Director, Active Fund Research
Michael Herbst is director of active fund research for Morningstar. In this role, he oversees Morningstar’s U.S.-based active fund research analyst team and serves on the Morningstar Analyst Ratings Committee. Prior to assuming his current role in 2012, he was associate director of mutual fund analysis covering primarily fixed-income and multi-asset strategies. During his tenure, he has served as the fund research group’s lead analyst on asset managers including BlackRock, Western Asset Management, Invesco, and John Hancock, as well as for the world allocation, natural resources, inflation-protected bond, and government bond fund categories. He helped coordinate the development and launch of the Morningstar Analyst Rating™ for funds and Global Fund Report along with the firm’s Target-Date Fund Series Ratings and Reports.
Prior to rejoining Morningstar in 2011, Herbst worked as a senior investment analyst for EnnisKnupp & Associates, serving as consulting manager for endowment, defined benefit, and defined contribution clients representing $7 billion in assets under advisement. Earlier in his career, Herbst served as executive director of Incubator, Inc., a development consultancy serving 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organizations in the performing arts, public education, and adult literacy. He also worked as a professional musician.
Herbst holds a bachelor’s degree in music and English from the University of Michigan and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Michigan’s Stephen M. Ross School of Business.
George Sertl, Jr., CFA
George O. Sertl, Jr., CFA is a managing director of Artisan Partners and portfolio co-manager for Artisan Small Cap Value Fund, Artisan Mid Cap Value Fund, Artisan Value Fund and the firm's U.S. Value separate account portfolios. Prior to joining Artisan Partners, Mr. Sertl was a research analyst at Schwartz Investment Counsel. Mr. Sertl began his investment career at Pauli & Company working as a research analyst in 1992.
Mr. Sertl holds a BA in Economics and History from the University of Richmond and an MA in Economics from St. Louis University.
John D. Spears
Tweedy, Browne Company LLC.
John D. Spears has been with Tweedy, Browne Company LLC, a registered investment advisor, since 1974 and is a member of the firm's Management Committee and Investment Committee. He is a Managing Director of Tweedy, Browne Company LLC, and the Vice President of Tweedy, Browne Fund Inc., a mutual fund group. Founded in 1920, and serving originally as a broker to Benjamin Graham and other highly noted value investors, Tweedy, Browne began managing money for clients in 1968, and today manages approximately $13B in value portfolios for individuals, family groups and institutions. Before joining Tweedy, Browne, Mr. Spears had been in the investment business for five years with Berger, Kent Associates; Davic Associates; and Hornblower & Weeks-Hemphill, Noyes & Co. He studied at the Babson Institute of Business Administration, Drexel Institute of Technology and the University of Pennsylvania — The Wharton School. Mr. Spears brings over 40 years of experience to bear in the investment management business and has written and/or spoken from time-to-time on the topics of value investing, investment theory and behavioral finance.
Cheryl R. Holland , CFP ®
Cheryl R. Holland , CFP ® is President of Abacus Planning Group, Inc., a financial advisory and investment counsel firm managing over $700,000,000 in assets primarily for individuals. Ms. Holland consistently appears on top advisor lists such as Worth, Barron’s, Medical Economics, and Wealth Manager. Her company, Abacus Planning Group is the recipient of the 2007 Charles Schwab Pacesetter IMPACT Award® for Innovation and Accelerated Growth.
Ms. Holland is a member of the Bryn Mawr College Board of Trustees, serving as the chair of the Investment Committee for the Endowment. Ms. Holland is also a member of the American Bible Society Board of Trustees. She served as an appointed member of the Schwab Institutional Advisory Board, the Schwab Institutional Technology and Operations Advisory Board and the TIAA_CREF Board of Financial Advisors. She is a current member of the Park Street Capital VI and VII Advisory Board and Mineral Acquisition Partners Advisory Committee. Locally, she is a Vice-Chair of Clemson University College of Business and Behavioral Science Advisory Board, a former Elder at Shandon Presbyterian Church and serves as the Public Relations Chairman for the CFA Society of South Carolina.
Chief Executive Officer, Partner
Rebecca Pomering is Chief Executive Officer of Moss Adams Wealth Advisors. Ms. Pomering spent eleven years as a management consultant with Moss Adams LLP and consulting to many of the most well-known wealth management firms in the country on business strategy and management. She is regarded as one of the leading experts on the business of wealth management and is a prominent speaker and writer.
In 2008, Rebecca joined Moss Adams Wealth Advisors, the wealth management division of Moss Adams LLP, as CEO, to lead the firm’s integrated delivery of wealth management services. She is responsible for the growth of the firm including strategic planning, sales and marketing, team development, firm integration, and mergers and acquisitions.
