For nearly a quarter of a century, Research magazine has annually recognized advisors in the financial services industry who have proven to hold themselves to a benchmark of excellence worthy of remark across the industry.
Those honored have served a minimum of 20 years in the industry, have acquired substantial assets under management, have demonstrated superior client service and have earned recognition from their peers and the broader community for the honor they reflect on their profession.
Today we want to take a moment to thank and congratulate this year’s winners for their achievements:
- Lewis Altfest, CEO and Principal Advisor, Atlfest Personal Wealth Management
- Sally Law, Chairman and CEO, Law & Associates, Raymond James Financial Services
- Eugene Lerner, Managing Director/Partner/Founder, The Lerner Group, HighTower
- Robert Reich, Senior Vice President, Wealth Brokerage Services, Wells Fargo Advisors
- Greg Sarian, Managing Director/Partner/Founder, The Sarian Group, HighTower
Learn more about the winners below and in the full article on ThinkAdvisor.
Thanks to the video from this week showing an 8th grader teaching President Barack Obama how to write his first line of code, you might have heard of the Hour of Code. This is just the latest in a long line of initiatives spearheaded by Code.org, a non-profit dedicated to expanding participation in computer science by making it available in more schools, and increasing participation by women and underrepresented students of color.
As part of this week’s “Hour of Code” event, I’m honored to say that Hearsay Social CEO Clara Shih will be joining tech titans Sheryl Sandberg, Bill Gates, and others in 15-minute video Q&As with 100 classrooms across the United States, including Pawcatuck Middle School in Stonington, CT, Birchwood Intermediate School in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island, St Francis High School in Traverse City, MI, Cooper High School in Union, KY, Concord High School in Staten Island, NY, Perry-Lecompton Middle School in Perry, KS, and Houck Middle School in Salem, OR.
Watch Clara and her fellow thought leaders in the webchat at the bottom of the post. And here are some thoughts Clara will be sharing:
If an 8th grade girl thinks she might be interested in computer science, where would you tell her to start?
It’d be the same for girl or boy:
- Make sure you have a strong math, science, and general academic foundation.
- Start coding. It’s easy to start with Web programming and HTML.
- Attend summer camp, which is valuable even if you don’t end up doing computer science, which is becoming as foundational in life as reading or writing.
I am a girl and a nerd who is interested in computer programming. Who inspired you and were any of these mentors female?
- Ada Lovelace (one of the world’s first computer programmers)
- Grace Hopper (invented the first compiler for a computer programming language)
- Anita Borg (computer scientist who developed the Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology)
- Marissa Mayer (CEO of Yahoo! and Google’s first female engineer)
- Bill Gates (co-founder and former CEO and chairman of Microsoft).
What would you consider “key” decisions you made or crossroads you encountered to get to where you are today?
Think entrepreneurially. The best jobs of 10 years ago aren’t the best jobs of today or certainly 10 years from now. The most important thing you can do is build a solid foundation, learn how to think for yourself, and then be opportunistic.
In your opinion, what is the most influential social media platform out there today and why?
Social media has become so widespread that it’s basically impossible to answer that question, like answering what’s the most influential Web app. There are too many. Social has come to occupy different parts of our lives, from professional to family and friends to romantic to quick messaging utility. Aside from the obvious big three, Pinterest, Instagram, and WhatsApp are also very interesting to me.
As new social media platforms pop up everyday, how does Hearsay Social stay on top of trends and change accordingly?
We download and try everything. It helps to be based in Silicon Valley, because we live and breathe technology here.
I attended Web 2.0 Expo this afternoon in NYC and was thrilled to see such a strong showing!
Not only was it great to see many familiar faces, but I was also able to catch the impressive keynote, Road Map for the Digital City: How @nycgov is Realizing its Digital Potential, presented by Rachel Sterne, Chief Digital Officer for the City of New York.
Having met Rachel and done work on the official New York City website in my previous life at Google, it was exciting to hear that the city is continuing to make investments in technology, especially in regard to social media. As Rachel noted in her presentation, 300,000 people work for the city of New York and a staggering four million engage with the city each day through the Web and social media.
“Social media is incredibly interesting,” said Rachel. “It has allowed us to reimagine the way we engage with the public.”
Some of the most successful examples:
- the Department of Transportation launching the Daily Pothole on Tumblr
- the public using Twitter during Hurricane #Irene
- @311NYC, the Twitter source for New York City government information and services
- and (the one that made me chuckle) NYC Condom on Facebook, an official government resource for promoting safe sex.
All of this is terrific for Hearsay Social, since it provides just more and more proof of social media’s growing influence, from the individual user to nationwide corporations to city politics and planning.
As the leader and founder of the Hearsay Social NYC office, it’s great to be in the company of other local startups like Foursquare and Tumblr. In the not so distant future, I imagine New York and other cities could leverage a solution like the one provided by Hearsay Social to manage posts across all of the city’s agency Facebook pages and Tweets across its growing list of Twitter handles, with strong metrics and compliance across all fronts.
This is exciting stuff, and I congratulate Rachel on her achievements so far. We look forward to talking to you more about how we can help the city realize its full digital potential!
By the way, if you’re a brilliant salesperson in New York City curious about working at a fast-growing social media startup, be sure to check out our jobs page. We’re currently looking to hire a Sales Engineer and Senior Account Executive.
As the manager of customer success at Hearsay Corporation, I love to see how our customers use Hearsay Social and witness the amazing results of their efforts. We recently got an excited phone call from Farmers Insurance agent James Peregrino, who wanted to share some good news with us. Located just across the bay in Pleasanton, James recently visited our San Francisco office to tell us about his success and enjoy some burritos at a team lunch.
James left a 29-year career in the recession-ravaged jewelry business to pursue a career in insurance—a recession-proof industry, he reasoned. Now, just two years later, James has been honored with the Farmers Insurance Agent of the Year award as well as Life Agent of the Year in his district.
James uses Hearsay Social extensively to manage his Facebook business page, and credits Hearsay Social with much of his success: “I estimate 80% of my life insurance leads and 60% of my overall leads come from Facebook.”
Early on, he understood the importance of social networking and began using Facebook to keep family and friends informed of his licensing progress. Through Facebook, they kept up with his schooling and ultimately his success in earning his license.
But the social networking didn’t stop there. Fully licensed and ready to go, his forward thinking created a network of people he could approach for leads. “In fact,” James says, “my first Facebook friend was also my first client. He opened nine policies with me.”
Through Hearsay Social, James was able to provide relevant, meaningful content on his Facebook business page in a matter of clicks, rather than cutting and pasting content and figuring out how to create links. Without Hearsay Social, he wouldn’t have been able to craft the professional image he wanted to project:
“With Hearsay Social I can post compelling, professional content, and join in on global corporate campaigns, which adds validity and credence to my Facebook page. I can also pass along important information in a much more efficient way. I am incredibly grateful that Farmers integrated Hearsay Social.”
The powerful combination of Hearsay Social and Facebook has given him a more personal connection with his customers, and most importantly, its built-in community:
“The ability to use Facebook with Hearsay Social has dramatically improved my business. I am much more accessible to customers, and they are much more open to me. I have gained a new appreciation and understanding of their needs. Hearsay just makes it easy to do what I enjoy. Thank you Hearsay Social!”
We’re glad we could help, James. And from all of us at Hearsay Social: Congratulations!
Chris Andrew, Customer Success Manager