Just like last year, 2021 has continued to show us how important it is to appreciate what we already have. At Morton Capital, our appreciation for our clients is at the heart of everything we do and drives our mission of empowering better investors. As you’ll see from the highlights below, we continue to focus on building a resilient organization that will serve our clients and community for generations to come. We are proud of our team and the work that we do, so we are excited to share with you what we’ve been working on over the past year.
When it comes to our team, we have three goals: celebrate, develop, and grow. We may be biased, but we believe we have the best team in the industry. And that kind of team doesn’t happen by accident. Taking the time to celebrate our team’s hard work, to support team members in developing personally and professionally, and to thoughtfully grow our team and our firm is of the utmost importance to us. Here’s a look at what we’ve done this past year:
• We launched our new website experience, which has been over a year in the making. We feel this new website truly represents us and celebrates who we are as a firm. Some of our favorite features:
• The Hear Our Story page, which shares our firm’s defining moments but also our vision for the future. Watch it here.
• A video tour of our office, where you can meet our wonderful team members in our bright and open office space.
• Check out our all-new Careers page, where you can see open positions, explore our career path flowchart, and learn about our Employee Value Proposition.
• For the third year in a row, MC was named one of the Best Places to Work for Financial Advisors by Investment News, ranking #2 among firms our size.
• We held our second annual Core Values Awards, highlighting team members who exemplify each of our five core values. And for the first time, we crowned an all-around core values champion!
• Two of our team members became new partners in the firm: Wealth Advisor Celia Meagher and HR and Finance Manager Adam Bartkoski.
• Congratulations to our team members who advanced along their career paths this year!
ADVISORY: Sarah Ellis (Wealth Advisor), Bryce Snell (Wealth Advisor), and Austin Overholt (Associate Wealth Advisor and Advisor Operations Specialist)
FINANCIAL PLANNING: Brittany Yudkowsky (Financial Planning Manager), Edward Garcia (Financial Planning Education Specialist), and Amber McBride (Financial Planning Associate)
CLIENT & INVESTMENT OPERATIONS: Lauren Salas (Client Coordinator), Judy Lee (Client Reporting Specialist), and Ben Markman (Investment Operations Associate)
BUSINESS STRATEGY & MARKETING: Clarisse Sullivan (Marketing Manager), Sherry Uchuion (Compliance Associate), and Kierstan Lewis (Administrative Assistant)
• Across the firm, leaders met with team members biannually to discuss individual, personalized career path timelines, resulting in over 100 meetings.
• We launched peer accountability groups so that our team members could empower each other to reach their personal and professional goals.
• To cultivate our current and future leadership at the firm, we continued to pursue leadership development initiatives and certifications. Our leaders also put on over 50 team retreats to enhance communication and growth on individual teams.
• We created five guiding principles to support each of our core values and breathe life into how those core values guide us each and every day.
• We adopted the OKR (Objectives and Key Results) framework and the technology to support it, which will allow us to collaborate on setting challenging, ambitious goals across all teams that align with MC’s vision.
• Each of our 57 team members created their personal why statement, which expresses each person’s purpose and impact on the world. We shared these statements with each other at our December team celebration and were inspired by how incredibly thoughtful and insightful our team is.
• Multiple team members obtained additional certifications in their specializations of choice:
Series 65 (wealth management): Austin Overholt and Lauren Salas
CFP® (financial planning): Mike Rudow
CFA® (investment management): Ben Markman (Level I) and Milan Pfeisinger (Level III)
MBA (business): Mike Rudow
MLS (law/compliance): Sherry Uchuion
• Through the hard work and dedication of our team, we were able to add 82 new client households to the MC community (which translates to a whopping 753 new account applications processed by our client operations team!). We now manage over 1,000 client households and $2.4B in assets under management (AUM).
• We welcomed two beautiful baby girls to the MC family: Sloane (Moriah Bowles) and Rena (Menachem Striks).
• We were excited to welcome 14 new team members this year!
ADVISORY: Brandon McKerney (Director of Advisory Services), Mike Privett (Wealth Advisor), and Mike Rudow (Wealth Advisor)
BUSINESS STRATEGY & MARKETING: Laura Henriquez (Project Manager) and Ivy Dyson (Marketing Coordinator)
CLIENT & INVESTMENT OPERATIONS: Briana Verham (Client Operations Manager), Jamie Domke (Client Operations Administrator), Kevin Klein (Investment Operations Administrator), Lauren Lindvall (Client Operations Administrator), Krystal Tavale (Investment Operations Administrator), Michelle Loakes (Client Operations Administrator), Kristin Dillon (Client Coordinator), Ian Rennick (Client Operations Administrator), and Kaizer Gillispie (Investment Operations Administrator)
Our investment research team is the backbone of our investment program at MC and is what holds us steady through varying market cycles. Those team members are constantly monitoring our existing investments and exploring new investment opportunities to help our clients get the most life out of their wealth.