S. Timothy Kochis, JD, MBA, CFP®
President – International Ventures, Principal
Tim Kochis founded Kochis Global in 2012 to foster best in class wealth management and investment planning services in the developing world, particularly in China and other rapidly growing markets in Asia. With 40 years of experience in the personal financial and investment planning profession, he has advised a select group of executives, professionals, and business owners throughout the United States and overseas. Before founding Kochis Global, Tim served as CEO and then as Chairman of Aspiriant and was a founder of Kochis Fitz, one of its predecessor firms. Prior to that, Tim was National Director of Personal Financial Planning for Deloitte & Touche (1985 – 1991) and for Bank of America (1981 – 1985).
Tim has long been recognized as one of the key leaders of the profession and has had an unparalleled influence on its development, worldwide, through his long and extensive client service, his success in building and growing the leading organizations within the profession, his service in professional and educational organizations, and his very frequent writing and speaking engagements to professional audiences around the world.
In 2010, the US Financial Planning Association conferred on him its most prestigious recognition, the P. Kemp Fain Award for exceptional career-long contributions to the financial planning profession. In 2006, he was awarded the inaugural Charles R. Schwab Impact Award for outstanding individual leadership in the independent advisory profession and the University of California Berkeley Business School Extension created an annual award for teaching excellence in his name. Barron's ranks him among the "Top 100 Independent Advisors" in the US, and the San Francisco Business Times ranked him first among the top independent Wealth Managers. Financial Planning Magazine has twice listed him as one of the profession's "Movers and Shakers".Tim currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Financial Planning Standards Board, the international certification authority for the CFP® credential, having previously served on its Board at its founding in 2004 and as its Chair in 2005. Tim had also served as Chair of the Foundation for Financial Planning, the CFP Board, and of its Board of Examiners, where he was responsible for development of the comprehensive CFP examination. He is also very active in civic and philanthropic efforts, serving on the boards of the University of San Francisco, the YMCA, the Asian Art Museum and several others. Tim earned a BA in Philosophy from Marquette University (1968), a JD degree from the University of Michigan (1973), and an MBA from the University of Chicago (1979). Tim served in the US Army from 1969 to 1971 including a tour of duty in Vietnam where he received a Purple Heart for wounds received in action.
Jim Grubman PhD is a consultant to families of wealth, their advisors, and resources in the financial services industry. He works with ultra-high-net-worth families concerning succession, financial education, communication, and other issues of family dynamics. He also provides consultation and training to family offices and Top 100 advisory firms about client relationship skills and organizational functioning. He designed and taught the first graduate-level-only course in psychology and financial advising in the US, and he is a faculty member for the Certified Private Wealth Advisor certificate sponsored by IMCA and the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. A member of the Boston Estate Planning Council and Family Firm Institute, Dr. Grubman has earned the Family Business Advising certificate. He has been featured in print, online, and television media along with journal publications and speaking engagements in financial services. His practice, FamilyWealth Consulting, is based in western Massachusetts.
Pershing, a BNY Mellon company
Chief Executive Officer
Pershing Advisor Solutions, a BNY Mellon company
Mark Tibergien is Chief Executive Officer of Pershing Advisor Solutions, a BNY Mellon company. Pershing Advisor Solutions is one of the country’s leading custodians for registered investment advisors and family offices. Mr. Tibergien is also a Managing Director and a member of the Executive Committee for Pershing. Mr. Tibergien is a nationally recognized expert on management and transition issues within the financial services industry. He joined Pershing in 2007.
Prior to joining Pershing, Mr. Tibergien was a principal at the accounting and consulting firm, Moss Adams LLP, where he was partner-in-charge of the Business Consulting group, chairman of the Financial Services Industry group and partner-in-charge of the Business Valuation group. Mr. Tibergien has been working with public and private companies on matters related to business management, transition planning and strategy formulation since 1973. He has worked closely with hundreds of independent registered investment advisors, brokerdealers, investment managers, insurance companies and other financial services organizations in the United States, Australia, Europe and Canada. For the past eight years, Accounting Today has recognized Mr. Tibergien as one of the “100 Most Influential” people in the accounting profession. In 2003 and 2008, Financial Planning magazine recognized him as a “Mover and Shaker” in its annual review of industry professionals; and, for the seventh time, in 2009, Investment Advisor magazine recognized him as one of the “25 Most Influential” people in the financial services industry.
Mr. Tibergien serves on the Board of the Foundation for Financial Planning, and within Pershing, is the Executive Sponsor of the Cultural Appreciation Network. He is the author of two books published by Bloomberg Press, Practice Made Perfect and How to Value, Buy or Sell a Financial Advisory Practice.
Vice President & Portfolio Manager
Carl Kaufman graduated from Harvard University (B.A. in Music, cum laude) and attended the New York University Graduate School of Business Administration.
Prior to joining Osterweis Capital Management in 2002, Mr. Kaufman was a senior member of the convertible bond team at Robertson Stephens, where he focused on technology and biotech securities. Prior to that, he spent nineteen years with Merrill Lynch in their Institutional Sales office, specializing in convertible bond and equity sales and trading. Mr. Kaufman completed a two-year internship in New York City with Merrill Lynch, where he was involved in securities analysis, asset management, operations, pension plan marketing, corporate finance and equity trading.
