Developing Holistic Advisors 2021

Developing Holistic Advisors

Thursday, May 13, 2021
3:30 p.m.–5:00 p.m. Eastern


The Kehrer Bielan study group on developing holistic advisors meets periodically to continue its dialogue on how to transition advisors from investment sales professionals to providers of holistic advice.  We share the insights and experience of the financial advice community against the backdrop of the latest Kehrer Bielan research on financial planning in financial institutions and how planning impacts consumer financial decisions.

This meeting will review the changes in the breadth and depth of planning activity between 2018 and 2020, showcasing the findings from the 2020-2021 PlanningInsights™ Report.  We’ll also examine how the Pandemic has impacted how clients perceive the value of planning and continue our conversation on measuring the depth of planning.

Due to travel restrictions and the awkwardness of in-person meetings during the pandemic, we have reimagined our study groups as virtual dialogues.

Meet the Core Contributors

Mark Bunyad, Regional Manager, BancWest Investment Services

Mark manages the largest region of BancWest Investment Services, the broker dealer of Bank of the West, the California-based institution with 534 branches and $43 billion in core deposits.  Mark’s team accounts for $1 billion of the $7 billion of the assets administered by BWIS’s 132 advisors.  He has spent the last 10 years of his financial services career with the bank, and is in the second year in the Pacific Coast Banking School.

Edward Cruz, AIF®, CFF®, Vice President, Regional Sales Manager at Frost Brokerage Services, Frost Investment Services

Edward Cruz is a financial services professional with over 25 years of experience in the banking, financial planning, and investments. Over the course of his career, Mr. Cruz has developed a skillset focusing on aspects of business development, revenue growth strategy and process optimization that are needed to increase profitability and sustain a healthy financial advisory practice. He is a results-driven individual who is committed to providing quality service and accountability through proven leadership and communication. Mr. Cruz’s passion lies in facilitating the success of clients through leveraging business building elements as well as giving direction toward implementing objectives and achieving goals.  He earned the AIF® designation in 2018, demonstrating understanding of the Prudent Practices® and methodology. 

Frost Brokerage Services is the broker dealer of Frost Bank, the Texas-based institution with $27 billion in core deposits.  Frost Brokerage Services has 48 financial advisors who administer almost $9 billion in assets.

Kevin Burke, VP Strategy and Transformation, Key Investment Services

Focuses on strategy, technology improvement, client experience, and advisor productivity. A Certified Financial Planner (CFP) who has worked in both domestic and international wealth businesses, spanning Bond Trader/Underwriter, Financial Advisor, Wealth Manager, and Regional Manager. Lives in D.C. with wife Penny, Daughter Taylor and dog Mozzie.

Key Investment Services [KIS} is the broker dealer of Key Bank, with almost $50 billion in core deposits and 1100 branches across the northern tier of the US, from Portland OR to Portland ME.  KIS has 280 advisors who administer $20 billion in AUM.

David Bresler, CFP® CRPC®, Vice President Advisor Business Development Group, Ameriprise Financial

David Bresler has been with Ameriprise for 16 years and currently leads the Advisor Business Development Group of 70 coaches supporting the development of nearly 10,000 advisors.  David started his career with Ameriprise in Boston as a financial advisor and spent time as an advisor coach, district manager, associate branch manager and regional sales leader before moving to Minneapolis 8 years ago to be part of the organization he now leads.  He is both a CFP and CRPC and has Bachelor degrees from Boston University in Political Science and Journalism.  Prior to his time at Ameriprise he worked on a number of state and national political races including as a field organizer during the 2004 presidential primary season. 

Steve Levis, CFP®, SVP Financial Planning, eMoney

Steve leads the Practice Management Team within eMoney’s Financial Planning Group. The team of consultants are focused on helping new and existing firms to succeed with the eMoney platform by leveraging its capabilities to the greatest extent within their practices. This is accomplished by understanding firms’ unique client relationships, planning approaches and goals and recommending optimized processes within eMoney and integrated systems. In his 10+ years at eMoney Advisor, Steve has led the Customer Service, Financial Planning, Tech Support and Training teams at various times, as well as spending countless hours assisting individual advisors and their team members in successfully using eMoney for planning with their clients. Prior to joining eMoney, Steve enjoyed a career in financial services with the Vanguard Group, including advising clients in their Financial Planning area, and managing call center departments. He earned a bachelor’s degree from The Pennsylvania State University and holds the CFP® designation.

Jen Shields, National Training Director, Midwood Financial Services

Jen leads the training division of Midwood Financial Services. Her primary role is to consult with financial institutions to uncover training needs and build customized programs to meet those needs. She graduated from Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Financial Planning and Counseling and has over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry, the majority of which has been in training and managing annuity and brokerage programs. 

Founded in 2000, Midwood Financial Services, Inc. has rapidly grown to become the largest independently owned distributor of investment product solutions and support resources in the United States. Midwood’s success is derived from their ability to continuously match financial institutions with customized solutions and resources. This has led to business partnerships with over 300 banks.


This complimentary study group would not be possible without the support of our sponsors. We acknowledge these organizations for their thought leadership and support.

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