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Independent Financial Partners Reaffirms Its Strength in the Retirement Plan Advisor Market

by Chris Hamm

Tampa, Fla., August 11, 2015 – Independent Financial Partners (IFP), which has quickly grown to become one of the most robust RIAs in the retirement plan sector, has added new leadership to its recently rebranded IFP Plan Advisors group.

Formed only in 2010, 150 of IFP’s more than 500 advisors across the nation are retirement plan specialists. In addition to new leadership, IFP’s retirement plan advisors will also benefit from new resources and support, as well as new tools designed specifically for the work they do.

Kimberly Shaw Elliott has joined IFP as President of IFP Plan Advisors, as well as in-house ERISA counsel. Jay Bloom has been hired as Director of Business Development. Shaw Elliott will provide strategic direction for the division, which oversees more than $35 billion in retirement plan assets under advisement, while Bloom will work directly with plan advisors ensuring that IFP is constantly delivering the ideas, resources and support they need.

“With the addition of Kim and Jay, we will build upon our past success in the retirement plan space by ensuring our advisors have every necessary resource at their fingertips,” said William Hamm, IFP’s chief executive officer. “They have the experience and the leadership skills to solidify IFP Plan Advisors’ place at the forefront of our industry.”

Ignacio Morrell, IFP Senior Compliance Analyst, rounds out the team by lending his expertise in plan agreement design and ERISA and advisory compliance issues.

Under Elliott’s leadership, IFP Plan Advisors will deliver several new services to its retirement plan advisors, including a(n):

  • Suite of retirement plan tool sets including, but not limited to, LPL Retirement Partners’ Tool Set for Hybrid RIAs and Envestnet
  • Dedicated call center for retirement plan participants
  • RFP department
  • Annual conference devoted solely to retirement plan advisors
  • Dedicated marketing materials and co-branding opportunities

Well known throughout the industry as a speaker and subject matter expert, Elliott will help IFP’s retirement plan-focused advisors navigate the complex rules surrounding employee benefits, securities law, broker-dealer regulation and taxes. She will also define IFP’s risk management strategies for retirement programs, provide thought leadership and training to its advisors, and serve as the firm’s ERISA counsel. “The rules surrounding retirement plans are continuously evolving and it’s a challenge for clients and their advisors to keep up on their own,” Elliott said. “IFP’s retirement plan advisors now have a team dedicated to helping them assist their plan sponsor clients.”

A former private practice attorney, Elliott has represented broker-dealers, investment advisors, insurance companies and others across the nation, focusing on distribution and fiduciary responsibility. Previously, she worked for many years as lead counsel and an executive for leading financial services companies. Elliott is a three-time graduate of Washington University in St. Louis, where she earned her JD, LLM-taxation and executive MBA. She earned her bachelor’s degree in mass communication, radio-television, from Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville.

To complement Elliott’s expertise, Bloom brings to IFP a unique perspective built from his years of experience working exclusively with retirement plans. “I was attracted to IFP because of the scope of its business and diversity of its advisors,” he said. “We are an important player in this sector and should be a destination for retirement plan advisors looking to work with a hybrid RIA.”

Bloom joined the executive team at 401(k) Exchange in 2004, where he was instrumental in growing the institutional business channel until 2008, when he helped launch a 401(k) Exchange subsidiary, Jupiter Distribution Partners, a broker-dealer providing hybrid wholesaling services to Cullen Funds and First American Funds. In 2010, Bloom covered Florida as a regional vice president for The Retirement Advantage, a national third-party administrator focused on administering defined benefit and defined contribution plans. He joins IFP from Strategic Growth Advisors, a firm he founded in 2011 that delivered prospects to retirement-focused advisors.

The hiring of Elliott and Bloom only adds to a firm that already has five AIF® designees on staff as well as an RIA level CEFEX certification.

“We’ve been a dominant player in the retirement plan sector for a few years now,” Hamm added. “We have some of the premier retirement plan specialists in the country and they deserve the premier tools and services. The additional resources we’re now bringing to the table will only solidify our position as a leader in the retirement planning market and will help us achieve our goal of becoming the No. 1 retirement plan outfit. We will get there, I’m sure of it.”

About Independent Financial Partners

Independent Financial Partners (IFP) is an SEC Registered Investment Adviser (RIA) and comprehensive wealth management firm located in Tampa, Florida. Operating on the LPL Financial hybrid RIA platform, IFP is a multi-custodial hybrid RIA platform that is focused
on delivering personalized, concierge-level service to a network of more than 500 advisors nationwide. Founded in 2000 by CEO William Hamm Jr., CFA, CFP®, CLU, IFP is a privately held, family-owned firm with the primary goal of improving the lives of its advisors and their clients. The firm provides the tools and support needed for advisors to grow their practices, including some of the industry’s most innovative technology, responsive back office support and access to an unparalleled network of seasoned financial services professionals.

IFP has just under $6 billion in assets under management and, as such, continues to attract entrepreneurial-minded financial advisors and advisory groups seeking a unique, independent advice solution for their families and clientele. For more information, visit

Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment advice offered through Independent Financial Partners, a registered investment adviser and separate entity from LPL Financial.

Posted by: Chris Hamm | August 11th, 2015 at 3:07pm.