Managing Director, ECHELON Partners
Carolyn Armitage is a Managing Director for ECHELON Partners and has over 29 years of experience being a change management catalyst. She improves market share, profitability, people, processes and team dynamics for RIAs, Broker Dealers and Hybrid RIAs.
Over her distinguished financial services career, Ms. Armitage was an OSJ Branch Manager, a Sales and Marketing Manager for HD Vest Financial Services, a Managing Director for Western International Securities, Head of Advisory Services for ING Advisors Network (Voya) and Head of Enterprise Business Management Consulting for LPL Financial. This extensive experience affords her a rare and valuable command of the wealth advisory and investment management value chains.
Her service expertise includes:
• Strategic business planning, positioning and implementation
• Applying practice management process improvements, effective use of resources and growth strategies to improve firm valuation
• Designing and implementing continuity and succession plans
• Measuring key performance indicators and valuation drivers
• Valuations for wealth and asset management firms
• Succession planning, reading your firm for sale, mergers and acquisitions
• Building high-performance teams and driving measurable results
• Integrating processes and teams
• Mentoring and helping others succeed
• Enhancing communication and relations among team members
• Supporting board members and CEOs as a sounding board and Advisor’s adviser
Ms. Armitage is devoted to continuous learning and improvement. She is LEAN Certified, a Six Sigma Green Belt, a CA Life and Variable Contracts Agent and holds numerous FINRA licenses. She is a CFP® CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER Professional, CIMA® Certified Investment Management Analyst, CLU Chartered Life Underwriter and ChFC Chartered Financial Consultant.
In addition to growing numerous financial services organizations, Ms. Armitage founded and runs a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, True Circle Organization, helping to feed, clothe and improve the lives of homeless people throughout Southern California. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from the University of Minnesota and a Masters in Management from The American College, Bryn Mawr, PA. She resides with her husband in Palos Verdes Estates, CA.
Associate Publisher, InvestmentNews
Mark Bruno is the Associate Publisher at InvestmentNews. He is an award-winning journalist, author and researcher who has written and edited for a number of financial publications over the last decade, including InvestmentNews, Financial Week and Pensions & Investments. Mr. Bruno has been recognized with multiple accolades for his writing and reporting, including the American Business Media's prestigious Jesse H. Neal awards, and has also received awards from The Society of American Business Editors and Writers for his breaking news coverage and analysis of the financial services industry. In his current role as the head of digital and research, InvestmentNews has won multiple awards for its website design and databases, in addition to being named one of the top ten business-to-business websites in the media industry. Mr. Bruno is the author of Save Now or Die Trying: Achieving Long-Term Wealth In Your 20s and 30s, one of the top-selling retirement planning books of 2007. He also been featured frequently on television and radio as an expert on investing and retirement, and has also been quoted in numerous newspapers and magazines, including The Wall Street Journal, The New York Daily News, The Chicago Tribune and Investor's Business Daily.
Founder, Absolute Engagement
Julie Littlechild is a speaker, writer and researcher. Her firm, Absolute Engagement, helps advisors tailor their client experience to support a compelling personal vision for the future.
Julie has worked with and studied successful financial advisors, their clients and their teams for more than twenty years. Prior to founding Absolute Engagement, she launched and ran one of the industry’s leading research firms, focused on client engagement. Julie is the author of a popular blog, the co-host of the Becoming Referable podcast and her first book, The Pursuit of Absolute Engagement, was released in January, 2017.
Julie sat on the national board of the US Financial Planning Association from 2010 – 2013, was twice identified as one of the 25 Most Influential People in Financial Planning by Investment Advisor Magazine and won the Influencer Award in practice management from Financial Planning Magazine. She works in the US, Canada, UK and Europe and holds an MBA from the University of Toronto.
Chief Executive Officer, The Ensemble Practice LLC
Philip Palaveev is an industry expert and highly sought-after consultant focused on creating team-based financial advisory businesses aimed for sustained growth, profitability and value.
Philip is the owner and CEO of The Ensemble Practice LLC, a business management consulting firm that defines the evolution of growing a multi-professional advisory practice. He specializes in helping independent financial advisors grow their business from a solo practice into a thriving and profitable ensemble firm. Palaveev also works with broker-dealers and custodians on creating impactful practice management services for their advisors.
Prior to launching The Ensemble Practice, Philip served as president of Fusion Advisor Network, a network of independent advisors that changed the way broker-dealers deliver business management and camaraderie to their clients. As president, Palaveev was responsible for the strategy of the firm and led its growth from a fast-growing start-up to one of the industry’s most innovative and successful firms. He helped increase the firm’s revenue by 50% in three years. From 2003 to 2008, Philip was a principal at Moss Adams LLP, an accounting and consulting firm with industry-leading expertise in practice management. Philip led the market research for Moss Adams and consulted with hundreds of advisors and several top broker-dealers.
Philip recently authored The Ensemble Practice, a book dedicated to the process of building a multi-professional enterprise. He is also known for his industry research papers and articles, is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and contributes regularly to industry blogs.
Senior Research Analyst, InvestmentNews
Matt oversees InvestmentNews Research's flagship practice management benchmarking studies, conducting primary research on financial performance, compensation & staffing and technology, as well as working on custom research projects and online tools such as the Advisers on the Move, RIA Data Center and National Adviser Compensation databases. Matt also maintains Numbers Game, a blog highlighting research & data trends in the financial advice industry.
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