The Best Financial Planners in Dallas

* To read the story, The Money Makers, by Dawn McMullian, please click "next" at the bottom of the page.

How We Did It: To compile our list of the top financial planners in Dallas-Fort Worth, we mailed ballots to 1,000 Certified Financial Planners and asked them to nominate five individuals they would recommend to their own family members. For a ballot to count, each CFP had to nominate two financial planners outside his company and three financial planners either inside or outside his company. We did not allow self-nominations. And though the balloting was limited only to CFPs, the awards were not. The voters could choose respected financial planners from any of the various professional certifications.


WHAT IT MEANS

A problem with the financial planning industry is that terms like “financial planner,” “financial adviser,” and “financial consultant” can’t be trademarked. They are what “tax adviser” is to Certified Public Accountant. But a Certified Financial Planner is just that—certified. A CFP must take a certain number of hours of coursework, commit to continuing education, sign a code of ethics, and pass a rigorous test. The exam itself, which some attorneys have failed, takes 10 hours over two days to complete.

The importance of the CFP is still a hotly debated issue among financial planners. Basically, anyone—from the guy who sells you insurance on his third day at work to the woman who majored in financial planning, passed the day-and-a-half long CFP exam, and has been in the industry for at least three years—can call themselves a financial planner.

That’s not to say someone must have a certification to be a wonderful financial planner. The concern from the pro-CFP group is that many people dabble in financial planning. And why hire a dabbler when you could have someone who specializes?

While CFP should be your financial planner’s primary designation, there are other good additions. Here are a few you might run across.

CLU (Chartered Life Underwriter): This is the highest credential in the insurance industry, given by the American College, a nonprofit institution founded by the insurance industry to promote higher standards.

ChFCs (Chartered Financial Consultant): Also offered by the American College, this is a financial planning designation that is not quite as intense as CFP. Although the education is almost identical, the CFP exam is far more rigorous. The ChFC is basically the insurance industry’s attempt to broaden into other specialties.

CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst): The educational designation focuses on the investment side of financial planning.

CIMA (Certified Investment Management Analyst): Also known as the CIMC (Certified Investment Management Consultant), the CIMA is the junior to the CFA—similar investment material, not as intense.

Asset Managers: While not a true professional designation, asset managers generally manage your assets without getting into the complications of true financial planning.

Industry Experts: Banks, accounting firms, insurance companies, and brokerage firms all have a hand in financial planning. While their main areas of expertise would be in their chosen industry, many are trying to broaden into true financial planning.

 


Gary Ahr, ChFC, CLU Sagemark Consulting

Lance Alston, CFP JWA Financial Group

Gerald Baker, CLU, CFC Baker Financial Services

Jeff Bellinghausen, CFP American Express Financial Advisors Bellinghausen & Associates

Robert H. Berg, CFP Carter Financial Management

Steve Blankenship, CFP Heritage Financial Planning

Erin Botsford, CFP, CRPC Lincoln Financial Advisors

Mike Busch, CFP Vogel Financial Advisors

Dennis Carpenter, CFP International Wealth Management

Holly Carroccio, CFP HFG Advisors

Bill Carter, CFP Carter Financial Management

Edmond Cherry, CFP Diesslin & Associates

Bryan Clintsman, CFP Clintsman Financial Planning

Jonathan Cott, CFP AXA Advisors

Guy Cumbie, CFP Cumbie Advisory Services

Dave Diesslin, CFP Diesslin & Associates

Carol Doerr, CFP, CPA Kemple Capital

Patrick Dougherty, MBA Wells Fargo

David Downs, CFP AXA Advisors

Mary Durie, CFP Quest Capital Management

Wendy S. Edwards, CFP JP Morgan Investments

Charles R. Elhoff, CFP, ChFC, CLU Elhoff Financial Counseling

Bobby “Chip” Eubank, CFP Eubank Financial Group

Barry Evans, CFP, CFA Southwest Strategies

Greg Galbraith, CFP A.G. Edwards

Jaime Galvan, CFP Spectrum Strategies

Bill Gammill Stonebriar Financial Group

Frances Gardner, CFP Ayres Financial Group

Greg Gardner, CFP The Gardner Group

Alan Goldfarb, CFP Weaver and Tidwell Financial Advisors

Craig Greenway, CFP Southwest Strategies

Mark Griege, CFP Robertson, Griege, Thole

Joan Gruber, CFP JM Gruber Advisors

Patty Hammond, CFP Carter Financial Management

Jeff Holler, CFP The Capital Chart Room

Dulany Howland, CFP G. Dulany Howland Advisory

Ryan Huey, CFP Perryman Financial Advisory

Michael Jarvis, CFP AXA Advisors

Diana Jenkins, CFP First Horizon Investment & Insurance Services

Barry Johnson, CFP Johnson Financial Group

Sarah E. Johnson, CFP, CPA HFG Advisors

Richard Joyner, CFP, CPA, CIMA Tolleson Private WealthManagement

Glenda D. Kemple, CFP, CPA Kemple Capital

Hilary L. Kent, CFP, CRPC Lincoln Financial Advisors

Greg Krewson, CFP AXA Advisors

Carl Kunhardt, CFP Quest Capital Management

John A. Kvale, CFA, CFP JK Financial

Chris Leap, CFP American Express Financial Advisors

Bryan Lee, CFP Strategic Financial Planning

Charles C. Lee, CFP American Express Financial Advisors

Richard Lee, CFP Lee Financial Corp.

Pat Lium, CFP Fortune Financial Services

Brenda Mahon, ChFC, CLU, AEP Lincoln Financial Advisors

Kevin W. Margolis, CPA, PFS Strategic Financial Management Group

Dan Mauck, CFP Clintsman Financial Planning

Kalita McCarthy, CFP Quest Capital Management

Wayne McCullough, AAMS A.G. Edwards

Lynn B. McIntire, CFP, CLU First Horizon Investment &Insurance Services

Tom McIntire, CFP Carter Financial Management

Jeff McNaughton, CFP AXA Advisors

Sher Miller, CPA Sher Miller Financial Services

Christopher Moino, CFP Smith Barney

Cyndy Montgomery, CFP, CPA, MBA Lincoln Financial Advisors

Greg Morgan, CFP Strategic Management Group

Gary Morris, CFP Morris Financial Services

Kathy Muldoon, CFP Carter Financial Management

Colleen M. O’Donnell, CFP, CSA Lincoln Financial Advisors

Larry Ohlen, CFP AXA Advisors

Bill Perryman, CFP, CPA Perryman Financial Advisory

Jimmy Perryman, CFP Perryman Financial Advisory

Dana Pingenot, CFP Lee Financial Corp.

J. Michael Reppert, CFP, CSA Spectrum Strategies

Eddie Rodriguez, CFP Lee Financial Corp.

Barbara Saunders, CFP Saunders & Associates

Jeff Schuetts, CFP LPL Financial

Tara Scottino, CFP Carter Financial Management

Roger Shake, CFP Legacy Consulting Group

Bob Stowe, CFP Stowe Financial Planning

Viktor Szucs, CFP Quest Capital Management

Trudy Turner, CFP Rench & Muir Financial Advisors

Steven G. Wachs, CFP Legacy Consulting Group

Doug Wakefield, CFP, MS Generations Advisors

David W. White Strategic Financial Management Group

Christie Williams, CFP Lee Financial Corp.

Damon Wykrent, CFP Saunders & Associates

Christopher Young, CFP Quest Capital Management

Penny Young, CFP Robertson, Griege & Thoele