Investment Advisory Services, Financial Planning, Wealth Management and Retirement Plan Services in the Tri-State Area of New York, Connecticut and New Jersey.
Contact

info@beaconpointe.com
(973) 287-5437

New York, Connecticut and New Jersey (Tri-State Area) Team

Beacon Pointe is a Tri-State area (New York, Connecticut and New Jersey) based wealth manager and is one of the largest independent Registered Investment Advisory firms (RIAs) in the nation working with institutions, defined contribution plans, individuals and families. Our team of investment advisors and financial planners in New York, Connecticut and New Jersey focuses on full service financial planning and research driven investments.

Our fiduciary responsibility to clients and our holistic wealth approach covers all aspects of your financial well-being including but not limited to wealth and retirement planning, estate and tax strategy planning, insurance reviews and risk assessments, charitable giving and education planning, life transition support for divorcees and widows, financial planning for business owners and multi-generational family wealth and legacy planning, and socially responsible investing.

We look forward to connecting with you at our Tri-State area office serving New York, Connecticut and New Jersey to see how best we can assist you with your investment portfolio and financial planning needs.

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Aidan King

Associate Wealth Advisor

Aidan is an Associate Wealth Advisor and is responsible for partnering with advisors to provide customized solutions that help clients meet their financial goals and to ensure clients receive a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Aidan worked in a client services role at State Street Corporation in Boston, Massachusetts. Aidan earned a Bachelor of Science from Bentley University, with a major in Finance and a minor in Computer Information Systems. Aidan currently resides in Morristown, New Jersey and enjoys spending time with his friends and family.

Alexa Zavlek

Associate, Client Service

Alexa is a member of the Beacon Pointe Client Service Department and is responsible for partnering with the firm’s investment and wealth management teams to provide an elevated service experience for clients. Her duties include account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork, money transfers, and communicating with clients to provide the highest levels of service. Alexa graduated Summa Cum Laude from Ramapo College with a B.A. in Literature. Prior to Beacon Pointe, she handled client service and operations for a technology company in Northern New Jersey.  Alexa was born and raised in Passaic County, but now resides in Morris Plains, where she enjoys hiking, yoga, creative writing, and spending time with her family and friends.

Anne Moisan

Associate, Office Management

Anne is the office manager for the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office. In addition to managing the office, Anne works closely with the wealth advisors in providing support to our clients, as well marketing support and project management as needed. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, she worked as an office manager and assistant producer at a TV commercial studio creating AS SEEN ON TV ads. She has also worked and volunteered at several non-profits in her community. Anne graduated from Fordham University and currently resides in northern New Jersey with her husband and three daughters.  In her free time, Anne enjoys skiing in the winter, hiking in the summer and is currently trying to learn how to play golf.

Annemarie Jablonski

Relationship Manager

Annemarie is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to provide the firm’s clients with a personalized service experience. Her duties include providing a high level of client service, account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork, money transfers, and acting as the primary liaison with our custodians. Previously, Annemarie worked as a Client Service Representative at an independent wealth management firm. Annemarie earned her B.S. in Business Management from William Paterson University. She currently resides in Morris County and enjoys hiking as well as spending time at the beach.

Callie Renner, CFP®

Wealth Advisor

Callie is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Her primary responsibilities include analyzing client financial pictures and preparing analyses and recommendations. Previously, Callie was an Economic Research Associate at a registered investment advisory firm in northern New Jersey, where she provided macroeconomic research to clients and traded in investment portfolios. Callie is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and earned her B.A. in Economics with a minor in Global Business from Mount Holyoke College, graduating Magna Cum Laude. Callie resides in San Diego, CA and enjoys hiking, snowboarding, and spending time with her family.

Donald J. Hertling, CFP®, MST

Partner, Managing Director

Don has more than two decades of experience in wealth management. In his role as Partner and Managing Director of the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office, Don is a driving force for innovation, process and growth. In his other capacities, Don develops, implements and monitors financial planning strategies for clients and oversees the office’s compliance processes. Don takes great pride in his team’s ability to provide an exceptional experience to each and every client. Previously, Don spent nine years at a regional wealth advisory firm where he led the financial planning department. Don earned his Master’s in Taxation from Fairleigh Dickenson University and his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Rider University. He also holds the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) designation. Don is a past Board Member of the New Jersey Institute of Certified Financial Planners and the New Jersey Financial Planning Association. Don resides in Morganville, NJ with his wife Tara and two children.

