ABOUT US |  Our Team
Shannon “Shãn” Sutherland, AIF®, AAMS®, ADPASM , Wealth Advisor
CEO/ Founder

    “My credentials and designations are the result of a vigilant passion to meet the needs and requirements of my clientele.   The annual investment in education to maintain these credentials is part of my ongoing commitment and focus.


Many of the families I serve prefer actively monitored investments requiring few interruptions to their daily lives.   To address this, I am an IAR, Investment Advisor Representative.  An IAR’s main responsibility is to provide investment related advice and be registered with the proper state authorities.  Core knowledge about retirement planning, portfolio management strategies, fiduciary obligations and principles, are earned through various licenses.  Licenses, such as the Series 63* Securities Exam covering State Securities Acts and related rules and regulations, and the Series 65* Exam, which qualifies investment professionals as an IAR.    Our Discretionary Portfolio Management Agreement, makes it possible to work client investment accounts to a pre-determined portfolio with one simple OK from our clients or their business managers.  This represents a responsibility requiring a deeper level of understanding of the needs for whom money is being invested for.   In the year 2000, I passed the Series 7*. This basic/core exam qualifies me to make different types of trades of general securities.  A fun fact- my first trade ever was for $1,000,000.00  A few months later, I earned a California Life & Health Insurance license #0D28620.     This is another foundation requirement to sell life insurance, health insurance, and annuities.   My Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS®) designation course of study emphasized Asset Allocation and identifying appropriate investments for individual clients.  These three competencies represent a well rounded knowledge base, and should be considered the minimum requirement for an investor choosing their financial advisor.I attended night classes for 2 years at  UCLA to earn a Personal Financial Planning Certificate.  The curriculum encompasses the major disciplines of financial planning with an emphasis on practical applications, which includes analysis, investments, taxation, insurance, pension, estate planning, and ethics.  Metaphorically speaking, I learned to tell time, AND build the clock.  As the sophistication of my client base grew, I passed the Series 31*  Exam which qualifies me to offer and sell Managed Futures funds.  Managed futures have the ability to reduce volatility and improve performance when added to a well-diversified portfolio**.I support LGBT families and advocate for my clients. Whilst in the Beverly Hills and West Hollywood communities, I embarked on learning to help navigate my clients around regulatory inconsistencies. Currently, I am assisting on obtaining an IRS private letter ruling to establish IRA spousal benefits from a deceased partner.  The ADPASM designation   (Accredited Domestic Partnership Advisor)   trained me to recognize advantages and disadvantages of LGBT and heterosexual couples that are not legally married, but live and navigate finances as if they were. During the financial crisis of 2009, I became a California Notary commission #2001518.   This means I can verify the identity of the individual signing legal documents, and simplify complex transactions for my clients.   Many of my clients own businesses.  I have set up 401(k) retirement trusts for companies with 100 employees, and more frequently individual 401(k)’s for S-Corps.  Being responsible for the money of others, I obtained the AIF® designation:  (Accredited Investment Fiduciary) which increased my knowledge of Fiduciary considerations when reviewing retirement plans.  The AIF® process is best applied to overseeing and recommending choices for large scale 401(k) retirement plan asset and charitable trusts.  I also advise other Fiduciaries (such as board members) on investment policies, asset allocation, and regulatory updates. In 2013 and again in 2016, I was recognized by Los Angeles Magazine as a Five Star Wealth Manager***.Currently, I am active in the Santa Monica community and help executives transition through a career change.  When a family needs stability, I bring focus to shorten a path to the next opportunity.My husband Todd and I have been together for over 24 years.  We enjoy an active outdoor lifestyle, and recently began dancing lessons."

*Licenses are held through Commonwealth Financial Network®
**Diversification does not assure a profit or protect against loss in declining markets, and diversification cannot guarantee that any objective or goal will be achieved.
*** FIVE Star Wealth Manager Award is based on 10 objective eligibility and evaluation criteria including: minimum of 5 years as an active credentialed financial professional, favorable regulatory and complaint history, fulfillment of firm’s internal review, accepts new clients, client retention rates, client assets administered, number of client households, education and professional designations. The award is not indicative of the wealth managers’ future performance.  For more information please visit www.fivestarprofessional.com
This communication strictly intended for individuals residing in the states of CA,DC,NJ,NY,OR,PA,TX,VA. No offers may be made or accepted from any resident outside these states due to various state regulations and registration requirements regarding investment products and services.
Investments are not FDIC- or NCUA-insured, are not guaranteed by a bank/financial institution, and are subject to risks, including possible loss of the principal invested.
Securities offered through Commonwealth Financial Network®.
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