Merrill Lynch Turns 100 - 5 Core Principles That Led It This Far

On January 6 Merrill Lynch will celebrate its 100 year anniversary. Former Chairman of Merrill Lynch International and son of one of ML's founders, Winthrop H. Smith Jr. reflects on its colorful history.
January 02, 2014

Giving Back to Community

Going back to early partners, Charlie and my father and others felt an obligation to give philanthropically to organizations, says Smith. "Charlie was big on education and encouraged local managers to be civically responsible ambassadors and encouraged them to join rotary clubs and so on to get involved in hospitals and schools, and there is a Merrill Lynch foundation given away a lot of money over the years.

That Scholarship Builder "adopted" a number of inner city 1st grade schools, and pledged if those students graduated high school and went to college they would fund their education. "Local managers mentored them over decades and continued to support them financially and also spiritually." He adds that only a couple days prior he had just received a message from a former manager regarding job opportunities for one of his mentored students.

The first history of Merrill Lynch, Catching Lightning in a Bottle: How Merrill Lynch Revolutionized the Financial World, by Win Smith can be purchased here.

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