Mr. Kaufman is a principal of the firm and the lead Portfolio Manager for the fixed income strategy, which he has managed since its inception in 2002.
Jonathan Markowitz is a shareholder of Kottke Associates, LLC. Mr. Markowitz has been a member of the Chicago Board of Trade and the Chicago Mercantile Exchange since the early ‘80’s, and the New York Mercantile Exchange since 1991. With more than 25 years of experience in a variety of markets, he has expertise trading futures and options, including stock options, at the Chicago Board of Options Exchange. Prior to joining Kottke Associates, Mr. Markowitz was Executive Vice-President of SMW Trading Co., Inc., a proprietary trading and clearing firm in Chicago. Mr. Markowitz serves on the senior management committee overseeing the proprietary trading, fund management and brokerage operations for Kottke Associates, LLC. He received a BA from Washington University in St. Louis in 1976, and a JD from Tulane University Law School in 1981.
Wally Weitz is the founder and president of Wallace R. Weitz & Company. Weitz, a CFA charterholder, manages Partners III Opportunity Fund and co-manages Value Fund, Partners Value Fund and Hickory Fund.
Weitz's investment career began at age 12, when he invested his profits from various entrepreneurial ventures. After going through a charting phase in high school, he discovered Benjamin Graham's Security Analysis and was converted to value investing. After earning a BA in Economics at Carleton College in 1970, Weitz spent three years in New York doing security analysis, primarily on the small companies in which G.A. Saxton made over-the-counter markets. In 1973 he joined Chiles, Heider & Co., Inc., a regional brokerage firm in Omaha, where he spent 10 years as an analyst and portfolio manager. In 1983 he started Wallace R. Weitz & Company, and now heads a group of eight investment professionals that manages approximately $4 billion. Weitz's approach to value investing has evolved over the years. It combines Graham's price sensitivity and insistence on a "margin of safety" with a conviction that qualitative factors that allow companies to have some control over their own destinies can be more important than statistical measurements, such as historical book value or reported earnings. Weitz has the good fortune to be paid to pursue his favorite hobby, investing, but he also enjoys golf, skiing, tennis, reading and working with charitable and educational foundations. Weitz is on the Board of Trustees for Carleton College and serves on the Executive Committee of Building Bright Futures in Omaha.
Gary A. Miller, CFA, is Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Frontier Asset Management, LLC, a firm he founded in 2000. He also serves as Chairman of Frontier's Investment Committee.
Mr. Miller has served as the Chief Investment Officer of investment management and consulting firms, specializing in asset allocation, investment manager due diligence, and the management of portfolios of mutual funds since 1987.
Mr. Miller is an industry innovator and is one of the two original developers of returns-based style analysis of investment managers. His research into the expected long-term returns and risks of asset classes is the foundation of Frontier’s downside-risk oriented asset allocation process. His work in portfolio construction led to the development of “Complementary Genius,” Frontier’s investment management process.
Mr. Miller's research has been featured in numerous financial journals and he has spoken about asset allocation, style analysis and portfolio construction at the national conferences of numerous financial advisory organizations.
Mr. Miller earned his MSM, concentrating in investment management, from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1985, where he was a Presidential Fellow. He earned his BS degree in environmental resources engineering from Humboldt State University. Mr. Miller is a Chartered Financial Analyst charterholder and a member of the CFA Institute.
Luz M. Padilla
Portfolio Manager, Emerging Markets Fixed Income
Ms. Padilla joined DoubleLine in 2009. She is Senior Portfolio Manager of the Emerging Markets Fixed Income strategy. Prior to DoubleLine, she was a Managing Director at TCW since 1994, where she had served in a number of roles of increasing responsibility with the group, including Credit Analyst, Director of Research, Co-Portfolio Manager since December 2001, and lead Portfolio Manager since October 2006. She was involved in all aspects of building and managing TCW’s Emerging Markets Fixed Income business including credit, securitization, trading and marketing. While at TCW, Ms. Padilla managed the Emerging Markets Total Return Strategy. Ms. Padilla attended University of California at Berkeley as a fellow of the Robert A. Toigo Foundation and graduated with an MBA in 1994. Ms. Padilla received her Bachelors of Art degree in Economics in 1989 from Stanford University in Palo Alto, California.
Nadia Papagiannis, CFA
Director of Alternative Fund Research
Editor, Alternative Investments Observer
Nadia Papagiannis, CFA is director of alternative fund research for Morningstar. In this role, she leads a team of three alternative investment research analysts. She is also editor of the quarterly newsletter Alternative Investments Observer.
Prior to joining Morningstar in 2005, she was a senior compliance examiner at NASD (now FINRA), auditing broker-dealers. She also worked at the National Futures Association (NFA), auditing firms trading futures and options, including hedge funds.