Jonathan Savorgiannakis

Associate Wealth Advisor

Jon is an Associate Wealth Advisor and is responsible for partnering with advisors to provide customized solutions to help clients meet their financial goals and to ensure clients receive a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Jon worked as a financial consultant at Equitable Advisors in Morristown, New Jersey. Jon earned a Bachelor of Science with a major in Finance and a minor in Economics from Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business. He currently resides in Westfield, New Jersey and enjoys spending time with friends and family, snowboarding, and watching the New York Mets and Liverpool Football Club.

Jordan Heller, CFA, CFP®, CPA

Partner, Managing Director

Joseph Pecoraro

Wealth Advisor

Joseph Pecoraro serves as a Wealth Advisor with Beacon Pointe. With nearly a decade of experience, Joseph helps clients achieve their personal financial goals by custom tailoring financial solutions.  Joseph specializes in creating a comprehensive financial plan to help clients visualize how their investments, insurance, estate plan, taxes, income and expenses all play a part to financial success. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Joseph worked for a nationally recognized Registered Investment Advisor.  Joseph graduated from Seton Hall University.  When not at work, Joseph and his wife can be found trying new restaurants, traveling, relaxing on the beach or cheering on the Seton Hall basketball team.

Marissa Salese

Senior Associate, Client Service

Marissa is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to provide the firm’s clients with a personalized service experience. Her duties include providing a high level of client service, account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork and money transfers. Previously, Marissa played a lead role at a luxury line car company as their Finance Manager. Marissa earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing at Montclair State University, graduating Cum Laude. Marissa was born and raised in Essex County and enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Melissa Gerckens, CFP®

Wealth Advisor

Mel brings over six years of experience in the financial services industry and is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Her primary responsibilities include analyzing client financial pictures and preparing analyses and recommendations. Previously, Mel worked as a Financial Planning Analyst at an independent wealth management firm. Mel is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and holds her NJ Life and Accident & Health licenses. She earned a B.S. in Business Administration from the Sigmund Weis School of Business at Susquehanna University. Mel currently resides in Cranford, NJ with her wife and son, and their Shiba Inu, Nala. She enjoys hosting events at their home, hiking, cooking, and taking trips to her family’s lake house in the Pocono Mountains.

Michael Whittemore, CFA

Senior Strategic Investment Advisor

Michael brings over 18 years of industry experience and provides customized investment solutions that help clients meet their financial goals.  Previously, Michael spent two years with U.S. Trust serving as Portfolio Oversight Director where he led a team of portfolio managers responsible for the oversight and enforcement of fiduciary policy. Prior to U.S. Trust, Michael spent 11 years working with two independent Registered Investment Advisors. Michael earned his B.A. in Economics from Rutgers University and holds the CFA Charterholder designation. Michael resides in Monmouth County, NJ with his wife and two kids and enjoys travelling, golf and football, including passionately following his beloved New England Patriots.

Paul Valdes

Regional Director

As a Beacon Pointe Regional Director, Paul coordinates and leads business development efforts across Beacon Pointe’s referral networks and is primarily responsible for building and maintaining relationships with financial consultants and regional leaders at Beacon Pointe’s custodial referral partners in the Tri-State and New England areas.  With over twenty-five years of industry experience, Paul has worked in various wealth management and financial advisory roles at firms that include Nuveen Investments, Principal Financial Group, Pacific Life and Evergreen Investments.  Paul earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration at Fordham University.  He currently resides in Westchester County, NY with his wife and three children.

Scott J. Drown, CIMA®, CAIA, AAMS

Director, Operations

Scott brings over two decades of financial services experience and is primarily responsible for overseeing the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office day-to-day operations and client relationship management.  Scott consistently looks to find ways to optimize the client experience through technology, customer service and by overseeing the office’s new client onboarding process. In a prior role with the firm, Scott was a Portfolio Manager overseeing trading and investment operations. Previously, he spent six years at American Economic Planning Group, where he held the position of Assistant Portfolio Manager and headed the company’s equity research effort. Scott received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Rutgers University, his Certified Investment Analyst (CIMA®) designation from the Investment Management Consultants Association, CAIA® designation from the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst Association, and Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS) designation from the College of Financial Planning.  He is also a member of the Investment Management Consultants Association.  Scott currently resides in Long Valley, NJ with his wife and three sons. Scott enjoys volunteering his time coaching youth sports (football, basketball, and baseball) and in his free time enjoys mountain biking and running.

