All sessions listed below are in Pacific Standard Time Zone (PST). The West Region Symposium offers 4.0 NAPFA CEs and 3.0 CFP® CEs.

Friday, March 22, 2024

9:00 - 9:30 AM

Registration and Check-In

9:30 - 9:45 AM

Welcome and Opening Remarks

9:45 - 10:45 AM

Creating Culture that Attracts Talent

Caleb Brown, MBA, CFP®

Recruiting and hiring for your firm can be a challenging and time-consuming process, but it does not have to be! Caleb Brown, nationally known expert and Co-Founder & CEO of New Planner Recruiting, shares what he has learned over 15 years of recruiting financial planning talent for firms across the country and how the recent pandemic will impact hiring for years to come. Attendees will gain his insights into understanding the next generation of financial services professionals, crafting a unique position description so you will stand out, where to source candidates from in this period of the Great Realignment to build a pipeline, how to effectively screen candidates to ensure they are a good cultural fit for your firm, compensation data and best practices, successfully integrating a new hire into your firm, and strategies for retaining them.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn the differences between the generations in today’s workforce and the impacts on the talent pipeline
  • Understand the position and career expectations of the new financial planner generation
  • Learn components of successful retention strategies

10:45 - 11:00 AM


11:00 AM - 12:00 PM

Incorporating College Planning into Your Client Services

Ann Garcia, CFP®

This session will go beyond the simple time value of money for college costs and 529 plans. Join Ann Garcia as she explains the nuances of college savings strategies, how to identify and assist clients in obtaining scholarships, and understanding the real costs of college beyond tuition. You will come away from the session with a deeper understanding of how to help your clients do more than simply save for college.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn how to build a savings plan for clients
  • Understand how to identify and assist clients in getting scholarships: FAFSA, financial aid, and merit-based
  • Gain knowledge on estimating college costs and how to plan for them

12:00 - 1:00 PM


1:00 - 1:30 PM

West Region Board Panel

1:30 - 2:30 PM

Actually-Useful AI

Ashley Francis, CPA

Ashley Francis brings real-world experience as a family office and tax firm owner to the practical use of AI in the day to day of a financial firm. Learn how to build compliant tools with AI that can assist in everything from marketing content generation, to client FAQs, to roleplaying tough client conversations to identify blind spots.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand why you’ll want GenAI in your financial planning practice
  • Explore use cases for today and see demonstrations of time-saving tactics
  • Find out the positives and negatives of GenAI and how to keep yourself and your client data safe

2:30 - 2:45 PM


2:45 - 3:45 PM

Navigating the Final Chapter: A Guide for Financial Advisors on Compassionate Client Support during Times of Loss

Kay Dee Cole

Be able to communicate and help clients dealing with the traumatic loss of a spouse or a spouse with diminished capacity. We will share approaches to processes and workflows to keep interactions moving seamlessly. We also will explore the challenges a person faces and what you can do to make it as easy as possible.

Learning Objectives:

  • Learn powerful phrases and approaches to guide advisors in what to say during challenging conversations
  • Gain insights into processes and workflows designed to enhance efficiency and keep client interactions moving seamlessly
  • Understand the distinct challenges faced by widows/widowers and clients with dementia or diminished capacity

3:45 - 4:00 PM

Closing Remarks

4:00 - 5:00 PM

Social Hour and Departures

5:00 PM

Informal Happy Hour