Creative Planning CIO Jim Williams Dies at 46

The CIO was ‘admired by clients and colleagues’ and a ‘devoted husband and father.’

Jim Williams

Creative Planning CIO Jim Williams passed away over the weekend at the age of 46. The CIO had been with Creative Planning for 18 years, based in Leawood, Kansas.

As CIO, Williams contributed to the firm’s investment strategy, the way it managed and traded portfolios, and the investment products and solutions offered to clients, according to the advisory. His work was “instrumental in the success and growth” of the firm,” says Molly Rothove, Creative Planning’s vice president and a wealth manager.

“[Jim] was admired by clients and colleagues for his vast knowledge of markets, investments and the economy and his calm and reassuring demeanor in turbulent times,” Rothove says. “He had a great sense of humor, a deep belief in Creative Planning’s client-centric mission and a vested interest in helping others within the organization succeed.”

The cause of Williams’ death has not been released.

Jamie Battmer, who had been CIO of the retirement services division, will be taking over the role, Rothove says, noting that Battmer had worked closely with Williams. Battmer joined from Creative Planning’s 2021 Lockton acquisition.

Rothove says condolences for Williams have been coming in from colleagues within the organization, as well as clients.

“Jim had a wonderful sense of humor, and he always made sure that people were taken care of and that they were getting everything that they needed,” Rothove says. “He was truly vested in so many people’s individual success.”

Williams, she says, was particularly known for giving time to new employees or those from newly acquired companies to make sure they felt at home and ready to succeed at the firm.

He was also a devoted husband and father, Rothove notes, known for attending his kids’ sporting events and often being “the driver” for his kids and their friends for after-school activities.

Colleagues will be invited to a celebration of Williams’ life at an upcoming date to be determined.