For Maeve DuVally, a spokesperson for Goldman Sachs, coming out as transgender at one of the biggest banks on Wall Street was easy.
"You basically pick a date and you flip a switch," said DuVally, managing director of corporate communications, who spoke at the Delivering Alpha conference presented by CNBC and Institutional Investor.
After 15 years at Goldman, DuVally had started experimenting dressing as a woman after work and she felt "immediately looser and happier." She decided to take a leap of faith this summer.
In April, DuVally contacted the human resource department and the office of diversity and inclusion at Goldman about changing her gender identity.
"We came up with a plan," DuVally said. "There's a lot of work that goes into that. We had to inform all the stakeholders in my life, mostly people internally at Goldman Sachs. Because I'm in media relations, that involves reporters."
"Once we've done all the preparation, it was easier than I thought," DuVally said. "It was the greatest experience."
DuVally said in the financial service industry, companies need to have a commitment to diversity from the top.
"Our previous CEO Lloyd Blankfein was very vocal in his support for the LGBTQ community," she said. "Our current CEO David Solomon is committed to getting [an] analyst class into Goldman in the near future that's 50% female and increasing the black and Hispanic representation in the firm."
Marty Chavez, former co-head of the bank's trading division, is openly gay and has been a strong advocate for Goldman's diversity and inclusion efforts.