Career Paths

Career development depends upon a number of factors including personal drive, commitment, capabilities, skills, and experience. At Northwestern Mutual - Chicago we support our financial representatives’ progress by offering areas of specialization and opportunities for leadership training. Our financial representatives are responsible for the path their careers take, and we are responsible for providing them with ample opportunities for growth.

Following is one success story from our financial advisors, Certified Financial Planner® professional, Andrea Williams, who is forging her own path.


Andrea Williams, CFP®, CLU®
Financial Advisor

Andrea’s drive and determination have made her an invaluable advisor and advocate to lead her clients through the financial planning process. At the same time, she’s paved the path for the next generation of advisors, serving as a role model and mentor to people of color and women.

Corey D. McQuade
Managing Partner

With the firm belief that education is empowering, Certified Financial Planner® professional, Andrea Williams has trail blazed a path to the top of her field.  She has locally been recognized by Northwestern Mutual-Chicago as Financial Advisor of the Year and nationally she earned membership in Northwestern Mutual’s Forum Group – a group honoring individuals for an outstanding year of helping clients achieve financial security. This acknowledgment places her among the top 5% of Northwestern Mutual’s more than 6,000 financial professionals nationwide.  A leader in several significant ways, Williams is the first African American woman to achieve both honors.

In addition to the Northwestern Mutual company honors, Williams has been recognized with the NAIFA Quality Award[1]  which demonstrates a commitment to exceptional professionalism, service and adherence to the NAIFA Code of Ethics. She is also a member of the Million Dollar Roundtable (2013-2014), a global association of leading financial professionals.

Andrea is a Summa Cum Laude graduate from Dominican University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance and Economics. After working in accounting and as a financial analyst at the William Wrigley Jr. Company, she wanted to change her focus from corporate finance to the more personal “individual’s bottom line.”

Through her financial planning career, she entered new waters by bringing financial services to underserved markets focusing on women and the African American community.  Her ability to effectively lead resulted in her being named a College Unit Director, a role which found her mentoring and coaching college students participating in the firm’s Top 10 internship program. Since moving into financial planning, she has built a successful private practice focusing on the needs of physicians, dentists and business owners. Her desire to provide clients with the highest level of professionalism led her to study for and achieve her Chartered Life Underwriter® designation and Certified Financial Planner® certification.

For Williams, the CFP® certification is one career milestone of which she is particularly proud. Currently, based on self-reported data, the CFP Board estimates that there are only 1,200 African-Americans among the more than 74,000 Certified Financial Planners nationwide.

Williams has previously been featured in Forbes, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, Rolling Out , Black Enterprise and she was named to the Top 40 under 40 Game Changers through the Urban Business Roundtable in Chicago. She is a sought-after speaker on personal finance, financial planning and wealth management topics.

To learn more about Andrea, visit her website at 

To learn more about the Career Opportunity, contact: Tina Donoghue 


[1] NAIFA Quality Award (2013-2015)

Career Changers

Changing careers doesn't have to be daunting. Coming from many different backgrounds and occupations, our financial representatives go on to develop successful business practices. With support from a quality organization, it can be an easy transition.

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Looking for a career that allows flexibility and exceptional income potential? Do you want top-notch training, mentorship and resources? Have you been searching for a company that demonstrates a commitment to diversity and giving back to the community?

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