Papagiannis holds a bachelor’s degree in finance and French from the University of Wisconsin and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Papagiannis also holds the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation. In 2011, Institutional Investor selected her as one of the publication’s Rising Stars of Mutual Funds.
President and Chief Investment Officer
Axel Merk is the President and Chief Investment Officer of Merk Investments, manager of the Merk Funds. He is a recognized expert on the global economy, monetary policy and international investing. An authority on currencies, he is a pioneer in the use of strategic currency investing to seek diversification and has been named a “Currency Guru” by Morningstar.
Axel Merk is a regular guest on CNBC, FoxBusiness and Bloomberg. His columns and interviews frequently appear in the Financial Times, Wall Street Journal, Barron’s and other financial media around the world. Merk is a sought after expert speaker at industry conferences, including the annual conferences of the CFA, FPA and AAII organizations in 2011, as well as at universities, government organizations and think tanks. Merk's expertise encompasses topics ranging from the global economy, gold and currencies to sustainable wealth and personal finance. Axel Merk’s Book “Sustainable Wealth” was published by Wiley in 2009 and his newsletter Merk Insights reaches a wide audience of investors, analysts and media following global macroeconomic issues and implications to investing.
Mr. Merk manages the Merk Hard and Asian Currency Funds and co-manages the Merk Absolute Return Currency Fund and the Merk Currency Enhanced U.S. Equity Fund. He holds a B.A. in Economics (magna cum laude) and a M.Sc. in Computer Science from Brown University.
Stephen Wershing, CFP
The Client Driven Practice
Want to get more referrals? Then STOP ASKING!
That’s the message of Stephen Wershing, CFP, President of The Client driven Practice. Steve exposes the fundamental misconceptions most financial professionals have been taught about referrals, and helps them create and execute referral marketing strategies that are based on principles that work. He consults financial practitioners on practice management issues including referral marketing, strategic differentiation and client advisory boards.
Steve has authored articles for the Journal of Financial Planning on referrals and client advisory boards, and been quoted in many trade and popular publications, including Financial Planning, Investment Advisor, Financial Advisor, Investment News and USA Today. In addition to his own blog, he writes a column for the website Advisors4Advisors.com. He has presented to industry groups including many chapters of the Financial Planning Association, FPA Business Solutions 2011 and the Investment Advisor Magazine Wealth Advisor Summit. His forthcoming book, Stop Asking for Referrals and Get More Than You Ever Have, is due out in April.
He entered the financial planning industry in 1987. His most recent executive positions include President of Ensemble Financial Services from 2002 – 2010, and Chief Operating Officer of Wall Street Financial Group from 1998 – 2002.
Bart Wisniowski, BBA
Director and Founder, AdvisorWebsites.com Software Inc.
Bart Wisniowski is an entrepreneur and web development specialist committed to creating effective websites for professionals in the financial services industry.
Bart is the co-founder of Tidal Interactive (where he currently sits on the board of directors) and AdvisorWebsites.com (where his is actively involved in running the business), two highly successful web development firms. He is also a co-author of "WebVisor - the Financial advisors guide to the internet", a book is written specifically for professionals in the financial services industry that provides concise, to the point information on various ways that advisors can leverage the internet in their practice.
Bart’s mission is to help financial advisors to create effective, user-friendly, customized websites, and his company has a stellar track record for website development. He understands what financial advisors are looking for in a website to help them attract clients and build their business.
Bart received his bachelor of business administration from Simon Fraser University with a double concentration in Finance and Management Information Systems. He has been working in the web development industry since 2000 and exclusively with financial advisors since 2002.
In his personal life he likes to spend time with his family, is an avid winter activities participant and enjoys most team sports.
Bart is a member for the Financial Planning Association and is also a long time volunteer with his local financial association chapter.
Managing Partner, Trumpet, Inc.
Joanne Day is Managing Partner of Trumpet, Inc. Trumpet designs and automates electronic document and workflow systems exclusively for financial advisory firms. As a workflow designer, Jo customizes and automates workflow for advisory firms throughout the country. Jo’s knowledge of back office operations makes her a valued commentator.
Jo has been a guest columnist for many financial advisory publications and journals as well as a guest speaker at national, regional and local FPA, NAPFA, broker/dealer, and custodian-sponsored conferences. Prior to founding Trumpet in 1999, Jo worked as a staff planner in a full service family office financial planning firm. She holds a Masters degree in Communication from the University of Florida.
Director of Sales, ShareFile
Adam Omernik is the Director of Sales of ShareFile for Investment Advisors. He's been with ShareFile for just over a year and works with financial firms to help them secure client and colleague communication. He moved to Raleigh, NC from California two years ago and is of the opinion that North Carolina is a lot like California but with seasons.
