2006 was the 16th year in which Investment Advisor has asked its readers who are representatives of independent broker/dealers to rate their own B/Ds. Those B/Ds who received the highest average rating from their reps were named Broker/Dealer of the Year in four divisions, based on the number of producing reps reported to IA as of April 2006 and published in the magazine’s annual broker/dealer directory in the June issue. In addition, at least 10% of the reported number of producing reps must vote each year to make the broker/dealer eligible for the award. This year, all balloting was conducted online at www.investmentadvisor.com from June 1, 2006, through July 1; a total of 4,813 valid votes were cast. To make their ballots valid, voters were required to insert their personal CRD number and their broker/dealer’s CRD number. They also were required to provide a numerical rating to their broker/dealer in 14 separate categories–from compliance to trading to management to tech support–and give an overall numerical rating. Based on a total possible score per vote of 100, five points were awarded for each of the 14 distinct categories; the overall rating question was given a greater weighting, accounting for 30% of each vote’s total.