I have a very strong belief in what an advisory firm should be, yet it originated with a personal experience I never would have chosen.
My father passed away after a long illness while I was in college. I struggled with his loss in many ways, including a frustration that I did not know enough to help with my family's ensuing financial decisions. Although I was not able to see it at the time, that frustration proved to be a turning point.
While my interest in personal finance began to grow, I had no interest in pursuing a sales career within the traditional landscape of brokerage firms, banks, or insurance companies. It would be several years until an alternative would emerge in the form of truly independent advisory firms that deliberately chose to work outside of that landscape. Though small in number, they worked directly alongside their clients in a fiduciary capacity, just as I would want for my own family, and just as I wanted to work with others. When I established my own wealth management firm in 1997, it was the culmination of years of both private study and professional preparation for a specific career path that had taken on increasing personal importance for me.
While we have grown substantially over the years, we continue to sit on the same side of table as the individuals and families we work for, in the same fiduciary capacity we envisioned long ago. We help manage their investment portfolios and advise them on a range of financial planning considerations including retirement, executive compensation and benefits, tax and estate planning, risk management, and philanthropy.