(Bloomberg) -- Beth Hammack had been billed as one of the most likely candidates to break into Goldman Sachs Group Inc.’s all-male top tier. 

Now, she’s calling it quits after 30 years at the Wall Street giant, according to people with knowledge of the matter. 

Hammack, 52, was once seen internally as a top choice to become the next chief financial officer — a rare elevation for a woman to one of the bank’s most senior positions.  

Even on Wall Street, where men dominate most firms, the lack of women at Goldman’s highest levels has been a sore point internally. No woman has ever been appointed to the role of chair, chief executive officer, president or CFO in the company’s history.   

That challenge was underscored last month when Goldman created two new committees within its investment bank. It tapped 25 executives as the emerging leaders who would have a say in running its sprawling trading and banking business. 

Only three women made the cut, including Hammack, a former treasurer who most recently was a co-head of the firm’s global financing group. 

Goldman has pledged to lift more women into its most senior roles, and for years Hammack had been among a small cohort who made the list in every behind-the-scenes conversation. Insiders saw her filling jobs that would have made her one of the bank’s most prominent faces on Wall Street.

Read More: Beth Hammack’s Rise at Goldman Sachs

“Goldman Sachs is an extraordinary institution that manufactures the world’s best executive talent. Beth had an incredible 30-year run of transforming businesses,” said Katie Koch, the CEO of TCW Group and a former colleague. “She is unbelievably well positioned for her next leadership role.”

A representative for New York-based Goldman and Hammack declined to comment.  

More Experience

She moved into her latest role running the financing unit after being passed over for CFO in 2021. At the time, the bank’s executives explained the move as an effort to help her gain more experience running a revenue-generating group that would set her up for more senior positions later. 

Hammack grew up outside Philadelphia and had two summer internships at the Philadelphia Stock Exchange. Her father, Howard Morgan, is a venture capitalist who helped billionaire Jim Simons start Renaissance Technologies. She joined Goldman in 1993 and began to climb the ranks within its trading division. 

She held a variety of roles dealing with agency bonds, rates and repo trading. Her rise was driven by her ability to deal with regulators and government bodies after she made partner in 2010. Hammack also went on to chair the Treasury Borrowing Advisory Committee — an influential Wall Street group that has the ear of the US Treasury secretary. “She’s a unique talent who dedicated her life to the firm,” Jake Siewert, a Warburg Pincus partner said.

Hammack’s elevation to treasurer in 2018 was a point of contention within the bank. Top executives disagreed about whether the trading unit could spare one of its rare senior women, highlighting the dilemma in its bid to diversify Goldman’s highest ranks. 

When then-CFO Stephen Scherr left in 2021, Hammack was moved to the banking group, and the firm’s leadership instead tapped Denis Coleman as the next finance chief. 

“Beth always approached the business with a deep intellect,” Scherr said. “She was among a small number of people who worked both as a trader and a banker. There is no doubt that her success at the firm was a product of that versatility.”

Isabelle Ealet became the first woman to run a major division at the firm in 2012, when she was tapped to lead the trading unit. Today, Stephanie Cohen is the only woman running one of the bank’s three units. She’s in charge of Platform Solutions, which is being dismantled as Goldman reverses its push into consumer banking.

Cohen has been on leave since June, and the firm’s senior executives have said they don’t expect her to come back. A company spokesman Tony Fratto said last year that Cohen will definitely return, and “to suggest anything else is completely inaccurate.”

Cohen didn’t reply to messages seeking comment.

(Updates with additional details and comments throughout.)

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