William Blair’s Justine Chiou, a managing director with the investment banking team, was named to Mergers & Acquisitions 2021 Top 25 Most Influential Women in Mid-Market M&A.
The magazine’s rankings, published on February 1, honor consummate dealmakers who are also champions of change and powerful advocates for diversity, equity, and inclusion.
As a member of the investment banking education team, Chiou witnessed first-hand how the COVID-19 pandemic forced the global education system to really rethink how it operates.
“It affects everything from when and how to learn and how to deliver it all the way to getting the right content in the hands of teachers and students and thinking about how pedagogy really works in a remote environment,” she said.
Two deals she led in 2020—the sale of Cadence Education to Apax and the sale of StraighterLine to BV Investment Partners—underscore the change ongoing within the education sector. Cadence is an early childhood educator, operating private preschools across the United States. StraighterLine delivers online higher education at a lower cost to non-traditional students.
“Both are mission-driven companies, and I’m proud that our team was able to help them get greater access to capital and operational support to continue delivering on their missions,” Chiou said.
Chiou is also proud of her team’s mission to raise more than $60,000 last year for organizations dedicated to social justice and driving change. Those donations were then tripled by William Blair as part of its new gift-matching program to promote inclusion, racial equity, and social justice.
To learn more about Chiou and the other women listed, visit: