NEW YEAR’S WISHES
As we look back over 2020, this year has turned out very differently than we expected at the start. As the world has slowed down to keep everyone safe, Morton Capital has continued its work to bring an essential service to our clients and community. As you’ll see from the highlights below, we are more dedicated than ever when it comes to our team and our clients. We would like to thank you for allowing us to continue to be part of your story, especially during such a challenging time.
MC TEAM AND GROWTH
In 2020, initiatives around hiring, team development, and firm growth continued to be a focus.
- MC was named one of the Best Places to Work for Financial Advisors by Investment News for the second year in a row. This list highlights the top 75 firms nationwide in the financial advice industry.
- We implemented our Employee Value Proposition, a commitment by MC and its team members to create an organization full of meaning and purpose and that champions our core values.
- We launched our Mentor/Mentee program, which pairs team members across the firm to provide support and development around such skills as leadership, presentation skills, and written communication.
- We held our first Core Values Awards, highlighting team members who exemplify each of our five core values.
- This year, we began working more closely with Talia Jacqueline of Visceral Impact to help with team development and to teach us about the psychology of communication.
- MC hired talented new people across several teams, including the advisory, compliance, client service and private investments teams. New hires included:
- Brian Mann (Wealth Advisor), Mollie Privett (CFP®, Client Service Associate), Thao Truong (CFP®, Associate Wealth Advisor), Sherry Uchuion (Compliance Administrator), Jessica Hull (Client Service Administrator), Cameron Meek (Client Service Administrator), Trent Paddon (Client Service Administrator), Lauren Salas (Private Investments Administrator), and Judy Lee (Private Investments Administrator)
- Across the firm, leaders met with team members to discuss individual, personalized career path timelines, for a total of 45 firm-wide.
- Advancements through those career path timelines included:
- Menachem Striks (Chief Compliance Officer), Sarah Ellis (Client Experience Manager), Dan Charoenrath (Director of Operations), Olivia Payne (Associate Wealth Advisor), Chris Wahl (Associate Wealth Advisor), Benjamin Markman (Trader), Elana Yaffe (Financial Planning Associate), Edward Garcia (Paraplanner), Patrick Garcia (Fund Relationship Manager), Moriah Bowles (Client Service Technical Specialist), Austin Overholt (Client Service Administrator), Kierstan Lewis (Private Investments Administrator)
- We enhanced leadership development initiatives and the number of team retreats.
- Two of our team members became new partners in the firm: Wealth Advisor Chris Galeski and Chief Compliance Officer Menachem Striks.
- Through the hard work and dedication of our team, we were able to add 40 new client households to the MC community. We now manage over 1,000 client households and surpassed $2 billion in assets under management (AUM).
- Three team members welcomed beautiful babies Aila (Chris Galeski), Anderson (Carly Powell), and Presley (Patrick Garcia) this year.
INVESTMENT RESEARCH, FINANCIAL PLANNING, AND WEALTH AND LEGACY PLANNING
We work diligently behind the scenes to source great investment opportunities for our clients. To give you a peek behind the curtain, this year:
- Our investments team had over 180 calls on new potential investment opportunities.
- Out of all the new strategies reviewed, we introduced 3 new strategies.
- Our CIO, Meghan Pinchuk, and our investment research, private investments, and portfolio management teams collaborated on an “Investment Approach” video that highlights the core tenets of our investment philosophy.
Financial planning and wealth and legacy planning are key ingredients to helping our clients get the most life out of their wealth, and we continually work, year after year, to refine and expand our planning offerings. This year, we:
- Introduced a five-month-long Paraplanner training program to provide a strong foundation for our Paraplanners, both those staying on the Financial Planning Team career path and for those moving along the advisory team career path.
- Expanded our Financial Planning and Wealth and Legacy Planning Teams to five members.
- Reviewed and completed over 250 financial plans.
- Completed over 130 Wealth and Legacy Planning meetings with Wealth Planner Brian Standing.
- Held 48 education sessions for our team members around estate planning, insurance, tax strategies, and retirement planning.
