The announcement was made last night at the PLANSPONSOR and PLANADVISER 2008 Awards for Excellence dinner. Barry, with JMB Wealth Management/National Planning Corporation, and FFoA, an NRP Member Firm, were selected from close to 500 nominations.
“The retirement security of millions of Americans depends on 401(k) and other employer-sponsored programs, and most of these plans today rely on the skills and presence of a financial adviser,” said Nevin Adams, Editor-in-Chief of PLANSPONSOR. “These awards recognize the contributions of the nation’s best financial advisers, who help make retirement security a reality for workers across the nation.”
Barry’s enthusiasm for helping others is palpable—and contagious. “When you have a plan that has grown over the years and you see in the audience those factory workers you sat down with three years ago talking proudly about how they have saved toward their retirement, you know you’ve done something right,” commented Barry. More importantly, his clients say it works: “He absolutely has made a very positive effect on participants and the plan. We are seeing increases [in enrollment and deferral rates],” comments one.
The other finalists for the 2008 individual Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year award were Gregg Andonian, Baystate Fiduciary Advisors, Inc., a Member Firm of NRP, Milford, Massachusetts; John Leeson, Investment Research & Advisory Group, Inc., Atlanta, Georgia; Tom Noble, Noble Retirement Group, a Member Firm of NRP, Sugar Land, Texas; and James Sampson, Telamon Insurance & Financial Network, Newton, Massachusetts.
FFoA, led by President Barbara Delaney, stood out among the field of finalists for receiving a record number of nominations from clients, provider partners, third-party administrators (TPAs), CPAs, and others. “I believe the reason our clients have been so loyal to our firm is we really do care. We have developed relationships that go beyond business to friendship and mutual respect,” explained Delaney about why her average client has been with her for more than a decade.
Other finalists for PLANSPONSOR’s Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year were CAPTRUST Financial Advisors (advisers Mark Medlin, Mike Hudson), Raleigh, North Carolina; Heffernan Financial Services, a Member Firm of NRP (John Prichard Sr., Blake Thibault), San Francisco, California; The Howell & Sharp Group at Merrill Lynch (Brett Howell, Craig Sharp), Grand Rapids, Michigan; and Longfellow Benefits, a Member Firm of NRP (Kendall Storch, Phil LeBlanc, David Boucher, Andrew Hershenow, Adam Miloro), Boston, Massachusetts.
Launched in 2005, the awards recognize the contributions of the nation’s best financial advisers in helping make retirement security a reality for workers across the nation. Nominations for the Retirement Plan Adviser and Adviser Team of the Year awards were solicited online from retirement plan advisers, their employers and/or broker/dealers, and plan sponsors, as well as from working partners of these advisers.
In addition to Adams, the judge’s panel for the award included Steff Chalk, Founder and President of CHALK 401(k) Advisory Board, Inc.; Alison Cooke, Managing Editor of PLANADVISER; Chad Larsen of Moreton Retirement Partners, 2007 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year; John Mott, of Smith Barney, who was 2005 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser of the Year; and Steve Wilt, from The STAR Group at Merrill Lynch, the 2007 PLANSPONSOR Retirement Plan Adviser Team of the Year.