Couples in Business

Newton, Catherine
November 2002
Journal of Financial Planning;Nov2002, Vol. 15 Issue 11, p68
Academic Journal
This article presents the experiences of several certified financial planners (CFP) in the U.S. on venturing into financial planning together with their spouses. Kathie B. Barnes of Barnes Investment Advisory Inc. said that she and her husband were in financial planning when they met. They worked side by side for a couple of companies, and then decided to go out on their own because they wanted to be fee only. That was in 1989. Eleanor B. Bernacchi of Bernacchi Financial Services said that she and her husband are both chemical engineers by background. She was the stay-at-home mom and her husband was an executive with U.S. Steel. She has always kept up with whatever her husband was doing, which included taking the CFP courses together to educate themselves. When her husband retired from U.S. Steel, they decided to make good use of their CFP education and go into business. Michael J. Smith of Financial Vision Advisors Inc. said that he and his wife were both in the business when they met. They kept running into each other at various meetings around Atlanta, Georgia, started talking and realized that they had similar philosophies. They ended up creating a firm in 1995 and got married in 1999. Finally, Richard W. Schaeffer of Schaeffer Financial stated that in 1978, he was working at a financial planning firm in metropolitan Washington, D.C. and his wife was at a law firm and trying to decide whether she wanted to go to law school. A woman in his company was giving seminars and it occurred to him that his wife would be perfect in that role because of her public speaking ability and quickness on her feet. His wife was hired by the firm and it has gone from there. After four or five years, they started their own practice and now there are eight people in the firm.


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