Advisor recruiting in '15 is on a tear.

Dynasty Financial Partners says a former Morgan Stanley (MS) team of advisors with about $800 million has gone independent and affiliated with its wealth management network.

In addition, Raymond James (RJF) has announced its latest recruits, which include groups from Ameriprise Financial and Baird and an advisor from Edward Jones; collectively, the new reps have nearly $840 million in client assets and over $4 million in yearly fees & commissions. 

According to Dynasty, Scott Highmark and Larry Shikles, who have been with Morgan Stanley Wealth Management since 2009, are working with Jim Steiner, a rep who was with Morgan Stanley since 2013, and several other team members. Together, they recently formed Mosaic Family Wealth in St. Louis.

“At Dynasty, we have noticed a trend toward significantly larger advisory teams choosing independence in order to best serve their clients,” said Shirl Penney, CEO of Dynasty Financial Partners, in a statement on Friday.

Highmark and Shikles each have about 20 years in the financial services industry. Highmark joined Morgan Stanley in 2006 and prior to that was with A.G. Edwards from 1996 to 2006, while Shikles joined Citigroup in 1994 and was integrated into Morgan Stanley via its merger with Smith Barney.

“At Mosaic Family Wealth, we are transforming an established wealth management and investment advisory practice into an independent firm with greater transparency and expanded capabilities for our clients,” said Highmark, in a press release.

“Our clients are leaders in the business community and civic life of St. Louis and have spent their careers as entrepreneurs, executives and business owners,” he explained. “We share that entrepreneurial spirit and are now well-positioned to help them achieve their long-term potential.”

Raymond James’ News

Raymond James said Friday that it added a team of three advisors in Irvine, California, and Boulder, Colorado, from Amerprise Financial (AMP): Ty Rogers, Donald Furuya and John Fleishman.

“With their years of experience and a commitment to a long-term, client-first approach, they are a great addition both to our new Irvine office and to the Boulder community,” said Jerry Conn, Newport Beach complex manager for Raymond James & Associates (RJA) – the firm’s traditional employee broker-dealer, in a press release on Friday.

The team operates as the Rogers Group of Raymond James. It has collectively managed client assets of roughly $140 million and had annual yearly fees and commissions of more than $1.2 million.

“We are all very excited to be here at Raymond James,” said Rogers, senior vice president of investments, in a statement. “It is a private client-focused firm that does not dictate to its advisors how to run their business or what products and services to recommend to our clients.”

Rogers, who has been in the business for 24 years — including time as a Smith Barney rep — added: “We really liked the idea of controlling our own destiny and were particularly impressed with the marketing support and sophistication we can utilize.”

On Wednesday, Raymond James said it recruited another team to its employee channel: Samuel Gross, CFP; Joseph Brady; and Tonya Ann Rasmussen, CFA, who come on board in Chicago.

The team operates as GBR Wealth Management Group of Raymond James and joins the firm from William Blair & Co., where they managed more than $524 million in client assets and had annual production that topped $2 million.

“They combine that commitment to service with exceptional talent, market knowledge and deep experience to form one of the top teams in the city,” according to Brian Lampsa, Greater Chicago area complex manager, in a statement.

Gross began his financial services career in 1985 with Legg Mason. He then spent eight years with Alex. Brown and its successor firm Deutsche Bank-Alex. Brown before moving to William Blair in 2004.

“Speaking on behalf of our team,” said Gross in a press release, “I am thrilled to be affiliated with a firm of Raymond James’ size, quality, reputation and private client focus.”

An almost four-decade veteran of the financial services industry, Brady began his career in 1977 with Dean Witter, and joined William Blair in 1985.

Rasmussen, an associate financial advisor, is a chartered financial analyst and served as a portfolio investment specialist at William Blair for over 10 years.

Earlier in February, the firm’s independent channel, Raymond James Financial Services, recruited Billy Belcher near Houston from Edward Jones.

Belcher operates as Belcher Wealth Management and has managed more than $175 million in client assets with annual production of over $900,000.

“After 27 years as an employee advisor,” said Belcher in a statement, “the time was just right for me to be independent.” The rep says “an old friend” who moved from Edward Jones to Raymond James about 25 years ago “had been telling me how satisfied he was and what a great firm it was – and after much due diligence, I made the move.”

Belcher joined Edward Jones in 1987.

Other Recent Recuits

SagePoint Financial, part of the AIG-owned group of independent broker-dealers, said last week that one of its teams had added an advisor in Southern California.

ICM Private Client Group hired Brandon Cass as a partner and wealth advisor in Carlsbad. Cass has more than 10 years of experience in the financial services. Earlier he was with Crowell, Weedon and Co., a division of D.A. Davidson & Co., and managed $65 million in assets for the firm.

“Advisors who thrive at SagePoint Financial have an entrepreneurial spirit and they operate with a client-focused mentality,” said Jeff Auld, president and CEO, in a press release. “We are thrilled to have Brandon join our team because he has both of these qualities and his skillset is a great fit for the ICM Private Client Group.”

SagePoint Financial has over $25 billion in total account assets and nearly 1,700 affiliated independent advisors. It is based in Phoenix.

“Joining ICM Private Client Group is a fantastic opportunity because the firm’s corporate culture is predicated on integrity and it places clients’ needs first,” said Cass, in a statement. “Also, having support from a trusted name like SagePoint Financial and being able to access its cutting-edge technology and products helps advisors provide outstanding client experiences.”

In other news, Convergent Wealth Advisors in New York says David Kelman joined it from Next Capital Management. He also has worked for Bear Stearns, Donaldson Lukfin & Jenrette and Credit Suisse First Boston.

“The Convergent wealth advisory story is exciting. I am eager to bring our holistic planning and sophisticated investment capabilities to current clients and new prospects. It is a wealth management solution designed for savvy people,” said Kelman in a statement.

Convergent Wealth Advisors has some $8.6 billion in assets. It is owned by Convergent Capital Management, a subsidiary of City National Corporation.

— Check out Advisor Headcount Falls 5 Years in a Row: Cerulli on ThinkAdvisor.