Retirement Industry People Moves

Cetera announces additional teams and roles; Principal adds multiple sales team members; Schroders hires sales directors for regional teams; and more.

Art by Subin Yang

Cetera Announces Additional Teams and Roles

Cetera has added new teams and roles to its network.

The teams will be led by Elisa Del Valle and Craig Markham, who have been promoted to adviser growth officers, in addition to Malissa Lischin.

Kim Holweger has been promoted to head of operations. Holweger has 34 years of experience in service roles at Cetera and will be expanding oversight across operations teams.

Jon Rothenberg has been promoted to head of adviser experience and service. He will focus on creating a streamlined and simplified experience for advisers from account opening to training to the delivery of intuitive technology.

Additional roles focused on growth include the appointment of Tim Stinson, head of wealth management. Stinson oversees sales and consulting support of advisory platforms and investment solutions.

Bob Doolittle has joined the firm as head of enterprise engineering. He brings 20 years of financial services experience focused on operationalizing and transforming processes, technologies and practices.

Principal Adds Multiple Sales Team Members

Principal has announced a slew of new promotions and hires to its sales team.

Stephen “Rob” Kerscher and Joseph “Joe” Carew have been promoted to vice presidents of distribution.

Kerscher began his career in Columbus, Ohio, with Nationwide and then spent the most recent 11 years with Prudential Retirement as a large market key account director and regional sales director, primarily serving the Ohio and Michigan markets. Kerscher earned his bachelor’s degree in business from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and his master’s degree from Franklin University in Columbus. 

Carew brings 30 years of retirement industry recordkeeping experience to Principal Financial Group. He spent the past 11 years with Empower Retirement as a core market regional sales director serving the New Jersey and metro New York markets. Prior to that, he was a regional director for Hartford and regional vice president for John Hancock. He earned his bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Plattsburgh and his master’s degree in finance from the American University in Washington, D.C.

Additional 2020 sales hires include Anthony Gomez, director; Carlos Lopez, director; Daniel Dekat, director; Dustin Pugh, vice president; Erin Walters, director; Francis “Frank” Randall, director; Gress Lawson, director; John Maury, director; Kristina Baumann, director; Michael “Ryan” Madsen, director; Mykal Davis, director; Nancy Evans, director; Orlando Russo, director; and Ryan Lang, director.

Schroders Hires Sales Directors for Regional Teams

Schroders Investment Management North America Inc. (Schroders) has announced two hires to its sales team.

Brett Ritter has been announced as the sales director for Schroders’ sub-advisory business covering the central part of the United States.

Prior to joining Schroders, he was the eastern regional director for Weitz Investment Management. He was responsible for the service, growth and expansion of the retail investment market on the East Coast. He focused his efforts on consulting with financial advisers to deliver Weitz Investment’s strongest capabilities on business development, practice management, marketing, capital markets and positioning of Weitz Investment products. 

He also held positions as an internal wholesaler with MetLife Investors and Pacific Life on their respective annuity teams for more than seven years and covered wirehouse, bank and independent advisers during his tenure. Additionally, he worked for Wells Fargo as a retirement consultant and as an annuity product expert.

Ritter has a bachelor’s degree in international business and Japanese, as well as a master’s degree from Nebraska Wesleyan University. He also holds his chartered financial consultant (ChFC), certified life underwriter (CLU) and certified retirement counselor (CRC) designations from The American College of Financial Services and the International Foundation for Retirement Education (InFRE).

Max Most will be the sales director for the company’s sub-advisory business covering the East Coast.

Prior to joining Schroders, he was the associate regional director for the New York metro region at Russell Investments. From 2014 to 2020, Most was responsible for the service, growth and expansion of the retail investment market in New York City, Long Island, northern New Jersey and southern Connecticut regions.

Most has also held positions as internal wholesaler with SunAmerica Asset Management as well as relationship banker at JPMorgan Chase.

He holds a bachelor’s degree in communication from Old Dominion University.

