Truly Independent Eric
Eric Schwartz is the founder, chairman, and CEO of Cambridge Investment Research, Inc. Over 30 years ago, Schwartz acted with an inspired vision to wholeheartedly embrace the fee approach – long before the term “hybrid advisor” became an industry norm – and in turn led the industry-wide paradigm shift: the development of a hybrid model to support freedom of choice and open architecture fee and commission platforms. Intent on innovation and problem solving, Schwartz is focused on solving one of the greatest challenges facing independent advisors and the industry – business continuity and succession planning. In May 2010, he was honored by Investment Advisor magazine as one of the 30 most influential people in the business over the past 30 years.
Amy Webber is President and Chief Operating Officer at Cambridge Investment Research, Inc. With over 20 years of industry experience, her commitment to independent rep-advisors is demonstrated in her passion for delivering high level, personal service, as well as leading edge management solutions. Amy’s executive accomplishments include significant initiatives – such as the implementation of a complete virtual office technology platform and the formation of the Cambridge New Century Council – a unique initiative intended to draw on the insights of 40-something advisors to define the tools and infrastructure needed to serve clients in need of financial planning guidance in the next 10-20 years. Based on her work with the New Century Council, Amy recently spearheaded the launch of an industry-leading social networking program designed to meet the interests of Cambridge advisors while appropriately observing regulatory guidelines regarding client communications. She is registered with FINRA as an Investment Company and Variable Contract Representative, Corporate Securities Representative, and General Securities Principal. In May 2012, Amy was recognized as a member of the IA 25 by Investment Advisor magazine and in 2011, 2010, and 2009 as one of the Top 50 in wealth by Wealth Manager.
Amy resides in Fairfield, Iowa, with her husband, Matt, and their two children and is actively involved in the community through various board and volunteer associations.
A Guy’s Perspective
Jim’s passion touched us all as he poured his heart and soul into Cambridge and all that we stand for in terms of our culture, values, and independence. Cambridge is very fortunate that Jim’s many years of counsel leave us all with a deep understanding for best serving Cambridge rep-advisors and their clients. His passing is a personal loss of friend and colleague, but his legacy is our ability to continue to achieve the level of success he helped create.
Jim joined Cambridge’s executive group in 1999, and served at the broker-dealer level while continuing to lead his independent practice based in Baltimore alongside his wife and business partner, Helen. In that time, Jim was a major force on the Cambridge Board of Directors and provided senior executive leadership for Cambridge’s recruiting and marketing. Jim was instrumental in the development of Cambridge’s fee-based programs, and he also focused on supporting and improving the independent rep-advisor’s business through practice management, marketing initiatives, and product services that help streamline operations, accelerate revenue growth, and build practice equity, all of which were driven by his personal and professional conviction for business continuity and succession planning.
Our hearts are very heavy with his passing, and we will miss Jim as our dear friend. His passionate blogs are reminders of his perspective, insight, and voice.
Dan Sullivan is Senior Vice President of Marketing at Cambridge Investment, Inc. Sullivan joined Cambridge in July 2006 with 34 years of experience in the financial services industry. Since 1992, he has been President of Spectrum Financial Group, Inc., a successful Minneapolis-based firm specializing in Corporate Retirement Plans including TPA services, Investment Management and Comprehensive Planning for high net worth families through their Life Strategies Program. In his role as Senior Vice President of Marketing, Dan is particularly focused on expanding Cambridge’s Practice Management Division to help rep-advisors build their businesses.
Dan lives in both Fairfield, Iowa and Plymouth, Minnesota. He enjoys traveling, fishing, playing golf, and attending Minnesota Twins games both home and away.
Make Your Mark on Social Media
Mark Cohen is Assistant Vice President – Product Owner, Digital Media Projects at Cambridge Investment Research, Inc. With over 20 years of experience in digital media, Cohen offers his expertise to Cambridge and its rep-advisors. His career highlights include a decade worth of experience in traditional advertising, including a role as Executive Vice President for CCM, Inc. In those formative years he was active in the industry trade group, the PMA, where he was a founding member of the New York Chapter. He also taught promotion marketing, and later, the first web marketing class at NYU’s School of Continuing Education. In 1994, after co-producing the first concert broadcast on the web – The Rolling Stones live from Dallas, TX – he co-founded one of the first interactive marketing agencies in New York – Premiere Interactive Media – which he later sold to his partner when he was recruited to become Janus Capital’s first Webmaster.
