Lesley Palmer

Managing Director

Community Relations

Americas

Years in the industry: 25+ years
Area of focus: Corporate responsibility, community reinvestment and CRA, sustainability
School: Cornell University and Columbia University

What do you do at Mizuho?

I head the Community Relations team, which oversees corporate social responsibility and community engagement programs and relationships. We manage the Mizuho USA Foundation, Inc., our charitable foundation in the US, which funds community development programs in NYC, and coordinate our employee volunteerism and philanthropy programs. As CRA officer for Mizuho Bank (USA), I am responsible for Mizuho’s compliance with the Community Reinvestment Act, which encompasses community development lending, investments, grants and services. We work closely with colleagues across the firm on Mizuho’s sustainability and ESG initiatives.

What are Mizuho's culture and people like?

Our culture is collegial and collaborative with an emphasis on excellence. Across the firm, people are supportive, friendly, and a pleasure to work with. Even our busiest employees regularly make time to volunteer and help our community partners. What’s more, I am constantly working with and learning from a wide array of remarkable people with varied interests and points of view.

What’s a particularly proud moment you’ve had here?

I have had countless inspiring moments watching our staff and our community partners come together to create positive change. With our year-round schedule of volunteer events, it is always a great feeling to watch people helping people. We are also so proud of financial and social benefits that come from extending credit to help community development financial institutions support affordable housing and serve our city’s smallest businesses. 

What motivates you at Mizuho?

The Mizuho USA Foundation and our Mizuho Cares program have supported an extraordinary array of nonprofits over the years. I’m always inspired and challenged by the commitment to bring together stakeholders to both generate solutions and take action in response to community needs. 

What do you do for fun?

This may sound obvious – but I get a lot of joy from volunteering, and new opportunities to meet and learn from other people. 

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