MC IN THE COMMUNITY
Earlier this year, as a result of a company-wide innovation tournament, we formed an internal committee dedicated to pursuing charitable initiatives in the community. Our team members at MC feel passionately about giving back to the community, not just financially but also with our time and energy. Here are a few of our 2020 charitable initiatives:
- Community Give Back – We were able to help 22 individuals/families with complimentary financial planning advice at a time when many are having to make extremely hard financial decisions.
- Get Moving Fitness Challenge – In November, we chose Feeding America as the recipient of our first-ever fitness challenge for charity. Every time a team member exercised for 30 minutes, MC donated $5. We are excited to report that our team members were active 532 times, logging more than 250 hours and raising $2,660!
- Holiday care packages – In December, we collected non-perishables, toiletries, and other supplies to send to the military overseas. We were able to send over 150 holiday care packages this year.
INDUSTRY RECOGNITION, ENHANCEMENT, AND EDUCATION
Education is incredibly important to us at MC, as is enhancing our offering through technology and marketing initiatives. We are also pleased to share below how our firm and team members are making an impact in the financial services industry.
- MC was named one of the top 200 RIAs in Financial Advisor magazine’s 2020 Annual RIA Ranking (which includes a total of 551 firms that are ranked based on their year-end AUM).
- At Charles Schwab’s virtual IMPACT 2020 conference, MC and our CEO, Jeff Sarti, were featured as one of four firms Schwab chose to highlight based on the impact they’re making in the industry.
- Senior Vice President and partner Joe Seetoo was named to San Fernando Valley Business Journal’s “Valley 200” list of most influential business and community leaders.
- In addition to receiving industry accolades, our team members actively sought out opportunities to share our knowledge across several types of media.
- White papers and articles by our COO, Stacey McKinnon:
- The New RIA Workplace: Will COVID-19 Change the Way We Work Forever?, co-authored with PFI Advisors CEO Matt Sonnen
- “Adapting Advisory Teams to a Hybrid Office/Home Workplace: Leadership, Culture, and Infrastructure for the New RIA Workplace,” featured on Michael Kitces’s Nerd’s Eye View blog, and also co-written with Matt Sonnen
- Features in industry publications:
- Wealth Advisor and partner Kevin Rex in the San Fernando Valley Business Journal, “Meet Your Clients on Their Emotional Level”
- Podcast features:
- CEO Jeff Sarti on The Sharkpreneur Podcast, “Growing to $2 Billion AUM”
- Senior Vice President and partner Joe Seetoo on Exit Coach Radio Show, “An Integrated Approach to Exit Planning”
- COO Stacey McKinnon
- Michael Kitces’s Financial Advisor Success Podcast, “Scaling an Advisory Firm by Finding New Talent Outside the Financial Services Industry”
- Kate Holmes’s The Innovating Advice Show, “A Unique Approach to Hiring and the Positive Impact That Can Have on the World”
- White papers and articles by our COO, Stacey McKinnon:
- Virtual conferences:
- COO Stacey McKinnon’s “Good to Great” presentation at Bob Veres’s virtual 2020 Insider’s Forum
- In addition to being featured on industry forums and at conferences, MC hosted our own live webinars for the first time this year.
- CEO Jeff Sarti and CIO Meghan Pinchuk presented market review webinars over the past four quarters.
- Our advisory team hosted our six-part “Staying Connected During COVID-19” webinar series.
- We launched MC’s social media presence, writing hundreds of posts over the course of this year, including advisor-written articles, our This Is Wealth series, and book stack posts of what our team has been reading.
- To support our increased use of home offices and virtual client meetings, we expanded our technology infrastructure to include Zoom’s cloud-based phone service and the appointment scheduling software Calendly.
- We updated our reporting process to shift to more on-demand access of portfolio performance through our online client portals rather than traditional quarterly performance reviews.
- In February, we closed out our popular Financial Bites educational lunch series.
- Our team members continued to work towards increasing their knowledge by obtaining additional certifications that enhance our offering.
- Series 65 license (wealth management): Olivia Payne, Benjamin Markman, and Chris Wahl
- CFP® certification (financial planning): Mollie Privett
Even in such a challenging year, it has been important to us to continue to pursue knowledge and growth to become even better stewards of our clients’ wealth. This year, more than ever, we feel truly grateful for your continued confidence in us and wish you and your family a happy, and healthy, new year.
Here’s to a brighter year ahead.
Your Morton Team