Shannon McKinnon

Associate Wealth Advisor

Shannon is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Shannon completed an internship with Decker Capital, LLC in New York, NY. Shannon earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Political Science from Emory College of Arts and Sciences at Emory University. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, cooking, watching NFL football, and spending time with her family and friends.

New York, Connecticut and New Jersey (Tri-State Area) Team

Filter By

Aidan King

Associate Wealth Advisor

Aidan is an Associate Wealth Advisor and is responsible for partnering with advisors to provide customized solutions that help clients meet their financial goals and to ensure clients receive a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Aidan worked in a client services role at State Street Corporation in Boston, Massachusetts. Aidan earned a Bachelor of Science from Bentley University, with a major in Finance and a minor in Computer Information Systems. Aidan currently resides in Morristown, New Jersey and enjoys spending time with his friends and family.

Alexa Zavlek

Associate, Client Service

Alexa is a member of the Beacon Pointe Client Service Department and is responsible for partnering with the firm’s investment and wealth management teams to provide an elevated service experience for clients. Her duties include account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork, money transfers, and communicating with clients to provide the highest levels of service. Alexa graduated Summa Cum Laude from Ramapo College with a B.A. in Literature. Prior to Beacon Pointe, she handled client service and operations for a technology company in Northern New Jersey.  Alexa was born and raised in Passaic County, but now resides in Morris Plains, where she enjoys hiking, yoga, creative writing, and spending time with her family and friends.

Anne Moisan

Associate, Office Management

Anne is the office manager for the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office. In addition to managing the office, Anne works closely with the wealth advisors in providing support to our clients, as well marketing support and project management as needed. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, she worked as an office manager and assistant producer at a TV commercial studio creating AS SEEN ON TV ads. She has also worked and volunteered at several non-profits in her community. Anne graduated from Fordham University and currently resides in northern New Jersey with her husband and three daughters.  In her free time, Anne enjoys skiing in the winter, hiking in the summer and is currently trying to learn how to play golf.

Annemarie Jablonski

Relationship Manager

Annemarie is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to provide the firm’s clients with a personalized service experience. Her duties include providing a high level of client service, account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork, money transfers, and acting as the primary liaison with our custodians. Previously, Annemarie worked as a Client Service Representative at an independent wealth management firm. Annemarie earned her B.S. in Business Management from William Paterson University. She currently resides in Morris County and enjoys hiking as well as spending time at the beach.

Callie Renner, CFP®

Wealth Advisor

Callie is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Her primary responsibilities include analyzing client financial pictures and preparing analyses and recommendations. Previously, Callie was an Economic Research Associate at a registered investment advisory firm in northern New Jersey, where she provided macroeconomic research to clients and traded in investment portfolios. Callie is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and earned her B.A. in Economics with a minor in Global Business from Mount Holyoke College, graduating Magna Cum Laude. Callie resides in San Diego, CA and enjoys hiking, snowboarding, and spending time with her family.

Donald J. Hertling, CFP®, MST

Partner, Managing Director

Don has more than two decades of experience in wealth management. In his role as Partner and Managing Director of the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office, Don is a driving force for innovation, process and growth. In his other capacities, Don develops, implements and monitors financial planning strategies for clients and oversees the office’s compliance processes. Don takes great pride in his team’s ability to provide an exceptional experience to each and every client. Previously, Don spent nine years at a regional wealth advisory firm where he led the financial planning department. Don earned his Master’s in Taxation from Fairleigh Dickenson University and his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Rider University. He also holds the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) designation. Don is a past Board Member of the New Jersey Institute of Certified Financial Planners and the New Jersey Financial Planning Association. Don resides in Morganville, NJ with his wife Tara and two children.

Jonathan Savorgiannakis

Associate Wealth Advisor

Jon is an Associate Wealth Advisor and is responsible for partnering with advisors to provide customized solutions to help clients meet their financial goals and to ensure clients receive a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Jon worked as a financial consultant at Equitable Advisors in Morristown, New Jersey. Jon earned a Bachelor of Science with a major in Finance and a minor in Economics from Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business. He currently resides in Westfield, New Jersey and enjoys spending time with friends and family, snowboarding, and watching the New York Mets and Liverpool Football Club.

