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Investment veteran Todd M. Wickwire has been promoted to CEO of Towson, Maryland-based RIA WMS Partners from chief operating officer, the firm said Friday.

The independent wealth planning and investment firm was started in 1993 and manages more than $4 billion in client assets, it said.

Wickwire joined the firm in February as its COO. Before that, he was managing director and, for 20 years, head of U.S. equity research at Wells Fargo, leading a team of 200 professionals, including 50 senior equity analysts advising institutional investors across the U.S. and Europe.

Wickwire also served on several governance committees, including as chairman of the Wells Fargo Transaction Screening Committee and as a voting member of its Underwriting Commitment Committee.

WMS’ “distinct position in the wealth space and impeccable reputation are what initially attracted me to the firm, and I’m honored to be working with such an exceptional group of professionals,” according to Wickwire. “As CEO, I look forward to working with … the entire WMS team as we continue to build a service-centric firm delivering unique planning and investment solutions for our clients,” he said in a statement.

Wickwire’s many “years of experience working in capital markets, institutional brokerage and investment research naturally complement our team and strengthens the firm’s position as the leading wealth advisory firm in the Mid-Atlantic region,” according to Timothy Chase, WMS chairman and co-founder.

“Todd brings a wealth of knowledge from his years leading one of Wall Street’s largest equity research departments,” Chase said in a statement, adding Wickwire’s “vast experience in investment research, information technology, compliance and human capital management will enhance the firm’s strategic and operational initiatives.”

From all of Wickwire’s decades of working in the markets, he’s “developed a vast network of relationships with alternative investment managers and industry experts that we plan to integrate into our private investment platform,” Chase added.

In addition, “beyond his resume, Todd espouses WMS’ core values of authenticity, gratitude and humility, striving for quality and excellence consistent with the work we do for our client families,” according to WMS co-founder Martin Eby.

Todd’s career also included positions in investment banking and institutional equity sales at Alex. Brown & Sons and J.P. Morgan Securities.

Wickwire is also an adjunct professor at the Sellinger School of Business at Loyola University and a board member of the Catch a Lift Fund, a charity that sponsors programs benefiting wounded veterans. He earned an MBA from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and graduated from Franklin & Marshall College with honors and as a member of Phi Beta Kappa, WMS said.