Gregory H. Friedman, MS, CFP
Co-founder and President, Private Ocean
Founder and President, Junxure
Greg is co-founder and president of Private Ocean, one of the West Coast's leading wealth management firms. He’s also founder and president of Junxure, a practice improvement firm that integrates software, training and consulting to help advisors streamline operations, deliver exceptional client service and grow their practices intelligently.
Greg is widely recognized as one of the nation’s top financial advisors. In 2008, Financial Planning Magazine named him to their elite list of “Movers and Shakers.” In 2008 and 2009, Investment Advisor Magazine included Greg in its list of Top 25 most influential financial advisors. He is one of a select few advisors to be named in consecutive years. In 2008, Charles Schwab Institutional presented Greg’s previous firm, Friedman & Associates, with its prestigious IMPACT Award™ for “Best in Tech”. Most recently, Financial Planning honored Greg with one of its Influencer Awards, presented to six advisors “whose innovative ideas and wide-reaching work are forging new paths for the planning industry.”
Steven W. Kaye, CFP® ChFC, CLU, CEBS, RHU, AAMS, CRC, AIF®
In 1980, Steven W. Kaye founded AEPG to serve the complex financial needs of individuals and businesses by providing a single, comprehensive source for financial planning and investment management. Under his strong leadership and expert guidance, the firm has grown to become a respected leader in wealth management. Steven is nationally recognized for his expertise in investment portfolio management. He is regularly interviewed by the financial press, trade journals, newspapers, television news shows, and consumer finance magazines. He was selected as a featured investment advisor by Morningstar Investor (1996) and Morningstar.com (1997) and was featured on the cover of Financial Planning magazine (September 1993). His work has been published widely and he appears frequently on programs such as Live at 5, The Morning Show, News Center 4, The Today Show, Market Wrap, Fox on Money, and CNBC's The Money Club. He has also appeared on United Airline's domestic in-flight financial news groups.
Steven works diligently to promote the growth and recognition of the financial planning and investment management industries through active membership in several professional societies. He is a former chairman of the board of directors and past president of the Northern New Jersey Society of the Institute of Certified Financial Planners (NNJS-ICFP) and founded and served as editor of their newsletter. He was also a board member for the Financial Planning Association of New Jersey (FPANJ). He and other AEPG professionals are often asked to lecture to professional organizations, employee groups, and civic associations on topics such as investment portfolio management, employee benefits, and estate planning.
Steven is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) professional and holds the professional designations of Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), Certified Employee Benefits Specialist (CEBS), Registered Health Underwriter (RHU), Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS), and Certified Retirement Counselor (CRC). He also holds the Series 66 designation from the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). He earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from Rutgers University.
Raj Udeshi is co-founder of HiddenLevers, a technology company focused on creating next generation risk management and macro analysis tools for RIAs, family offices, and private wealth managers. Mr. Udeshi is passionate about explaining the outcome of big-picture economic headwinds and black swans that can destroy wealth, and HiddenLevers was born out of wealth managers’ need to address macro risks. He is a frequent contributor to Morningstar and SeekingAlpha, giving commentary on Macro trends, economic uncertainties, and strategies to hedge or profit from these scenarios.
Mr. Udeshi’s background in Emerging Markets sales and trading includes executive positions at Bank of America Securities, GFI Group, and Enlace S.A (boutique LatAm inter-bank broker). On the Street, Raj dealt in interest rate swaps, FX, inflation-linked bond swaps, and FX options for the G7 and Latin America.
Mr. Udeshi is a graduate of Northwestern University and the Pepperdine School of Law.
John E. Ryan, CFP ®
An independent insurance broker since 1978, John is a Certified Financial Planner, Financial Planning Association (FPA) member, and the owner of the Colorado-based insurance firm of Ryan Insurance Strategy Consultants (RISC). John focuses primarily on life, disability, and long-term care insurance planning for highly compensated professionals and executives. John consults with financial advisors, attorney's, CPA's and their clients in addition to managing his own private insurance practice in Colorado.
John holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics from the College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, Massachusetts, and has conducted extensive insurance training classes through the Life and Disability Insurance Training Councils at the University of Notre Dame, University of New Hampshire, and the University of New Orleans.
John’s insurance expertise has led to a variety of speaking and teaching engagements throughout the country. He also has authored and participated in numerous industry-related articles for professional publications such as Kiplinger’s, Forbes, Broker World, NAPFA Advisor, Dow Jones Investment Advisor, The Physicians Personal Advisory, Northwest Physicians Magazine, Financial Planning Magazine, Money Magazine, Modern Maturity, Medical Economics, The Washington Post,
AARP Magazine, Time Magazine, AICPA Journal, National Public Radio (NPR), and CNBC T.V.
John’s lecture series include: Recent Developments in the Disability Insurance Marketplace; Long- Term Care Insurance – Disability Insurance for Retirees; Life Insurance in the Estate Planning Process; Long-Term Care Insurance Plan Design Considerations; Choosing the Right Life, Disability, or Long-Term Care Insurance Policy for Your Clients; The Ten Most Common Mistakes in Life, Disability, Long-Term Care Insurance Planning; and How to Evaluate an Existing Cash Value Life Insurance Policy.