Jordan Heller, CFA, CFP®, CPA

Partner, Managing Director

Joseph Pecoraro

Wealth Advisor

Joseph Pecoraro serves as a Wealth Advisor with Beacon Pointe. With nearly a decade of experience, Joseph helps clients achieve their personal financial goals by custom tailoring financial solutions.  Joseph specializes in creating a comprehensive financial plan to help clients visualize how their investments, insurance, estate plan, taxes, income and expenses all play a part to financial success. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Joseph worked for a nationally recognized Registered Investment Advisor.  Joseph graduated from Seton Hall University.  When not at work, Joseph and his wife can be found trying new restaurants, traveling, relaxing on the beach or cheering on the Seton Hall basketball team.

Marissa Salese

Senior Associate, Client Service

Marissa is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to provide the firm’s clients with a personalized service experience. Her duties include providing a high level of client service, account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork and money transfers. Previously, Marissa played a lead role at a luxury line car company as their Finance Manager. Marissa earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing at Montclair State University, graduating Cum Laude. Marissa was born and raised in Essex County and enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Melissa Gerckens, CFP®

Wealth Advisor

Mel brings over six years of experience in the financial services industry and is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Her primary responsibilities include analyzing client financial pictures and preparing analyses and recommendations. Previously, Mel worked as a Financial Planning Analyst at an independent wealth management firm. Mel is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and holds her NJ Life and Accident & Health licenses. She earned a B.S. in Business Administration from the Sigmund Weis School of Business at Susquehanna University. Mel currently resides in Cranford, NJ with her wife and son, and their Shiba Inu, Nala. She enjoys hosting events at their home, hiking, cooking, and taking trips to her family’s lake house in the Pocono Mountains.

Michael Whittemore, CFA

Senior Strategic Investment Advisor

Michael brings over 18 years of industry experience and provides customized investment solutions that help clients meet their financial goals.  Previously, Michael spent two years with U.S. Trust serving as Portfolio Oversight Director where he led a team of portfolio managers responsible for the oversight and enforcement of fiduciary policy. Prior to U.S. Trust, Michael spent 11 years working with two independent Registered Investment Advisors. Michael earned his B.A. in Economics from Rutgers University and holds the CFA Charterholder designation. Michael resides in Monmouth County, NJ with his wife and two kids and enjoys travelling, golf and football, including passionately following his beloved New England Patriots.

Paul Valdes

Regional Director

As a Beacon Pointe Regional Director, Paul coordinates and leads business development efforts across Beacon Pointe’s referral networks and is primarily responsible for building and maintaining relationships with financial consultants and regional leaders at Beacon Pointe’s custodial referral partners in the Tri-State and New England areas.  With over twenty-five years of industry experience, Paul has worked in various wealth management and financial advisory roles at firms that include Nuveen Investments, Principal Financial Group, Pacific Life and Evergreen Investments.  Paul earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration at Fordham University.  He currently resides in Westchester County, NY with his wife and three children.

Scott J. Drown, CIMA®, CAIA, AAMS

Director, Operations

Scott brings over two decades of financial services experience and is primarily responsible for overseeing the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office day-to-day operations and client relationship management.  Scott consistently looks to find ways to optimize the client experience through technology, customer service and by overseeing the office’s new client onboarding process. In a prior role with the firm, Scott was a Portfolio Manager overseeing trading and investment operations. Previously, he spent six years at American Economic Planning Group, where he held the position of Assistant Portfolio Manager and headed the company’s equity research effort. Scott received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Rutgers University, his Certified Investment Analyst (CIMA®) designation from the Investment Management Consultants Association, CAIA® designation from the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst Association, and Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS) designation from the College of Financial Planning.  He is also a member of the Investment Management Consultants Association.  Scott currently resides in Long Valley, NJ with his wife and three sons. Scott enjoys volunteering his time coaching youth sports (football, basketball, and baseball) and in his free time enjoys mountain biking and running.

