Dick Averitt, who retired as CEO of Raymond James’ (RJF) independent-advisor channel on Monday, was recognized at a Chairman’s Council event on Thursday night in Orlando.
“I want to thank Dick for his service—besides being a great leader and CEO he is just a great human being,” said Paul Reilly, CEO of Raymond James Financial, the parent company of the independent and other channels, in a statement. “We wish him and [his wife] Sandi all the very best.”
Averitt remains chairman of the independent channel through 2013, and the daily operations of the organization are now led by President Scott Curtis.
In his remarks on Monday, Averitt described his positive outlook for both the firm and the nation. “We do not have to live in fear of scarcity when there is such hope of abundance,” he said.
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Now 67, he joined Raymond James (then Investment Management & Research) in 1978 as an advisor from Merrill Lynch. In April 2002, Averitt took the reins from Tony Green as head of the independent-advisor channel.
The executive explained that he’d considered getting out of the business when he was in his mid-30s and realized that he wasn’t “driven to make money.” A natural problem solver, he chose instead to focus on his desire to help solve problems, including the portfolio issues facing a paraplegic client. “By working on his investments, this allowed him to—over about 30 years—to live a life better than he’d ever expected,” Averitt said.