William P. Bengen, CFP, M.S.
William P. Bengen, CFP, M.S. is a sole practitioner based in Chula Vista and La Quinta, CA. He is a fee-only personal financial advisor and member of NAPFA, the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors.
Mr. Bengen received a B.S. from M.I.T. in Aeronautics & Astronautics. He never practiced in that field, accepting a position with his family-owned soft drink bottling franchise firm in the New York Metropolitan Area. After 17 years with the company, during which he served a tenure as President and COO, the business was sold. Mr. Bengen migrated with his wife and two daughters to the gentler climes of Southern California, where he began his practice, earning his CFP in 1990 and his Master's Degree in Financial Planning in 1993.
Mr. Bengen is the author of a book entitled “Conserving Client Portfolios During Retirement”, which was published by FPA Press in May 2006. The book presents his research into sustainable withdrawals from an investment portfolio during retirement. Mr. Bengen’s articles and quotations have appeared in numerous publications including Forbes magazine, The Journal of Financial Planning, Financial Planning magazine, The Wall Street Journal, and Kiplinger’s@. He has at numerous financial planning conferences and meetings.
As avocations, he enjoys tennis, golf, astronomy, bridge, and collecting non-sports bubble gum cards from the 1950’s.
Bethany Carlson, CFA
Bethany Carlson, CFA, is a Founding Partner of Galway Investment Strategy. As an analyst she is a problem-solver and a skeptical thinker and challenges ideas to hone them to their best potential. Her experience in the industry spans posts in several worldwide offices with William M. Mercer, the largest global investment consultant to pensions and endowments, as well with the leading business consultant to RIAs in the US and internationally, and the research department of a large wealth management firm. Bethany obtained her Bachelors of Science with Honors in Applied and Computational Mathematical Sciences with an Emphasis in Economics from the University of Washington, and is CFA Charter-Holder.
Timothy D. Welsh, CFP®
President, Founder of Nexus Strategy, LLC.
Timothy D. Welsh, CFP® is President and founder of Nexus Strategy, LLC, a leading consulting firm to the wealth management industry. Nexus Strategy’s primary focus is working with investment advisors on growth strategies as well as partnering with leading financial services and technology firms to distribute products and services through the advisor channel.
Prior to founding Nexus Strategy, Tim was Director of Business Consulting Services for Schwab Advisor Services where he led the development and marketing of practice management resources for independent advisors, including an award-winning suite of business succession, financing and M & A services, along with the industry’s leading platform for referral marketing While at Schwab, Tim also held senior roles in Strategy, Marketing, Advertising, PR and Event content development.
Prior to joining Schwab, Tim was vice president at Merrill Lynch where he was responsible for marketing, product development and financial advisor training for the financial planning group. Tim is the author of a number of industry white papers and articles and is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and events. Tim earned a bachelor's degree in Economics from the University of California, Berkeley and an MBA in Finance from the University of Colorado.
Tim holds the Certified Financial Planner, CFP® designation and is an active member of the Financial Planning Association (FPA) serving in a leadership role on a number of task forces, committees and most recently as an elected member of the National Board of Directors.
Vice President of Sales & Marketing of Laser App software
Robert Powell is the Vice President of Sales & Marketing of Laser App software. He has a bachelor’s degree from California Polytechnic State University in Marketing Management. Over the last ten years, Robert has managed the implementation of seamlessly integrated solutions at several of the top custodians and many independent broker-dealers.
Sheryl L. Rowling
CEO of Total Rebalance Expert
Sheryl L. Rowling is Chief Executive Officer of Total Rebalance Expert, a rebalancing software solution designed to bring portfolio management to a new level with features such as Analysis Expert and Tax Loss Harvesting, both at the touch of a button. TRX enables advisors to significantly grow their practices through the efficient delivery of high-quality services.
A Certified Public Accountant, Personal Financial Specialist and principal at Rowling & Associates (former managing partner of Rowling, Dold & Associates LLP), Sheryl has been providing investment, tax and financial planning advice since 1979.
Sheryl holds an MBA in Finance and a BS Accounting from San Diego State University. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (tax and financial planning divisions), the California Society of Certified Public Accountants, the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, the All-Star Financial Goup and the Association of CPA Financial Planners. Sheryl is also the author of the CCH publicaton Tax and Wealth Strategies for Family Businesses.
Sheryl L. Rowling has been named one of Worth magazine's Top American Financial Advisors, one of Accounting Today's Top 100 Most Influential in Accounting and one of Wealth Manager magazine's Top 50 Women in Wealth Management.
