Stephen Besse left Morgan Stanley for Raymond James & Associates after 20 years.

Raymond James (RJF) said early Monday that it recruited advisor Stephen Besse, CFP, from Morgan Stanley.

Besse, has joined Raymond James’ employee channel in Walnut Creek, Calif., outside San Francisco, with about $360 million in client assets and annual fees and commissions of $1.35 million.

 “Stephen’s extensive experience, his passion and professionalism are a wonderful addition to our Walnut Creek branch,” said Nathan Clakley, the Northern California complex manager for Raymond James & Associates, in a press release.

“He, like a growing number of veteran advisors in the Bay Area, took the time to explore and understand the unique Raymond James story: our client-first culture, tremendous resources and support for advisors.”

In 1994, Besse followed his father into a career as a financial advisor at Smith Barney. When his father retired, Besse began serving his father’s clients as well as his own.

“After being at one firm for 20 years,” said Besse in a statement, “the decision to make a change was not made without significant thought and due diligence. For me, the culture, the focus on serving individual investors and the firm’s financial strength made Raymond James the right fit for my practice.”

Merrill Rep Joins Indie Washington Wealth

Washington Wealth Management, an independent hybrid RIA, said last week that advisor Matthew Griffith moved to the firm from Merrill Lynch in March. The industry veteran had been with Merrill since 2000 and has about $75 million in client assets.

“We are very excited to help Matt realize the benefits of independence and position his business for further growth by joining Washington Wealth Management,” said Rob Bartenstein, CEO of Washington Wealth Management, said, in a statement.

“We’ve known Matt for a long time, since our days together at Merrill Lynch in Washington, D.C., so it’s particularly thrilling to bring someone aboard who we’ve watched grow and develop into one of the best young advisors in the business,” Bartenstein explained.

San Diego-based Washington Wealth is a wholly owned subsidiary of NFP Advisor Services.