Financial executives are rarely known for their fashion sense, but some top JPMorgan Chase (JPM) executives are trying to update the industry's pinstripes-and-ties image.
Chief Executive Jamie Dimon helped build the bank's fashion-forward buzz last year, when he wore presidential-seal cufflinks to a Senate hearing. Since then, the accessories have inspired waves of articles and even their own website. Now JPMorgan's chief financial officer, Marianne Lake, is following in Dimon's footsteps with an appearance in fashion magazine Marie Claire.
The two-page interview, titled "Wall Street's Woman on Top," focuses more on Lake's career choices and professional challenges than on her wardrobe. For example, she tells the magazine that the massive scrutiny over last year's London Whale trading affair did not give her much hesitation about accepting her promotion to CFO.
"This was the role on my list," Lake told Marie Claire. "It would have been irresponsible to go through the whole process, then get cold feet at the end. I thought hard about the impact this job would have on my life, and whether it was what I really wanted, before I threw my hat into the ring."
Lake, a single mother of a young son, also described her efforts to juggle parenthood and her demanding, high-profile job. She told the magazine that she relies on a circle of friends and a nanny, and tries to spend 15 minutes to an hour with her son in the morning.
"Failing that, I try for 30 to 60 minutes at the end of the day. I try to make that work, but if I can't, I just move on," she said. "You can't beat yourself up about it. I never worried about raising a kid on my own. I'm 42, not 20 with my eyes closed. The circumstances aren't traditional, but I didn't hesitate to do it."
Lake does not discuss her clothes or her professional style in the interview, but Marie Claire did photograph her in two less-than-traditional bankers' outfits, including a black leather sleeveless top by Derek Lam. For bankers who want to get the look, the top is currently on sale at the designer's website for $1,050, down from $1,750.