In the last issue of PLANADVISER, we highlighted some of the nation’s most successful retirement plan advisers in the listing of the PLANADVISER Top 100 Advisers. In this issue, we profile the finalists for PLANSPONSOR’s Retirement Plan Adviser and Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year.
This is the eighth year that PLANSPONSOR has recognized the efforts of the nation’s best retirement plan advisers and the sixth that we have acknowledged the efforts of retirement plan adviser teams.
The process officially will begin the Tuesday after Labor Day, when the nomination process opens. Nominations are solicited online from retirement plan advisers (self-nominations are not permitted), from their employers and/or broker/dealers and plan sponsors, as well as from working partners of these advisers including investment vendors, accountants, attorneys and pension administrators.
Once advisers are nominated, they are invited to fill out an online form providing various details about their practice. While it is an honor to be nominated, advisers can only be part of the PLANADVISER Top 100 or eligible for the PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year awards if they take the time to provide the information, online. If initial criteria are met, advisers are asked to complete another form, listing client references. From that group, judges select 10 finalists (five in each category) to compete for the award, and from these select a winner, who is named at the PLANSPONSOR/PLANADVISER Awards for Excellence Dinner in March.
On the pages that follow, we introduce you briefly to the men and women who were chosen this year who demonstrated the quality of leadership and commitment to excellence that have been hallmarks of these awards. That commitment is evidenced by the impact these advisers have had on participation rates, deferrals, asset allocation and a better understanding and appreciation of these programs. It is striking how committed they are, as a group, to creatively applying the tools embedded in the Pension Protection Act—automatic enrollment, accelerated deferrals, asset-allocated default funds—and yet how equally committed they are to helping plan sponsors and participants make thoughtful, prudent choices, sometimes with one-on-one counsel.
We are honored to play a role in highlighting this year’s finalists and hope you enjoy getting to know them.
—Alison Cooke Mintzer
Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year Judges
Steff Chalk,CEO, Fiduciary Consulting and Governance Group Inc.
Alison Cooke Mintzer,Global Editor-in-Chief, PLANSPONSOR and PLANADVISER
Rick Wedge, Northgate Benefits, 2010 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year
James Worrell, GPS Investment Advisors, 2011 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year
Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year Judges
Steff Chalk, CEO, Fiduciary Consulting and Governance Group Inc.
Phil Fiore, representing FDG Advisors of UBS, 2011 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year
Ryan Gardner,representing Fiduciary Investment Advisors LLC, 2009 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year
Alison Cooke Mintzer, Global Editor-in-Chief, PLANSPONSOR and PLANADVISER
Doug Prince, representing The Price Group of Stifel Nicolaus, 2010 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year