Looking Back at 20 Years with Canby Financial Advisors

Working for Canby Financial Advisors and our remarkable clients over the past 20 years has been a gratifying experience for me.  As an organization, Canby Financial has adapted and grown to become a trusted resource for hundreds of families and small businesses.  In the early days, it was Susan Welton, a part-time Darrell Canby, who maintained his CPA duties, and me.  We were supported by Canby, Maloney & Co. and many of their tax clients became Canby Financial investment clients.  Chris Gullotti joined us in 2003, but more about our growth and staff later.

The best part of our job as Financial Advisors is getting to know each of you and helping to provide peace of mind for your financial future.  Each client we work with has a unique set of life experiences and expectations for the future.  Money is a personal subject and sharing your situation and defining realistic long-term goals can be an emotional process.  A financial plan can help reduce uncertainty as we pass through the stages of life from college through retirement.  Your plan should give you the conviction to face life challenges with confidence.

Putting together your financial plan should be a learning process.  Our role is to gain a thorough understanding of your current financial position and help you understand your choices to improve your opportunities for success.  We want you to understand how your financial assets can and should be working to help you reach your personal goals.

To fulfill the promises of a financial plan, we need to manage our investment assets prudently.  And a prudent investment strategy includes a meaningful allocation to Stocks.  Investing in the Stock Market can sometimes feel like riding a roller coaster.  Over the past 20 years, we experienced three significant Bear Markets that made many investors queasy.  Economic bubbles caused the first two Bear Markets of this century, while a global pandemic triggered the 2020 Bear Market.  Long-term investors who persevere through the ups and downs are rewarded as stock prices recover - a new Bull Market has always followed past Bear Markets.

It is human nature to want to avoid financial losses and it can be tempting to try to predict the next Bear Market.  Our brains tend to dwell on bad things more than good things.  Of course, investment performance is critical to successfully reaching our financial objectives, but trying to “time the market” usually turns out to be wasted energy.  We have no control over the direction of investment markets, so we should focus our efforts on the parts of our financial plans where we have some control – income, spending and how much we save.

In today’s fast-paced world, it can be a challenge for a small firm to keep up with all of  technology’s bells and whistles.  We have been fortunate to work with Commonwealth Financial Network as our partner since December 2000.  Commonwealth has consistently supported our efforts to deliver independent financial planning and investment advice by providing exceptional service and technology, and keeping up with the ever-changing regulatory requirements.  As our back office for Operations, Compliance, Investment Research and more, Commonwealth allows Canby Financial’s team to focus on our clients and their long-term well-being.  As an independent firm, we are not influenced by short-term corporate objectives. 

Canby Financial’s service model has always included a Client Service Manager (CSM) for each relationship.  Your Financial Advisor and CSM work together to maintain your financial plan and review your investment accounts.  Two sets of eyes make sure we present accurate reports and two sets of ears help us listen to your comments and follow up on open items. 

Demonstrating our commitment to client service, we hired Mike Flaherty and Gosia Bushko in the fall of 2008 in the midst of the Great Recession.  While many financial services companies were letting go of good people, Canby Financial added to our team to meet the increased demand for service from our clients during this challenging period.

As our client base grew and the investment markets recovered in the 2010’s, we continued to build our team.  In preparation for Darrell Canby’s retirement at the end of 2015, we hired Joelle Spear as a Financial Advisor and David Jaeger as a CSM in 2014.  Both of them worked previously for Fidelity Investments.  In 2015, Dan Flanagan and his clients joined us from a local Registered Investment Adviser.  Both Dan and Joelle are now Partners of Canby Financial.

While our focus on client service helped us develop a broad client base, we determined we needed dedicated management to make sure we were delivering consistent high quality financial planning and investment management services to all our clients.  In 2018, Gretchen Eames joined us as our first non-client-facing employee.  As Director of Operations, she has helped us better utilize a broad set of tools and technology and developed new procedures for us to more effectively support our clients. 

In order to improve our client communications and provide relevant articles on current topics, we added Jeff Briskin to the team in 2018 as Director of Marketing.  In 2021, we are planning to update our website to be more client friendly and start a podcast series to make more educational content available to help our clients. 

Also in 2018, Eileen Carlson, an industry veteran, joined Canby Financial as a CSM to round out our client service team.  Together with Gosia and David, our experienced team of CSMs is an essential part of your Canby Financial team and is your primary contact for many account transaction and maintenance requests.

After 18 years with Canby Financial Advisors, Susan Welton retired at the end of 2018.  Lauren Leverone has stepped into Susan’s big shoes as Office Manager.  To support the continued growth of our client base, we added Eric Kristenson as a Financial Advisor in 2019.  Eric’s experience with Retirement Plans for small businesses and other organizations adds to the expertise Canby Financial brings to all our client relationships.

Your Canby Financial team is vibrant and engaged in our work.  We come to the office each day motivated to help you with financial decisions big and small.  We enjoy seeing our clients reach their goals and hope we can assist in educating the next generation to maintain the personal values and legacies each of our clients wants to instill in their heirs.

Throughout our lifetimes, all of us are faced with financial decisions that have long-lasting implications for our financial well-being.  The confidence and trust our clients place in Canby Financial’s guidance is not taken lightly.  We strive to provide the support you need to reach your financial goals and help you attain the peace of mind you deserve.

In closing, 2020 has changed our lives in so many ways.  And the persistent global pandemic continues to be a source of uncertainty.  Despite the many challenges, Canby Financial has adapted to work from home, hybrid learning for our children and Zoom video meetings with our clients.  While we all have had to endure many disruptions to our daily lives, our team remains committed to maintaining the client-focused culture that Mr. Canby believed in. 

Let’s hope 2021 brings back a sense of normalcy.  All of us at Canby Financial look forward to helping you meet the challenges of a new year and the decades to come.

 

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This article was authored by Christopher Borden, a Financial Advisor and Managing Partner located at Canby Financial Advisors, 161 Worcester Road, Framingham, MA 01701. He offers securities and advisory services as an Investment Adviser Representative of Commonwealth Financial Network®, Member FINRA/SIPC, a Registered Investment Adviser. He can be reached at 508.598.1082 or [email protected]

 

Disclosure: Certain sections of this article contain forward-looking statements based on our reasonable expectations, estimates, projections, and assumptions. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and involve certain risks and uncertainties, which are difficult to predict. Past performance is not indicative of future results. Diversification does not assure a profit or protect against loss in declining markets. Investments are subject to risk, including the loss of principal. Because investment return and principal value fluctuate, shares may be worth more or less than their original value. Some investments are not suitable for all investors, and there is no guarantee that any investing goal will be met. Talk to your financial advisor before making any investing decisions.