VP of Institutional Business Development
Jon Reiners has been with Orion over 11 years serving roles of account manager, implementation manager, and VP of Sales. In his current role Jon oversees the Orion Marketing, Sales, and Technology Consulting teams. Over the past 11 years Jon has conducted and participated in over 5000 interactive meetings and helped more than 200 advisors implement Orion’s comprehensive portfolio accounting service bureau. Jon’s passion at Orion has been meeting with advisors helping identify and implement the right technologies to achieve scale and growth. In addition Jon works closely with Orion’s partners to ensure technologies are tightly integrated providing greater efficiency to our advisors.
Chief Executive Officer
As former senior legal counsel to major life insurance companies, mutual funds and broker dealers, David has more than two decades of financial services experience as well as specific expertise in annuity product development and distribution.
Before co-founding Aria, David was chief legal counsel for all of Charles Schwab’s insurance and risk management initiatives. He was a member of the firm’s Insurance Services management team as well as a co-leader of a cross-enterprise internal team dedicated to building a series of Schwab-branded financial products to be wrapped with annuity guarantees.
Prior to Schwab, David was in-house counsel at Allstate Financial, where he served as lead counsel on numerous product development projects for broker dealers and bank distributors.
David is a frequent speaker at industry conferences as well as an active participant on numerous committees dedicated to retirement income product solutions.
Chief Executive Officer
Philip Palaveev is an industry expert and highly sought after consultant focused on creating a team-based financial advisory business aimed for sustained growth, profitability and value.
Philip is the owner and CEO of The Ensemble Practice LLC, a business management consulting firm that defines the evolution of growing a multi-professional advisory practice. He specializes in helping independent financial advisors grow their business from a solo practice into a thriving and profitable ensemble firm. Philip also works with broker-dealers and custodians on creating impactful practice management services for their advisors.
Prior to launching The Ensemble Practice, Philip served as President of Fusion Advisor Network, a network of independent advisors that changed the way broker-dealers deliver business management and camaraderie to their clients. As President, Philip was responsible for the strategy of the firm and led its growth from a fast-growing start-up to one of the industry’s most innovative and successful firms.
Until 2008, Philip was a principal in Moss Adams LLP, an accounting and consulting firm with industry-leading expertise in practice management. Philip led the market research for Moss Adams and consulted with hundreds of advisors and several top broker-dealers on business management functions.
Philip authored “The Ensemble Practice,” a book dedicated to the process of building a multi-professional enterprise. The book will be released in October this year. He is also known for his industry research papers and articles, is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and contributes regularly to industry blogs.
He lives in rainy Seattle, WA with his wife and two children. Philip is a reluctant marathon runner and an amateur boxer with more concussions than victories.
Keith Pettus, CAIA, CFA
Keith Pettus, CAIA, CFA, Vice President, joined SQN Capital Corporation in July 2010 and assumed responsibility for the development of relationships with registered investment advisors throughout the Western United States. Most recently a Proprietary Trader with Assent, LLC, Mr. Pettus began his career in finance in late 2002 with American Express Financial Advisors. He previously worked with the SQN team at the largest independent, privately-held equipment finance company in a fundraising capacity for both the Midwest and Northwest Regions. Mr. Pettus received his B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Lehigh University, is a Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst(CAIA), Chartered Financial Analyst(CFA), and holds FINRA Series 7, 24, 55 & 66 Licenses. He is an active member of the CAIA Association, CFA Society of San Francisco, CFA Institute, FPA, FPA of San Francisco and spends his free time working with the Bay-Area Non Profit The Guardsmen, which provides at-risk youth with the resources they need to thrive. He resides in the San Francisco Bay Area with his wife Cathy, and young son Colby.
Senior Vice President of Product
Brandon Rembe has been with Tamarac since the beginning. During his tenure, Brandon has worked in and managed many aspects of the business from development to institutional sales. He previously led the development team as Sr. Developer where he designed and implemented Tamarac's modeling and family account functionality. More recently, Brandon served as the Chief Technology Officer, where he was responsible for managing the development team and coordinating all technical projects and releases. Today Brandon serves as the Senior Vice President of Products for Envestnet | Tamarac.
Prior to joining Tamarac, Brandon worked in the Seattle branch of Smith Barney.
Brandon holds a B.A. in Economics from the University of Washington.
G. Michael Phillips, Ph.D.
Dr. Phillips has been a professor of finance at California State University, Northridge since 1985 and serves as director of the CSUN Center for Financial Planning and Investment. He previously taught at the University of Southern California and served as an economist for the United States Department of Commerce. Dr. Phillips received his Ph.D. in 1982 from the University of California, San Diego, with the dissertation advice of Walter P. Heller and Nobel Prize winner C. W. J. Granger.