• Our investments team screened over 200 new investment opportunities.
• Out of those opportunities, we introduced 5 new strategies.
• Our investment operations team processed over 1,000 subscription documents to get our clients invested in all of our strategies.
Financial planning and wealth and legacy planning are also key ingredients to helping our clients get the most life out of their wealth, and we continually work, year after year, to refine and expand our planning offerings. This year, we:
• Reviewed and completed over 175 financial plans and estate deliverables.
• Completed over 200 wealth and legacy planning meetings with Wealth Planner Brian Standing for 100 client households.
• Held 47 education sessions for our team members around estate planning, tax strategies, retirement planning, and investment strategies (provided/arranged by our investment research team).
At Morton, we continue to believe that giving back to our community is a vital component of what we do. Nothing fulfills our core values more than to support those in need and provide tools to empower the next generation. Here are some of the initiatives on which we have spent, without hesitation, our time, energy, and money this year:
• Our Get Moving Fitness Challenge returned twice in 2021, supporting organizations near and dear to the hearts of our team members:
• In February, we raised over $3,500 for the Safe Passage Youth Foundation, which works with at-risk youth in the Thousand Oaks area.
• In September, we again raised over $3,500 for the Family Rescue Center, which provides essential goods and services to low-income families and the homeless in the West San Fernando Valley.
• Through our employee benefit program, which allows each team member to donate up to $250 to a local charity in which they’re actively involved, we donated to 12 charities.
• In December, team members donated boxes full of toys and other gifts to children and teens in need for the 29th annual Spark of Love Toy Drive, put on in partnership with ABC7, the Southern California Firefighters, and Toys for Tots.
We’re not the only ones proud of what our team can do. We are honored to receive recognition from our industry on our thought leadership and influence.
• MC was named one of the top 200 RIAs in Financial Advisor magazine’s 2021 Annual RIA Ranking, which includes a total of 607 firms that are ranked based on their year-end AUM.
• MC appeared twice in Bob Veres’s Insider Information newsletter, once in March as a full profile of our office culture, interviewing CEO Jeff Sarti and COO Stacey McKinnon, and again in November, covering Jeff and Stacey’s presentation at the Insider’s Forum conference.
• COO Stacey McKinnon was recognized with the ThinkAdvisor Luminaries award for her achievement in thought leadership and education.
• Senior Vice President and partner Joe Seetoo was named to San Fernando Valley Business Journal’s “Valley 200” list of most influential business and community leaders.
• At Bob Veres’s Insider’s Forum, CEO Jeff Sarti and COO Stacey McKinnon presented on “The Employee-Focused Business.”
• Senior VP and partner Joe Seetoo launched the first season of his passion project, The Ripcord Moment, a podcast dedicated to empowering business owners through the exit planning process.
• White papers by COO Stacey McKinnon:
• Virtual conferences, webinars, and podcasts featuring Stacey:
NextGen Planners, “Workplaces Are the New Classrooms”
Managing Your Practice: A Dimensional Podcast Series, “Creating Long-Term Value in Your Business Through Human Capital”
TEDx Santa Barbara Making Waves Conversations, “The Societal Duty of Businesses: Happiness, Meaning, and Fulfillment for Your People”
Connect 3x, Well-Being in Wealth Management, “Purpose”
The American College of Financial Services, “Taking Your Financial Services Firm to the Next Level”
#NextGen21 Global Financial Planning Conference, “Developing Talent: How to Inspire Your People and Grow Your Practice”
We continue to expand the content we provide on our own website and social media channels, sharing over 100 posts over the course of the year.
• Our CEO, Jeff Sarti, and CIO, Meghan Pinchuk, presented their popular quarterly market review webinars.
• Our Origin Story series highlighted 11 advisory team members and the diverse pathways they took to Morton Capital.
• We wrapped up our This Is Wealth series, which showcased what wealth means to our team members, and our Book Stacks, where we featured stacks of team members’ favorite books (one of our favorite ways to learn at MC).
• We added an additional 564 followers to our LinkedIn profile.
As we move through the uncertain present towards a more hopeful future, we at Morton Capital would like to say how very much we appreciate your continued confidence and trust in us. We happily take on the responsibility of that trust and are committed to continuing our mission of empowering our team, clients, and community to be better investors.
Have a happy and healthy new year.
Your Morton Team
Disclosures: Awards, rankings, and other forms of recognition are generally based exclusively on information submitted by Morton Capital (“Morton”) or its advisors and does not ensure that a client or prospective client will experience a certain level of results or satisfaction if Morton is engaged. Past performance may not be indicative of future results. AUM and client data as of 12.31.2021. A copy of Morton’s current written disclosure brochure which discusses, among other things, the firm’s business practices, services and fees, is available through the SEC’s website at: www.adviserinfo.sec.gov.