Former Principal Joins Cohen & Buckmann as Senior Counsel

Elizabeth Drigotas, a former principal in the Washington National Tax of Deloitte Tax LLP and attorney-advisor in the Office of Benefits Tax Counsel of the United State Treasury Department, has joined New York-based executive compensation and employee benefits law firm Cohen & Buckmann, P.C., as senior counsel.

Drigotas’s practice focuses on executive compensation and benefits plan design.  She has more than 25 years of experience working with compensation and benefits plan design and implementation, with an emphasis on related tax issues. Her clients encompass private and public employers, including multinational and Fortune 100 companies, as well as tax-exempt entities.  A significant part of her practice involves advising financial services clients on partnership compensation, and she has extensive experience working on strategic acquisitions and private equity transactions.

 “I have known Elizabeth for many years and am excited to add such a skilled and respected attorney to our practice,” says Sandra Cohen, managing partner of Cohen& Buckmann. “Elizabeth’s experience at the U.S. Treasury and Deloitte has afforded her an incredibly deep understanding of this nuanced area of the law so that she is able to provide clients pragmatic solutions, and often simplifies the most complex issues for them.”

At Deloitte, Drigotas focused on nonqualified deferred and equity compensation, often within the context of mergers and acquisitions.

Earlier in her career, she worked at the U.S. Treasury as an attorney-advisor in the Office of Benefits Tax Counsel, where she provided advice and counsel to the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service on policies and laws and their related regulations, such as Section 280G, also known as Golden Parachute Regulations; the Economic Growth and Tax Reconciliation Relief Act; and proposals that led to Section 409A, which regulates nonqualified deferred compensation, among others.

Drigotas earned her juris doctor degree from the University of North Carolina School of Law and her master of public health degree from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health.

SMArtX Selects President and COO

SMArtX Advisory Solutions (SMArtX) has hired Jonathan Pincus as SMArtX’s new president and chief operating officer (COO).

Pincus joins SMArtX from Northern Trust, where he most recently held the position of senior vice president, global head of investment operations for its Asset Management division. He formerly held the role of chief operating officer for Northern Trust’s Managed Accounts business.

Pincus also previously worked at Bloomberg and formerly held his Series 7, 65, and 63. He has served on a number of fintech firm advisory boards and is an industry thought leader on operational scale and business enablement.

“We are pleased to welcome Jonathan to the SMArtX leadership team and fortunate to have someone of his caliber steering this critical function across our business,” says Evan Rapoport, CEO of SMArtX. “Jonathan’s deep domain expertise in banking, innovation and large-scale deployment makes him the perfect person for the role as we continue to drive new enterprise growth and mobilize technology at scale for this segment.”

“I am looking forward to joining SMArtX at such an exciting time in the company’s evolution,” Pincus said. “The need for technology, tools and transparency to function flawlessly has never been more important. I have reviewed countless asset management platforms throughout my career, and none come close to the abilities that SMArtX offers. In creating advanced tools to manage assets across enterprise networks, they completely streamline the middle and back-office systems in a way that is unprecedented in our industry.”

Pincus will join SMArtX Advisory Solutions in its West Palm Beach, Florida, headquarters.

Heartland Retirement Plan Services Hires Business Development Leader

Heartland Retirement Plan Services has added Ray Jambois as retirement plan services (RPS) business development officer. His responsibilities include implementing sales strategies and providing retirement plan services to current and prospective clients in the Midwest region, particularly in the Minnesota, Wisconsin and Kansas/Missouri markets.

Jambois has over 25 years of experience in the retirement planning industry, which includes working with business owners and executive staff in evaluating plan design and compliance, fund reviews and overall plan structure. Throughout his career, he has focused on territory development, establishing and maintaining strong adviser relationships and point of sales (POS) presentations.

Prior to joining Heartland RPS, Jambois worked at Lincoln Financial Group, where he most recently served as regional vice president, sales director. He holds FINRA Series 6, 63 and 65 licenses.