Fidelity's David Canter makes financial advice his Boston Marathon cause

The executive is seeking to raise $100,000 for the CFP Board's Center for Financial Planning

Mar 20, 2017 @ 7:00 am

By Jeff Benjamin

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David Canter, the newly appointed head of the RIA segment at Fidelity Custody & Clearing Solutions, will be running next month's Boston Marathon with the financial planning industry top of mind.

Mr. Canter, 48, has named the CFP Board's Center for Financial Planning as his charity for the race, and he aims to raise $100,000 in donations by race day.

"The Center has been supportive in bringing young people into the profession," he said. "That's an issue we all have to care about if we want a sustainable and thriving financial planning profession."

The 26.2-mile race on April 17 will be Mr. Canter's fourth consecutive Boston Marathon, and his ninth marathon over the past 20 years.

With his sub-four-hour race times, it is possible that Mr. Canter could qualify for the Boston based on his running abilities, but so far he has only run the historic race on "charity bibs," which race organizers give to businesses and organizations as fund-raising vehicles.

Mr. Canter's entry this year came by way of John Hancock Financial Services, a 30-year sponsor of the 120-year-old race.

"John Hancock had a charity bib, and all they needed was a runner, so I figured, 'why not me?'" said Mr. Canter, who works closely with Todd Cassler, president of institutional distribution at John Hancock Investments, to help support the CFP Board's efforts to promote the financial planning industry.

"As a leader within the financial services community, we're pleased that the CFP Board Center is using this opportunity to raise awareness and funds in support of their mission," Mr. Cassler said.

Mr. Canter officially kicked off his fundraising efforts dubbed 'Run, David, Run' in mid-February and has already raised $35,000, much of which has come through donor-advised funds.

The donations are being collected through a crowdfunding website, which currently shows less than $8,000 collected, but Mr. Canter said that is due to a lag period in moving money from the donor-advised funds to the fund-raising site.

The Center for Financial Planning, of which Mr. Canter is a member of the advisory council and on the campaign development committee, was established in November 2015 through an initial donation from TD Ameritrade.

While the Center has received some seed funding from the CFP Board to finance the fundraising efforts, the Center is financially independent from the CFP Board, according to Marilyn Mohrman-Gillis, the Center's executive director.

The Center, which is focused on a several initiatives related to bringing more diversity to the financial planning industry, is about halfway through a three-year campaign to raise $10 million, $6.2 million of which has already been raised.

"The Center stands at a unique crossroads in the profession," Ms. Mohrman-Gillis said. "Through its relationships with firms, education partners, researchers, practitioners and other stakeholders, the Center is able to serve as a convener to tackle the challenges we face. With David's help, we will be able to continue to forge partnerships to support research and initiatives designed to advance the profession to benefit the public."

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