Join your colleagues for this intimate gathering in a peaceful Sonoran Desert setting. You'll be just where you need to be in order to unplug and unwind, while at the same time gathering solutions-oriented intelligence and making plans for the future. Go back to the office with strategies for nurturing your firm and a blueprint for cultivating the next generation of leaders.

Wednesday, February 7

12:00 pm Registration Opens

1:00 pm Ice Breaker Reception

2:00 pm Welcome and Overview

2:15 pm Afternoon Forum

Credible Leadership: Why Should Anyone Follow You?

Suzanne Peterson, Arizona State University

Credible leadership occurs when a person behaves with a level of consistency. It is less about simply being genuine and more about ensuring that people know what to expect from you. You know you are authentic when people can predict how you will behave in various situations.

3:30 pm Afternoon Forum

G2 - Building the Next Generation of Future Leaders

Philip Palaveev, The Ensemble Practice

The single highest priority for the independent financial advisory industry today should be the development of the next generation of professionals (“G2”). G2s are not just succession instruments. Instead they are the key to growth, the portal to replenishing a younger client base, the new experts and very importantly the future leaders of advisory firms. Unfortunately, many firms struggle to develop their own G2 talent. Founders are excellent professionals and entrepreneurs but they are not skilled coaches and trainers. Philip Palaveev’s presentation draws on his new book “G2 – Building the Next Generation” to provide guidance to both founders and G2s on the needs of the next generation and the path to development of skills such as business development, leadership and management. The presentation draws on Philip’s experience as a consultant and as the founder of the G2 Leadership Institute.

4:45 pm Afternoon Mini-forum (select one of two options)

Mini-forum 1:

Leadership Development Undressed: Why Traditional Training Doesn't Work and What to do about it

Suzanne Peterson, Arizona State University

Traditional training remains a solid choice for technical content and creating a basic skill set through simple knowledge transfer. However, for leadership development, traditional training methods simply don't work. Training is too passive and the quality and content is too inconsistent, outdated or generic. The result is employees at all levels have become weary and uninspired by what is being offered to them, and organizations remain unconfident in how to proceed effectively. In this session, we will discuss the critical pillars that should be leveraged to truly develop leaders to succeed at the next level. These pillars are designed to create lasting habits and routines that leaders can immediately apply inside the organizations.

Mini-forum 2:

G2 and Founders Panel

Moderator: Philip Palaveev, The Ensemble Practice


Stephanie James, Wescott Financial Advisory Group

Grant Rawdin, Wescott Financial Advisory Group

“Nothing like hearing it from the horse’s mouth” – as founders and leaders, we often make the mistake of speaking about the next generation of professionals (G2) but not inviting them to the conversation. In many conference, we have had large groups of founders discussing how to create better future leaders but we forget to have to future leaders in attendance. This interactive session invites Stephanie James – a G2 leader from Wescott Financial and Grant Rawdin, founder and CEO of Wescott to share their experience of working together, growing the firm and developing the talent and skills of their younger colleagues.

6:00 pm Networking dinner and table conversations with LFF participants, speakers and sponsors

9:00 pm Optional Fireside Chats – continued networking and discussions

Thursday, February 8

5:30 am Optional Morning Pick-Me-Up

Optional group yoga, running or walking

7:30 am Breakfast Forum Panel Discussion

Moderator: Mark Tibergien, Pershing Advisor Solutions


Joel Isaacson, Joel Isaacson and Co.

John Hochschwender, RTD Financial

Deb Wetherby, Wetherby Asset Management

Panelists from $3-6 billion firms discuss the challenges and opportunities associated with their growth, as well as the challenges they currently face.

8:15 am Morning Forum

Disciplined Growth through Focus

Mohan Sawhney, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University

Financial planners advise clients to take a disciplined approach to growing their portfolios. They need to take the same disciplined approach to growing their own businesses. Prof. Sawhney will present a systematic framework for disciplined and sustainable business growth. He will argue that not all growth is good and discuss how to distinguish between toxic growth and good growth. He will discuss how to discover the best growth opportunities, how to focus on where you can win, how to rally your team around the vision for growth and how to execute flawlessly on your strategy. He will use examples from a wide variety of industries and companies to bring the ideas to life. Participants will leave with an actionable framework they can use to drive mindful growth in their businesses.

9:45 am Break

10:00 am Morning Forum continues

A Deeper Dive on Competitive Advantage

Mohan Sawhney, Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University

11:00 am Break

11:30 am Forum

Compensation Structure – Designing a Sustainable Enterprise-level Framework

Jeff Pierce, Dimensional Fund Advisors

Stacey E. Winning, Dimensional Fund Advisors

12:30 pm Lunch

1:30 pm Afternoon Forum

The Mergers and Acquisitions Landscape

Mark Hurley, Fiduciary Network

Hurley will speak on how the industry has changed over the last five years, the forces that will drive the next stage of its evolution and the scope and types of services that wealth management firms will have to provide to clients in the future. He also will describe why these changes are already causing the industry to concentrate (as opposed to consolidate) through mergers and acquisitions and the types and underlying economics of such transactions.

2:30 pm Afternoon Forum Panel Discussion

Mergers and Acquisitions Panel

Moderator: Scott Slater, Fidelity Institutional Wealth Services


Adam Birenbaum, Buckingham Strategic Wealth and BAM Advisor Services

Mark Hurley, Fiduciary Network

Tom Orecchio, Modera Wealth Management, LLC

Ruediger (Rudy) Adolf, Focus Financial

Firm principals will discuss succession and internal leadership, integration and pitfalls, and roles and responsibilities.

3:30 pm Break

4:00 pm Choice of networking activities including:*

  • Table discussions
  • Cooking class
  • Bicycle riding
  • Meet at the bar

*Details of the optional activities and sign-up to follow

5:00 pm Relax and refresh

6:00 pm Cocktail Hour and Industry Leaders Panel

Moderator: Cheryl Holland, Abacus Planning Group


David Canter, Fidelity Investments

Bernie Clark, Schwab Advisor Services

Tom Nally, TD Ameritrade Institutional

Mark Tibergien, Pershing Advisor Solutions

7:00 pm Dinner and table discussions with speakers, program committee members or sponsors

8:00 pm “Under the Stars”

Join your peers for an opportunity for continued conversations and networking.

Friday, February 9

5:30 am Morning Pick-Me-Up

Optional group yoga, running or walking

7:30 am Breakfast

8:30 am Morning Forum

Relationship Management and Economics

David Nour, The Nour Group

How does the manner in which you identify, nurture, sustain and capitalize on your strategic relationships cascade down to every member of your firm? David Nour will discuss the significance of strategic relationships in stewarding your firm, and ways to communicate the value of those relationships to your team members.

9:30 am Break

9:45 am Morning Forum continues

The Co-Create Effect

David Nour, The Nour Group

David will build on the morning Relationship Economics presentation to discuss the Co-Create Economy, where only strategic and innovative collaboration - often with unlikely alliances - will lead to the evolution of your firm. He will present fundamental research that shows you cannot succeed in the future if you choose to "go it alone".

11:10 am Closing Forum

Charged for your Future – a Call to Action

Mark Tibergien, Pershing Advisor Solutions