Dr. Phillips is author or coauthor of numerous monographs and a book. In addition, his articles have appeared in various scholarly economics and finance journals including Quarterly Journal of Finance and Accounting, Journal of Asset Management, Journal of Economics and Finance, American Real Estate and Urban Economics Association Journal, The Appraisal Journal, Business Valuation Review, Defense Counsel Journal, Family Business Review, Industrial and Labor Relations Review, Journal of Business Forecasting, Journal of Forensic Economics, Journal of Insurance Issues and Practices, Journal of Monetary Economics, Journal of Risk and Insurance, and Litigation Economics Digest. He has also published research in the fields of biology and engineering. His research generally involves the subjects of expectation formation and valuation in incomplete or informationally constrained markets. Building on this research, Dr. Phillips led the development of EconomicInvestor and MacroRisk Analytics, web-based investment tools for individuals and finance professionals respectively. This research has resulted in 10 patents with more pending. He uses these patented tools to show how the economy relates to investment values for assets including stocks, mutual funds, indices, and portfolios.
Dr. Phillips has acted as a consultant for several governmental agencies as well as many of the Fortune 500. He has also served as an expert witness in Federal and State courts regarding statistics, econometrics, forecasting, economics, finance, and valuation. In addition to his academic appointment, Dr. Phillips is the Chief Scientist of the Center for Computationally Advanced Statistical Techniques (c4cast.com, Inc.).
Vice President of Morningstar Office
Michael Wilson is Vice President of Morningstar Office, Morningstar’s complete Practice and Portfolio Management system. Wilson joined Morningstar in 2000, as a QA Analyst- first working on Principia® and then as QA Team Lead during the development of Advisor WorkstationSM. In 2002 he became Morningstar’s Product Consultant Manager. His team of 25+ supported Morningstar.com, Print Products, Principia, Workstation and Morningstar OfficeSM.
In 2006, Wilson became Director of Marketing for Principia. He helped market, develop, and integrate newly acquired Ibbotson products and rebranded them. In 2007, Wilson became Director of Marketing for Morningstar Office. Wilson successfully rebranded the product, helped to restructure the sales process and raised awareness of Morningstar’s performance reporting capabilities within the industry. Wilson graduated from Kenyon College with distinction and holds an A.B. in history. In 2007, he earned an M.B.A from the University Of Chicago Booth School Of Business.
James A. Shambo, CPA/PFS
President of Lifetime Planning Concepts, Inc.
James A. Shambo is President of Lifetime Planning Concepts, Inc. a financial planning and investment advisory firm. He is a Personal Financial Specialist receiving the designation With Distinction in 1985. Mr. Shambo served on the Executive Committee of the AICPA Personal Financial Planning Division from 1990 to 1995 and served as chairman from October 1993 to October 1995. Jim also served on the Colorado Specialization Oversight Board that created the PFS designation. He is a member of the Colorado Society of CPAs.
Jim was awarded the 2008 Financial Frontiers Award for Techniques in Financial Planning for his paper "The Hedonic Pleasure Index ™ - An Enhanced Model for Spending Inflation." The award presented annually by Janus Capital Group and The Financial Planning Association promotes serious research and innovative thinking on wealth management and financial planning topics.
Mr. Shambo received the 1999 Distinguished Service Award from the AICPA - PFP Division and special recognition in 2011 for his years of outstanding contributions to the PFS Credential. He has been named among the Best Financial Advisers in the United States by Worth magazine for seven years and twice in Bloomberg’s Wealth Manager’s Top Dog listing. He has been listed in Accounting Today as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People and in the Names to Know in Financial Planning for several years. He has appeared on CNN, CNBC and several local network affiliates discussing financial planning and CPA financial planners.
CEO of OLTIS Software
Oleg Tishkevich is the founder and CEO of OLTIS Software and the architect of Finance Logix, a next generation financial planning software. Tishkevich has over 15 years of experience in the financial technology industry, serving as a key contributor in building many custom financial planning systems for large financial institutions. Prior to founding Oltis Software, Mr. Tishkevich worked at Thomson Financial, managing large software projects for the Wiesenberger and Nelson divisions of Thomson. In this role, Tishkevich delivered firm-wide solutions for companies such as Prudential, Wells Fargo, Pacific Life Insurance, and others. Prior to Thomson Financial, Tishkevich led the custom software development for a financial planning software start-up company, which was acquired by Thomson Financial. Tishkevich has served as a member of the Corporate Resource Counsel of the Financial Planning Association (FPA) as well as a member of the YourSilverBullet consortium committed to integration between software systems in the financial services industry. Tishkevich is also leading a mathematical modeling research project focusing on asset distribution analysis and asset depletion optimization, which will be used to further refine and enhance financial planning software development.
Vice President, Pingar
Doug has over 17 years’ experience in the content management space ranging from software and hardware solution sales to consulting. At Pingar, Doug generates demand for products through marketing and education and as such, attends numerous events and seminars throughout the country to discuss and demonstrate the power of metadata and search. Prior to Pingar, Doug spent 10+ years at Fujitsu where he was responsible for sales and business development for the highly successful desktop scanner, ScanSnap!
Doug enjoys helping companies find solutions for their information management and Big Data problems. He also enjoys traveling with his family, golfing and coaching soccer.