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Industry Spotlight > Women in Wealth

Raymond James Adds Complex Managers, FAs From Wirehouses

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The employee advisor channel of Raymond James Financial (RJF) said Monday it hired three complex managers from UBS (UBS) and Wells Fargo (WFC) to support its growth efforts.

In addition, Raymond James & Associates recently recruited a team of two female advisors in California from Morgan Stanley (MS) with about $140 million in client assets and annual fees and commissions of $1.1 million. Meanwhile, the independent advisor group Raymond James Financial Services added an advisor in Wheaton, Illinois, from BKD Wealth Advisors, where he previously managed some $130 million in client assets and had about $1.3 million in annual production.

“It’s exciting to have such experienced and proven managers as … all [three] decide[d] the time was right for them to join the Raymond James team and help us continue our expansions in the Northeast and Midwest,” said Tash Elwyn, president of RJA, in a statement. “We look forward to supporting their efforts and offering and extending our firm’s culture, technology and high level of service to advisors in each of their respective markets.”

The new complex managers include Judson Potter, CFP, who will be based in Westport, Connecticut. He moved to Raymond James from UBS, where he was a financial advisor, branch manager and complex manager during his time with the firm.

Most recently, Potter oversaw 40-plus advisors with $4.5 billion in client assets under management. He began his financial services career in 1992 with PaineWebber, which was acquired by UBS in 2000.

Christopher Leavy, formerly with Wells Fargo Advisors, has been named the Northern New Jersey complex manager for RJA in Paramus, New Jersey. At Wells Fargo Advisors, he managed more than 65 advisors with some $5 billion in assets.

Leavy entered the industry at Oppenheimer in 1982, moving to PaineWebber in 1990. In 1998, he joined Wheat First, which was folded into Wachovia and later Wells Fargo.

In Wisconsin, Gary Sievewright was hired as RJA’s Wisconsin complex manager and is based temporarily in Brookfield, a suburb of Milwaukee. Sievewright joined from Wells Fargo, where he was the managing director of the Greater Milwaukee market and oversaw seven offices, 95 advisors, client assets of over $8 billion and annual revenues in excess of $65 million.

Sievewright began his financial services career with Merrill Lynch in 1988 and moved to Prudential Securities 10 years later; Prudential merged with Wachovia in 2003.

“It’s wonderful to be at a firm that owns a bank and is not owned by one,” said Sievewright, in a press release. “As many firms in our industry have become subsidiaries of major banks, Raymond James can operate more nimbly than most of its competition while still providing products and services for both sides of a client’s balance sheet.”

These moves follow Raymond James’ announcement in late April that it appointed marketing veteran Michelle Lynch to the role vice president and director of the firm’s Network for Women Advisors. Lynch, who has 11 years of experience with the company’s Private Client Group and Asset Management divisions at Raymond James, will lead the Network for Women Advisors — which includes more than 800 reps — and other diversity initiatives.

Lynch is replacing Nicole Spinelli, who moved to the Lincoln Financial Network (LNC) earlier this year.

“I am honored to represent and support these successful women,” Lynch said, in a statement. “With a solid foundation in place and strong leadership support for the program, I look forward to leveraging my experience to provide our women advisors with unrivaled dedication to meeting their unique needs and increase the growing number of qualified women advisors joining the firm.”

Lynch will report to Elwyn and to Scott Curtis, president of Raymond James Financial Services, which recently held its national development conference in Las Vegas. At the event, the company launched a network for its black financial advisors

New Recruited Reps

Last week, Raymond James said it added the team of Shannon Bennett, CFP, and Vicki Gray, CFP, to its employee broker channel in San Rafael, California, just north of San Francisco.

“We are excited to welcome Shannon and Vicki as founding advisors of our new office in San Rafael,” said Nathan Clakley, RJA’s Northern California complex manager, in a statement. “We anticipate significant growth in the area, and we look forward to introducing advisors throughout Marin and the surrounding counties to Raymond James’ client-focused alternative to traditional wirehouse firms.”

The duo formerly worked for Morgan Stanley, where they previously managed some $140 million in client assets and had annual fees and commissions of about $1.1 million, according to Raymond James.

“We went through a rigorous and deliberate process to select our new home,” said Bennett, in a press release. “Ultimately, Raymond James’ financial strength; its demonstrated commitment to putting the client first; the collaborative environment; a dynamic women’s network that truly contributes to the culture of the firm; and the philosophy that the advisor owns his or her practice made Raymond James the obvious choice.”

Bennett has more than 14 years of industry experience, while Gray has been in the business for over 30 years. Both worked for Citigroup before its Smith Barney operations merged with those of Morgan Stanley.

On the independent side, Raymond James said Roy Cook has joined Sage Private Wealth Group in Illinois.

Cook brings more than 20 years of industry experience to his new role. He began his career with US Bank Asset Management and later worked for Baker Tilly Investment Advisors, Oak Brook Strategic Investment Advisors and Wolf Financial Management.

“We are very happy that Roy is joining the Sage team,” said Khaled Taha, managing partner of Sage, in a press release. “As part of our ongoing commitment to our clients, it is important that we add wealth advisors with the kind of experience and ascending successes Roy has achieved. Sage is quickly approaching $500 million in client assets, and it is important to expand our bandwidth to ensure we are providing our clients with outstanding service at all times.”

“Khaled and his team have a passion for providing a comprehensive wealth management solution and a high level of client service,” stated Cook, also in a release. “I look forward to continuing to serve my clients with the support of the Sage team and Raymond James.”

— Check out Black Financial Advisors Network Launched at Raymond James on ThinkAdvisor.


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