May – June 2012

2012 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year

Stace Hilbrant, managing director of 401k Advisors LLC in Wilmette, Illinois, takes pride in his business’s face-to-face client service model. Hilbrant’s firm was one of the original founding firms of 401k Advisors USA, which was later renamed National Retirement Partners before being acquired by LPL Financial in 2010. In 2003, he incorporated in suburban Chicago as 401k Advisors LLC and sold his first 401(k) plan advisory services to D.A. Stuart Company, which makes products for the aluminum manufacturing industry. “I have that first check stapled to my wall,” he says.

2012 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year

Graystone Consulting–Danvers, Massachusetts, takes a holistic approach to advising retirement plan clients. This involves a combination of plan management, investment management and participant services, says Matthew McLaughlin, senior institutional consultant and financial adviser at the Danvers office of Graystone Consulting, a business of Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC. “All three of those levers have to work together to have an optimum plan, optimum outcomes,” he says.

All in Favor

Americans support maintaining retirement plan tax incentives

Forging Ahead

Making an impact in the wild and wooly world of 3(38) relationships

Guiding Light

How advisers can help sponsors avoid plan audits

Heads Up

Although focus has been on 408(b)(2), now is the time to prepare for 404(a)(5)

Horse to Water

Small-plan advisers who move to a fee-based model find challenges

On Solid Ground

Retirement portfolios look good, yet investors still quaking

On Time

Many Baby Boomers retiring at 65

Pay Check

Employer to pay for failing to monitor RK costs

Small Companies’ Compliance Concerns

Eighty-four percent of professional service firms say compliance with regulations is their top concern when sponsoring retirement plans for their employees.    

Staying on Target

 Helping sponsors decide whether a target-date fund family still works for their plan 

Talking Points


Tired of giving the same old presentations? Use these nuggets of information to spruce them up.

Tall Order

DCIO firms look to differentiate themselves with value-added services

Top of the Heap

"Each year we find new names and faces within this process, advisers who we enjoy getting to know, whether through speaking at or attending our conferences, through email exchanges or because they become finalists for the awards. I hope that continues, and that we get a chance to know you—and your practices—even better this year."

What You Need to Know About… Pinterest for Your Business

At first glance, Pinterest looks like a haven for crafty moms, avid cooks and brides-to-be. The rapidly growing social network allows users to create virtual pinboards to collect, organize and share interests, many of them involving food and fashion.