Shannon McKinnon

Associate Wealth Advisor

Shannon is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Shannon completed an internship with Decker Capital, LLC in New York, NY. Shannon earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Political Science from Emory College of Arts and Sciences at Emory University. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, cooking, watching NFL football, and spending time with her family and friends.

New York, Connecticut and New Jersey (Tri-State Area) Team

Filter By

Aidan King

Associate Wealth Advisor

Aidan is an Associate Wealth Advisor and is responsible for partnering with advisors to provide customized solutions that help clients meet their financial goals and to ensure clients receive a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Aidan worked in a client services role at State Street Corporation in Boston, Massachusetts. Aidan earned a Bachelor of Science from Bentley University, with a major in Finance and a minor in Computer Information Systems. Aidan currently resides in Morristown, New Jersey and enjoys spending time with his friends and family.

Alexa Zavlek

Associate, Client Service

Alexa is a member of the Beacon Pointe Client Service Department and is responsible for partnering with the firm’s investment and wealth management teams to provide an elevated service experience for clients. Her duties include account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork, money transfers, and communicating with clients to provide the highest levels of service. Alexa graduated Summa Cum Laude from Ramapo College with a B.A. in Literature. Prior to Beacon Pointe, she handled client service and operations for a technology company in Northern New Jersey.  Alexa was born and raised in Passaic County, but now resides in Morris Plains, where she enjoys hiking, yoga, creative writing, and spending time with her family and friends.

Anne Moisan

Associate, Office Management

Anne is the office manager for the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office. In addition to managing the office, Anne works closely with the wealth advisors in providing support to our clients, as well marketing support and project management as needed. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, she worked as an office manager and assistant producer at a TV commercial studio creating AS SEEN ON TV ads. She has also worked and volunteered at several non-profits in her community. Anne graduated from Fordham University and currently resides in northern New Jersey with her husband and three daughters.  In her free time, Anne enjoys skiing in the winter, hiking in the summer and is currently trying to learn how to play golf.

Annemarie Jablonski

Relationship Manager

Annemarie is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to provide the firm’s clients with a personalized service experience. Her duties include providing a high level of client service, account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork, money transfers, and acting as the primary liaison with our custodians. Previously, Annemarie worked as a Client Service Representative at an independent wealth management firm. Annemarie earned her B.S. in Business Management from William Paterson University. She currently resides in Morris County and enjoys hiking as well as spending time at the beach.

Callie Renner, CFP®

Wealth Advisor

Callie is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Her primary responsibilities include analyzing client financial pictures and preparing analyses and recommendations. Previously, Callie was an Economic Research Associate at a registered investment advisory firm in northern New Jersey, where she provided macroeconomic research to clients and traded in investment portfolios. Callie is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and earned her B.A. in Economics with a minor in Global Business from Mount Holyoke College, graduating Magna Cum Laude. Callie resides in San Diego, CA and enjoys hiking, snowboarding, and spending time with her family.

Donald J. Hertling, CFP®, MST

Partner, Managing Director

Don has more than two decades of experience in wealth management. In his role as Partner and Managing Director of the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office, Don is a driving force for innovation, process and growth. In his other capacities, Don develops, implements and monitors financial planning strategies for clients and oversees the office’s compliance processes. Don takes great pride in his team’s ability to provide an exceptional experience to each and every client. Previously, Don spent nine years at a regional wealth advisory firm where he led the financial planning department. Don earned his Master’s in Taxation from Fairleigh Dickenson University and his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Rider University. He also holds the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) designation. Don is a past Board Member of the New Jersey Institute of Certified Financial Planners and the New Jersey Financial Planning Association. Don resides in Morganville, NJ with his wife Tara and two children.

Jonathan Savorgiannakis

Associate Wealth Advisor

Jon is an Associate Wealth Advisor and is responsible for partnering with advisors to provide customized solutions to help clients meet their financial goals and to ensure clients receive a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Jon worked as a financial consultant at Equitable Advisors in Morristown, New Jersey. Jon earned a Bachelor of Science with a major in Finance and a minor in Economics from Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business. He currently resides in Westfield, New Jersey and enjoys spending time with friends and family, snowboarding, and watching the New York Mets and Liverpool Football Club.

