Applause, please: Financial advisers win Community Leadership Awards

Invest in Others and InvestmentNews honor the philanthropic feats of five advisers and two firms at the 10th annual CLAs

Sep 29, 2016 @ 10:00 pm

By Liz Skinner

The charitable contributions of five financial advisers and two firms were honored Thursday night at the 10th annual Community Leadership Awards, presented by the Invest in Others Charitable Foundation and InvestmentNews.

"It's resoundingly clear that the financial advice industry is a force to be reckoned with when it comes to giving back to people in need," said Megan McAuley, executive director of Invest in Others.

About 600 financial professionals and guests attended the awards dinner at Cipriani 42nd Street in New York.

The winning advisers were nominated by their peers and selected based on their leadership, dedication, contribution, inspiration and impact on the communities they help. They were narrowed to three per award category and chosen from hundreds of nominations received by the foundation.

Winners of the adviser awards, which include a charitable contribution of up to $25,000, worked with a range of causes including medical research, suicide prevention and youth development. Charities of the 10 other finalists will each receive $5,000 checks.

(More: Meet all of the 2016 CLA finalists, and prepare to be impressed)

Gerard Klingman, president of Klingman & Associates in New York, won the Lifetime Achievement Award for his work over the past quarter century with Best Buddies International, an organization focused on supporting people with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Mr. Klingman helped Best Buddies grow from a fledgling group with a $250,000 operating budget to a $30 million group that operates in 50 states.

The other finalists for the Lifetime Achievement Award were Frank Lento of Merrill Lynch for the Institute for Educational Achievement and Jeffrey Owens of BPG Wealth Management for Children's Cancer Association.

Mary Lou Arveseth, a designated supervisor at Financial Network in Draper, Utah, won the Volunteer of the Year award for her work with the Utah chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Ms. Arveseth co-founded the local branch of the organization in 2010, the year after her son committed suicide. She's worked since then to educate the community about suicide prevention and to fund programs and back laws that support suicide loss survivors.

The other finalists for the Volunteer of the Year Award were Chad Coe of Coe Financial Group for Special Kids Network and Ryan Harman of Edward Jones for Project Healing Waters Fly Fishing Inc.

Michael J. Nathanson, chief executive of The Colony Group in Boston, won the Catalyst Award for his work as chairman of the National Brain Tumor Society.

He joined the group after being diagnosed with a non-cancerous and inoperable brain tumor himself, and led a strategic planning process that focused the organization's mission on research and advocacy.

The other finalists for the Catalyst Award were Lisette Cooper of Athena Capital Advisors for the Boston Youth Sanctuary and Janel Huston of Raymond James for Children's Oncology Services.

Roy C. Jordan, a wealth management adviser for Northwestern Mutual in Nashville, won the Community Service Award for working on the board of the Green Hills Family YMCA/YMCA of Middle Tennessee over the past dozen years.

Mr. Jordan helped raise more than $4 million for youth programs and recruited more than 40 volunteer leaders who have introduced new and expanded programs for the community.

The other finalists for the Community Service Award were Trent Bryson of Bryson Financial for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Long Beach and Daniel C. Jones of Raymond James for The Buoniconti Fund to Cure Paralysis.

Michael Meltzer, financial adviser of Tocqueville Asset Management in New York, won the Global Community Impact Award for helping to lead Maya's Hope Foundation, which seeks to improve the lives of poor orphans with special needs.

Mr. Meltzer helped his friend Maya Rowencak create a nonprofit organization that to date has helped to improve the lives of hundreds of sick and neglected children in orphanages around the world.

The other finalists for the Global Community Impact Award were Larry Goff of Triloma Securities for Beauty for Ashes Uganda and Steven Tonkinson of Tonkinson Financial for ShelterBox USA.

Ameriprise Financial and advisory firm Budros, Ruhlin & Roe each won Corporate Philanthropy Awards. They will receive a $1,000 donation to a charity of their choice.

The other four financial advice firm finalists were The Kelly Group, Lakeside Wealth Management, North Star Resource Group and Optivest Wealth Management.

The four other financial institution finalists were Advisors Excel, CNL Financial Group, National Life Group and Natixis Global Asset Management.

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