Financial Life Guide
I do not have a job! No, I’m not unemployed, but as the CEO of Blue Blaze Financial Advisors, LLC, instead of reporting to work I’m able to pursue my passion.
That passion is embodied in our mission – “Partnering with people to provide insight, clarity and direction to achieve an optimal life.”
I have an affinity for numbers and problem solving. Sudoku over a crossword puzzle - any day. Monopoly over Scrabble - no brainer. My comfort with mathematics during my early education eventually led me to be a 1970 summa cum laude graduate from Boston College with a BS in finance. Needing the structure of the numerical world, I tried my hand in the accounting profession and became licensed as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and worked in a large international accounting firm. With an unbelievable training in the understanding of financial statements, tax code, and internal control combined with a healthy dose of curiosity and problem solving skills, I entered the Wall Street financial arena.
After 20+ years of sharpening my skills at JP Morgan, I decided my calling in life was not to add a few more “zeros” to a billion dollar company, but rather utilize my skills and successful experiences to help people achieve their personal goals.
Leaving stable employment to pursue a dream surely has some risks, but the potential rewards could be life changing. Following many of the financial success factors I now recommend to clients, I was able to start my own business and obtain my Certified Financial Planning (CFP) designation and establish new client relationships. Because I had planned and prepared for this change, I was able to achieve another goal of providing college education for my four children.
An optimal life? I think I am pretty close. A loving family (including a new granddaughter), awesome clients who drive our firm, and an enthusiastic staff who both learn and teach. Who needs a lower handicap?
As a Certified Financial Planner® at Blue Blaze Financial Advisors, I work closely with our clients on a daily basis on big picture planning strategies and their implementation. My focus is to be an integral component to helping people reach their optimal life. I accomplish this by building a trustworthy relationship, listening to your needs and desires, making recommendations based on your best interest, and overseeing the execution of planning strategies.
I graduated from Boston College in 2006 with a degree in Finance as well as Film (always diversify). After a brief stint working in the film production department for the Boston Red Sox (I’ve been inside the Green Monster!), I began my career at Anderson Tax, a high net worth tax consulting firm. There, I was exposed to both core taxation concepts as well as the finer intricacies of high net worth tax planning strategies that I bring to the table with our clients today.
In my own personal life I have a deep passion for setting and achieving goals. From running the Boston Marathon to hiking the entire 2,168.1 miles of the Appalachian Trail, I have experienced the challenges and rewards of “planning big”. Drawing upon these experiences, as well as my formal financial education, help me to think outside of the box when working with our clients to turn the complex problems in their lives into simple solutions.
I strive to work differently from some of the other options for financial relationships in the world. I am not driven by selling you products in order to line my own pockets, as is customary in our industry. I build relationships and help those I care about reach their maximum potential. When I originally set out to hike the Appalachian Trail in 2011, my goal was simply “to finish”. After starting, I quickly realized that enjoying the day to day experiences to the fullest was just as important (if not more) as reaching the northern terminus. I look forward to bringing my diverse background to our relationship and walking by your side as you enjoy the journey to your goals.
Financial Life Guide and Director of Client Services
We all know how hard it is to make a decision without having “all the information”, especially a financial one. As a Planning Associate at Blue Blaze Financial Advisors, my role is to ensure clients can make these important decisions using the most accurate information and analysis supporting our advisors’ recommendations.
As an integral part of the onboarding process, I work closely with all new clients to make certain we have a sound understanding of your current financial situation. With this as a foundation, coupled with an understanding of your goals and objectives, I start to paint the picture, which becomes your financial plan.
I also work with our clients to ensure they receive the highest value from their personal financial website, myCompass. A main focus of my mine is to provide our clients with the ability to see a complete picture of their financial life, on-demand, 24-7, 365. Combining my love for technology and utilizing nearly a decade of banking experience, I aid our clients with the cash management tools, investment reporting features, and overall best practices within the system so they can have a better grasp on their financial household, all in one place. Regardless of your situation, I will work with you to help change any problems into opportunities.
Although I have a full plate here at Blue Blaze, I am able to still find the time to do things I enjoy outside of work. I absolutely love to cook and I have so much fun trying out new recipes or improving old favorites. Outside of trying to become the next “Top Chef”, I enjoy spending my free time playing volleyball or ultimate Frisbee as well as spending time with friends and family.
“A goal without a plan is just a wish.” - Antione de Saint-Exupery
This is the reason I signed up as a client with Blue Blaze five years ago. I knew my destination, but despite being a planner and a numbers guy, I wasn’t sure how to get there. I was a successful foreign currency trader with a 27 year career, and yet I was burdened with questions. How am I going to afford to put my four daughters through college? Am I spending too much money? Will I ever be able to afford to walk away from FX trading? Will I have enough money saved when I retire? How do I find enough hours in the day to spend quality time with my family? Blue Blaze guided me through these obstacles and showed me a path to succeed.
When the opportunity presented itself to join them as an advisor it was an easy decision. After working with the firm as a client, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to become part of the team and help their clients the way they helped me. My career in trading taught me many things - disciplined planning, relationship building, the ability to explain complex information simply and clearly, interpersonal skills and attention to details. As an advisor at Blue Blaze I get to use these skills every day, for real people, and not a corporation. I help my clients see the difference between the hard value of what they invest in and the intrinsic value those investments bring them. I stay focused on their goals so they don’t lose focus on what is important to them.
On Wall Street I loved the personal challenge to be profitable everyday, but these days I’d rather do something that adds value to people’s lives rather than making banks more profitable.
When I’m not at Blue Blaze, I love to follow my New York Sports teams and spend time with my family enjoying the lifestyle opportunities that living near the beach presents. I have four beautiful daughters who keep my wife and I very busy. Whether it is traveling to Bucknell or Elon to visit my twins in college, or on the sidelines cheering on my daughter’s field hockey team, or watching the youngest one dance and ride her bike, it all leads to the fulfilling life I always wanted.