Jordan Heller, CFA, CFP®, CPA

Partner, Managing Director

Joseph Pecoraro

Wealth Advisor

Joseph Pecoraro serves as a Wealth Advisor with Beacon Pointe. With nearly a decade of experience, Joseph helps clients achieve their personal financial goals by custom tailoring financial solutions.  Joseph specializes in creating a comprehensive financial plan to help clients visualize how their investments, insurance, estate plan, taxes, income and expenses all play a part to financial success. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Joseph worked for a nationally recognized Registered Investment Advisor.  Joseph graduated from Seton Hall University.  When not at work, Joseph and his wife can be found trying new restaurants, traveling, relaxing on the beach or cheering on the Seton Hall basketball team.

Marissa Salese

Senior Associate, Client Service

Marissa is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to provide the firm’s clients with a personalized service experience. Her duties include providing a high level of client service, account administration, processing new and existing account paperwork and money transfers. Previously, Marissa played a lead role at a luxury line car company as their Finance Manager. Marissa earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing at Montclair State University, graduating Cum Laude. Marissa was born and raised in Essex County and enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Melissa Gerckens, CFP®

Wealth Advisor

Mel brings over six years of experience in the financial services industry and is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Her primary responsibilities include analyzing client financial pictures and preparing analyses and recommendations. Previously, Mel worked as a Financial Planning Analyst at an independent wealth management firm. Mel is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and holds her NJ Life and Accident & Health licenses. She earned a B.S. in Business Administration from the Sigmund Weis School of Business at Susquehanna University. Mel currently resides in Cranford, NJ with her wife and son, and their Shiba Inu, Nala. She enjoys hosting events at their home, hiking, cooking, and taking trips to her family’s lake house in the Pocono Mountains.

Michael Whittemore, CFA

Senior Strategic Investment Advisor

Michael brings over 18 years of industry experience and provides customized investment solutions that help clients meet their financial goals.  Previously, Michael spent two years with U.S. Trust serving as Portfolio Oversight Director where he led a team of portfolio managers responsible for the oversight and enforcement of fiduciary policy. Prior to U.S. Trust, Michael spent 11 years working with two independent Registered Investment Advisors. Michael earned his B.A. in Economics from Rutgers University and holds the CFA Charterholder designation. Michael resides in Monmouth County, NJ with his wife and two kids and enjoys travelling, golf and football, including passionately following his beloved New England Patriots.

Paul Valdes

Regional Director

As a Beacon Pointe Regional Director, Paul coordinates and leads business development efforts across Beacon Pointe’s referral networks and is primarily responsible for building and maintaining relationships with financial consultants and regional leaders at Beacon Pointe’s custodial referral partners in the Tri-State and New England areas.  With over twenty-five years of industry experience, Paul has worked in various wealth management and financial advisory roles at firms that include Nuveen Investments, Principal Financial Group, Pacific Life and Evergreen Investments.  Paul earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration at Fordham University.  He currently resides in Westchester County, NY with his wife and three children.

Scott J. Drown, CIMA®, CAIA, AAMS

Director, Operations

Scott brings over two decades of financial services experience and is primarily responsible for overseeing the Beacon Pointe New Jersey office day-to-day operations and client relationship management.  Scott consistently looks to find ways to optimize the client experience through technology, customer service and by overseeing the office’s new client onboarding process. In a prior role with the firm, Scott was a Portfolio Manager overseeing trading and investment operations. Previously, he spent six years at American Economic Planning Group, where he held the position of Assistant Portfolio Manager and headed the company’s equity research effort. Scott received a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Rutgers University, his Certified Investment Analyst (CIMA®) designation from the Investment Management Consultants Association, CAIA® designation from the Chartered Alternative Investment Analyst Association, and Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS) designation from the College of Financial Planning.  He is also a member of the Investment Management Consultants Association.  Scott currently resides in Long Valley, NJ with his wife and three sons. Scott enjoys volunteering his time coaching youth sports (football, basketball, and baseball) and in his free time enjoys mountain biking and running.

Shannon McKinnon

Associate Wealth Advisor

Shannon is responsible for partnering with Beacon Pointe’s investment and financial planning teams to deliver the firm’s clients a personalized wealth management experience. Prior to joining Beacon Pointe, Shannon completed an internship with Decker Capital, LLC in New York, NY. Shannon earned a Bachelor of Arts in Economics and Political Science from Emory College of Arts and Sciences at Emory University. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, cooking, watching NFL football, and spending time with her family and friends.

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