Cliff has 30 years of experience in personal financial services, as well as corporate financial management. Since 1976 he has held positions that required a high level of trust from employers, employees, and the clients he served directly and indirectly.
For more than 10 years, he held senior financial positions with Shawmut Bank, Connecticut National Bank and Hartford National Bank, progressing to Vice President and Senior Financial Officer for the four divisions comprising the Personal Banking Group. Cliff got in on the ground floor of contemporary financial planning in the Banking Industry by developing the first computerized financial planning, forecasting and branch profitability models used by these financial institutions.
Cliff was also responsible for delivering personal and small business financial services through as many as 23 branches offices. He led the introduction of mutual funds through branches as an alternative to traditional banking services, and is intimately familiar with the needs of both these markets, and how prudent financial and investment advice make a positive difference.
Education And Training
Cliff’s experience is reinforced by the education he received from an undergraduate degree in Economics, a graduate degree in Finance and a graduate level Certificate of Financial Planning. He is a Certified Financial Planner™, having completed the education, examination and experience requirements to earn this highly regarded designation. He is bound by the Practice Standards and Code of Ethics of the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards.
As a Registered Investment Advisor Representative, Cliff brings three critical elements to client relationships: Trust, Loyalty and Disclosure. Trust that you are receiving objective advice, and that the specifics of your relationship are held in the strictest confidence. Loyalty to only you, the client, putting your interests and needs ahead of any other considerations, and not being swayed by product and service providers to recommend their solutions. Disclosure that ensures every client understands how their financial advisor is being compensated, and whether or not any conflicts exist that may cause a problem with an advisor’s ability to provide truly independent and objective advice. These three elements are often referred to as a Fiduciary Standard of Care.
Complementing his experience and training, Cliff has dedicated himself during the past 20 years to numerous non-profit organizations. He has served on many of these Boards of Directors in the capacity of President, Treasurer, and Investment Committee member. Some of these organizations include Rideworks of Greater New Haven, Shoreline Alliance for the Arts, Dutchess County Mental Health Association, Habitat for Humanity, and Alderhouse Residential Services. Currently he serves on the Board of Directors of Middlesex United Way and President Emeritus of St. Luke’s Elder Care Solutions. Cliff is also a member of Rotary International.
Professionally, Cliff served on the Board of the Financial Planning Association’s Connecticut Valley Chapter, one of three chapters in Connecticut. The Financial Planning Association is the largest professional association representing financial planning professionals in the United States. He is also a member of the Alliance of Comprehensive Planners, the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors, and the Central Connecticut Business and Estate Planning Council.
This experience, training and service allow Cliff to provide you with advice that comes from extensive knowledge and hands-on experience, as a result of being deeply involved in the financial planning professional community. It gives him the ability to provide you with the analytical, planning and creative problem solving skills that can only be developed from first-hand experience of the ups and downs of economic and market cycles. Cliff is an advisor who helps clients make sense out of an increasing complex financial world.
Cliff is a fee-only advisor, focusing on advice, not sales. Many financial advisors receive commissions and fees from insurance and mutual fund companies for selling their financial products.
This makes it hard for you to know how much you are truly paying for their services. As a fee-only advisor, Cliff’s fees are the only compensation he receives. He has no allegiance to any insurance or mutual fund companies, or any specific financial products. This commission-free philosophy eliminates any conflicts of interest that may be caused by other methods of compensation. It is one more step in providing total transparency to all aspects of his professional relationship with his clients. Cliff reminds prospective clients that…”Salespeople usually charge a commission….Advisors charge a fee.”
Going Beyond The Numbers
Lastly, Cliff goes beyond the numbers. s a client, you become an active and involved partner in the development of your Lifestyle Financial Plan. He is focused on your goals and values, while addressing your immediate priorities. Your input is a key ingredient to the strategies selected. You maintain control of your investment choices and approve all changes to your investment portfolio. Your goals and financial choices are treated with the respect, dignity and compassion they deserve. Cliff engages his clients in open, honest, and non-judgmental conversations about the current and future implications of their financial choices.
Financial Planning is just as much about relationships as it is dollars and cents. What is really critical is that you have a relationship built on shared values, respect and compassion. Many advisors focus on their technical expertise at the expense of building a meaningful relationship with clients. One of Cliff’s mentors told him, “Nobody will care about what you know, until they know that you care,” and this is one of his strongest core beliefs.
As a smaller advisory practice, Cliff provides the personalized service that is often absent from larger firms. You have periodic meetings to ensure your financial plan and investment portfolio are meeting your needs and moving you toward your goals. When issues arise, you can count on him being only a phone call or e-mail away. Cliff makes every effort to respond to all client calls and e-mails on the day they are received.