Update on Divestment of $143 Million from Unilever - Ben and Jerry's Boycott of Israel | Restoring America's Energy Independence | National Security Crisis at the US Southern Border
About this Episode
Join America's Roundtable Radio co-hosts Natasha Srdoc and Joel Anand Samy in a conversation with Kimberly Yee, State Treasurer of Arizona and former Arizona Senate Majority Leader. Arizona and the Arizona Treasurer’s Office was the first state to divest state funds from Ben & Jerry’s due to their Israeli settlement boycott in Judea and Samaria last September. On September 7, 2021, Arizona State Treasurer Kimberly Yee's divested $143 million of public funds from Unilever PLC, Ben and Jerry's parent company.
Treasurer Kimberly Yee provides the latest update on Ben & Jerry’s and the actions taken by its parent company Unilever.
"As Arizona Treasurer, I've divested all state funds from Ben & Jerry's for boycotting Israel," Yee tweeted. "Israel is and will continue to be a major trade partner of AZ. #IStandWithIsrael and I will not allow taxpayer dollars to go towards anti-Semitic, discriminatory efforts against Israel."
The discussion with Arizona State Treasurer Kimberly Yee also focuses on America's inflation surge and the solutions presented to address the nation's energy crisis and the national security at the southern border. Arizona spans more than 370 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border. The U.S. Customs and Border Protection is on pace to make more than 2 million arrests along the Mexico border during the 2022 fiscal year.
On the energy front, Kimberly Yee has been a leading voice to hold to account the U.S. banking industry and the world’s largest asset managers when it comes to efforts to boycott energy companies. In November 2021, Treasurer Yee joined a coalition of 15 Republican Treasurers, Auditors, and Comptrollers of states representing over $600 billion in public assets with a warning that it could potentially reduce future business with banks that cut off financing for oil, gas, and coal.
The letter reads:
"We have a compelling government interest, when acting as participants in the financial services market on behalf of our respective states, to select financial institutions that are not engaged in tactics to harm the very people whose money they are handling. Further, we have the responsibility, as fiduciaries and stewards of more than $600 billion, to ensure that our financial service providers are free from harmful conflicts of interest that could jeopardize state funds. Any financial institution that has adopted policies aimed at diminishing a large portion of our states’ revenue has a major conflict of interest against holding, maintaining, or managing those funds."
Kimberly Yee is the State Treasurer of Arizona. She is Arizona's chief banking and investment officer and oversees the cash management of Arizona's $53 billion state budget and payments to agencies, local governments and schools. Upon taking office in January 2019, assets under management were at $15.4 billion. Today, assets under management stand at over $29.9 billion, an increase of 94 percent in 41 months.
The Arizona Permanent Land Endowment Trust Fund has also hit historic record highs increasing by $1.9 billion in value under Treasurer Yee's administration as of May 31, ,2022. Voluntary deposits into the Local Government Investment Pool have also increased by 74 percent under Treasurer Yee's leadership, reaching a record high balance of $5.87 billion in total assets as of May 31, 2022.
Treasurer Yee led the effort to pass a state law requiring students to have financial education in high school before graduation, and was the first State Treasurer to have visited all 15 counties in Arizona during the first year of her administration.
Treasurer Yee is the Chairman of the Arizona Board of Investment and State Loan Commission and is a member of the State Land Selection Board. She also serves as Chairman of the Financial Literacy Task Force, Arizona's first-ever statewide body dedicated to advancing personal money management and financial awareness for students, senior citizens, military families and vulnerable populations.
Treasurer Yee is the Administrator of the AZ529 Education Savings Plan. Since the Fall of 2020, Kimberly has grown assets to nearly $1.8 billion with more than 20,000 new accounts opened to help families save for higher education and workforce development.
Born and raised in Arizona, Treasurer Kimberly Yee is the first Asian American elected to a statewide office in Arizona’s history. She is also the first Chinese American Republican woman to win a major statewide office in the history of the United States. In 2010, she became the first Asian American woman elected to the Arizona Legislature and served for eight years, both in the House and the Senate.
Kimberly served as Senate Majority Leader and became the second woman elected to this position in Arizona’s history, following U.S. Justice Sandra Day O’Connor who served the position in 1973, forty-four years earlier.
Twitter: @KimberlyYeeAZ @ileaderssummit @NatashaSrdoc @JoelAnandUSA @supertalk
America's Roundtable is co-hosted by Natasha Srdoc and Joel Anand Samy, co-founders of International Leaders Summit and the Jerusalem Leaders Summit.
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