A native New Yorker, Mark now resides in Fairfield, Iowa, with his wife Laura and their 3 children and is actively involved in the community through various board and volunteer associations. When he’s not keeping up with digital media, he enjoys the outdoors, music, movies, reading, cooking, and spending time with his family in their historic Fairfield home.
Barry Schmidt serves as the Vice President of Practice Management at Cambridge Investment Research Inc. Schmidt joined Cambridge in 2010 with over 25 years of experience, spanning retail and institutional markets on both coasts. His expertise includes sales, marketing and relationship management. He currently leads a dedicated team of practice management consultants–all focused on the development and success of independent rep-advisors and their independent businesses. His background includes serving as a managing director at Advisory Data Solutions and tenure as a vice president at National Planning Holdings. Barry attended Nassau College and holds FINRA Series 7, 63 and 65 licenses.
He currently resides in Iowa City with his wife, Karla and their children. In his free time he enjoys golfing, hiking, and spending time watching his son Evan (16) play football at Iowa City West.
Gabriel Cooper has been with Cambridge since 2001 and currently serves as the Director of Technology Consulting with the Practice Management Technology Consulting team. He works with a variety of technologies, but websites are his area of expertise and he has been designing websites and online communities for 15 years.
Gabe’s knowledge of the industry is vast due in part to his time spent in other departments at Cambridge including Operations, Compliance, IS, and Partner Support. As part of the IS and Partner Support Departments, he developed Cambridge’s Technology Consulting Program and originated the Cambridge Source Website service. He holds the Series 3, 7, 24, 53, and 66 licenses and is also a RCC (Registered Corporate Coach).
Born and raised in rural Missouri, Gabe is a Midwest native. He has two children and resides in Fairfield with wife Jaime.
Jeff Vivacqua joined Cambridge in 2010, bringing over 17 years of experience in the financial services industry. He holds a leadership role in managing all aspects of Continuity Partners Group including sales, marketing and operational. He earned a BS in finance from Southern Illinois University and has certificates in Personal Financial Planning and Facilitative Leadership Training programs. Jeff holds FINRA Series 4, 7, 24, 63, 66, and 79 licenses and is a member of the Financial Services Institute and served on the FSI Marketing and Advisory Services Council.
Jeff relocated to Fairfield in 2010 from Phoenix and while the golf season is a little shorter in Iowa, he has been getting more than his fair share of rounds in this year. He is originally from Chicago, so the family likes having him a little closer to home. He also enjoys racquetball, an occasional Vegas visit and most recently traveling abroad and he sees that adventure continuing next year with a planned visit to Italy.
Seth Miller has been with Cambridge since 2008 and is the Vice President, Corporate Legal and Risk. In this role he manages and oversees all internal and external legal affairs for Cambridge along with overseeing enterprise risk management. Seth earned a BS in finance and management from Iowa State University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Iowa College of Law. Seth holds FINRA Series 7, 24, and 66 licenses and is licensed to practice law before the Iowa and Missouri state bars.
Seth resides in Fairfield with his wife Diana. In his free time he enjoys making wine and playing with his two German shorthaired pointers.
Jim Silvers is a Senior Technology Liaison on the Practice Management Technology Consulting Team at Cambridge. In his current role, Jim reviews proposals from IT professionals, provides additional information on Cambridge-specific technology options, explains the difference between available software options, and analyzes his clients’ processes and workflow. He also makes it a priority to keep up-to-date on mobile technology, such as smartphones and tablets. Since joining Cambridge in 2006, Jim has held positions in Advisor Services, Practice Management, and as a registered principal in Operations. With his comprehensive technical knowledge, background, and customer service experience, he is able to consult with you about how to leverage technology in your practice in a more efficient manner. Jim graduated with an Associate in Applied Science (AAS) degree in criminal justice from Indian Hills Community College and worked for the Jefferson County Sheriff’s office for nine years prior to working at Cambridge. He currently holds FINRA Series 7, 24, and 66 licenses and has earned the Registered Corporate Coach™ designation.
Jim lives in Ollie, Iowa with his wife Jill Silvers (Partner Support) and their twin sons. In his free time he enjoys riding motorcycles, hunting, and being a Cub Scout leader.
Colleen Bell is the Assistant Vice President of Corporate Strategies. Colleen joined Cambridge in 2006 after working as a securities examiner for the Securities and Exchange Commission. She provides strategic direction in the development and execution of innovative business strategies. Colleen earned a BA in business from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and holds FINRA Series 7, 24, and 66 licenses, along with the AIF® (Accredited Investment Fiduciary®) designation.
Colleen enjoys her time outside of Cambridge with her husband, Ryan, and three little kids who do a wonderful job of reminding her about the little joys in life.