

For Wendy, investing is a lifelong journey of learning, spanning ‘boom and bust’ cycles, so-called ‘hot’ companies anmd ‘boring’ stocks. These days, she regards herself as a cautious investor with a philosophy based on “getting rich slowly”. One of her top tips is to have a good Portfolio research tool – much more helpful than a simple spreadsheet!

Laraine Holdom

NZSA Member
Auckland panellist

Laraine spent 11 years working overseas in the employ of the British Foreign Office. On returning to NZ, she joined the travel industry including helping to train travel students.

She describes herself as a ‘hybrid investor’ in that she relies on others for advice – but also undertakes her own investment research. She is proud that she is responsible for her own financial decisions.

What I would say to women considering share investing is to do your homework on the companies in which you are considering investing and learn from mistakes!

Bronwyn Smits

NZSA Member
Hamilton and Tauranga panellist

Bronwyn’s investment journey started mid-life. As a veterinarian working for Ministry of Agriculture and Food in the 90’s, she established an animal health and veterinary diagnostic laboratory with three colleagues. The stress of a growing business took its toll, and following a relatinoship breakdown, Bronwyn had to take stock of her future and financial security.

She took steps to improve her own investment capability, including the structure of her shareholding in her business, what to do with dividends and how to handle debt. This experience helped her when it came to looking at investments in public companies.

Her lessons included how businesses work, how economies affected her returns and how to take calculated risks. A new relationship opened doors into other types of investment, including property.

Bronwyn believes that diversification is vital, regardless of investment and the benefit of time and compounding growth is a mantra in developing real wealth.

Gillian Boyes

NZSA Member
Wellington panellist

Gillian Boyes was a marketing and communications consultant for many years working for government agencies and financial companies.

She spent over six years at the financial markets regulator developing and implementing their strategy for investor capability and since leaving the regulator has maintained an interest in finance through a board role on Women in Super.

Despite having worked in the industry, Gillian describes herself as a lazy investor, preferring to use managed funds, ETFs and her KiwiSaver to largely set and forget her investment strategy.

Helping women build confidence that they can achieve their investing goals by understanding basic investing rules is a particular passion for her.