Matthew is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner and has worked in the financial-services industry for over 20 years. He enjoys helping his clients pursue their life goals through sound investment, retirement and education planning. Throughout his career, he has helped many families and business owners to plan for and work towards their retirement goals.
A former co-host of “Financial Fitness,” a weekly radio show broadcast in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C., metropolitan area, Matthew worked for Legg Mason Wood Walker in Annapolis. Before founding Private Wealth Partners, LLC, in 2005, he also worked as a Senior Retirement Advisor with Royal Alliance Associates and did tax and audit work with Whelan, Barsky and Graham as a Certified Public Accountant.
In addition to his CFP® certificate and CPA designation (non-practicing), Matthew holds a Chartered Retirement Planning CounselorSM designation and a bachelor’s degree in accounting and finance from the University of Maryland. He and his wife, Denise, live in Severna Park with their four children, Calvin, Amy, Jake, and Leo.
Why did you choose to be an investment professional?
I always had a knack for numbers growing up and was an avid saver. (My parents joked that as a child they used to give me $10 at the start of our annual beach vacation and I would have $15 by the time it ended!) I knew that I wanted to pursue a career in business when I went to college and ended up majoring in Accounting and Finance at the University of Maryland. I started my career as a CPA (not currently practicing) and after several years, I realized that I wanted to do something different that involved more interaction with clients. Becoming a financial advisor was a natural progression for me as I was able to use the skills I learned as a CPA and also create relationships with clients on a more personal level.
What do you look forward to each day?
First and foremost is waking up and seeing my wife and 4 kids. After we get them off to school, I arrive at work ready to see what the day will bring. Every day is a new day in our profession as the stock markets move up and down and each client has different needs. However, all of my clients have a goal to eventually retire and I look forward to helping them formulate a plan to pursue that goal. The past 20 years has been a challenging time for financial advisors and investors alike as we've endured two of the worst bear markets in recent memory. However, history allows us to look back at how we navigated those markets and kept focused on the long term goals and objectives and not the day to day fluctuations.
What are you most proud of?
I have to answer this in two parts- Personal and Business. From a personal standpoint I am most proud of being a Father and having an active part in the lives of my four children. I've received a lot of advice from my clients over the years and one that always resonates with me is to be aware of how quickly time goes by. I've worked with some clients for almost 20 years and have seen their children go from elementary school to college to living on their own and getting married- and it all happens so quickly! I try to appreciate what I have every day as I know my kids will move through these same stages before long. From a business standpoint I am most proud of starting my own business with Doug, Eric, Paul and Mark. In 2005 we left the perceived safety of Legg Mason/Smith Barney to start Private Wealth Partners, LLC. It was the best business decision I've ever made and I couldn't have done it without the counsel and friendship of the other partners and our employees.
How do you spend your free time?
I like being outside as often as possible when I am not working. With four active children our schedule can be very busy, but I truly enjoy spending time with them as they pursue their passions. I've been a coach for all four of my children and enjoy watching them develop. When I do have some free time, I enjoy golfing, skiing, biking and spending time on the water.
What is your favorite book?
Growing up I was obsessed with sports and didn't do much reading other than what I was required to do in school. My definition of reading was “The Washington Post” Sports section and Sports Illustrated. That all changed when I worked in Ocean City, MD the summer after my freshman year of college and got sick of listening to my Sony Walkman every day at the beach. (My kids don't even know what a “Walkman” is) My older brother recommended I read some John Grisham books and ever since then I was hooked on reading. I've come to enjoy reading non-fiction and “Into Thin Air” is one of my favorites. The group of climbers depicted in this book came from different backgrounds, were different ages, but all had the same goal- To reach the Summit of Everest. Some were better prepared than others and some unfortunately didn't make it. There are similarities in our business as we help people pursue their goals but you always have to be aware of the risk you are willing to take to get there. To reach Everest you sometimes have to take undue risk and unfortunately people had to pay the ultimate price to try and reach that goal.