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August 25, 2020

Celebrating Carroll Financial’s 40th Anniversary

Summer 2020 Quarterly Newsletter

Author: Larry W. Carroll, CFP®

The second week of August marked Carroll Financial’s 40th anniversary.

I was working at a large CPA firm in 1980, but met one of the pioneers of the financial planning movement while I was in graduate school. The idea that financial planning made sense as a service and the conviction that it fit my skill set would not let me walk away from starting a firm of my own.

My wife Vivian still says she thought it was all talk until the day I came home and told her I had resigned from the job I had worked so hard to land. My partner and I started with 600 square feet in a building on Park Road and hired an assistant to work 20 hours a week. We had no clients. We had no direct experience in the business of independent financial advice. Our wives supported us for three years while we figured out the business and for that I am forever grateful. The good news is that we ended up figuring out the business.

Carroll Financial now has 59 employees in three offices in Charlotte, Raleigh and my hometown of Rock Hill. I never set a goal of having a large firm. Instead, I simply focused on building a great firm that provided the highest quality advice, service and client experience. When you do good work, growth naturally follows. I am thankful for the clients who have provided that growth. We have several clients who have been with us for twenty or thirty years and a number who have been with us for more. They have become friends we care about personally and professionally. I consider these long-term clients to be a true blessing.

If I count my blessings, I have to include long-term associates of the firm who have been huge contributors to our success. Kelly Graves has been with Carroll Financial for 36 years and John Patterson for 34 years. Carl Brooks retired after 27 years. Christine Neese joined us in 1991, Linda Mander in 1995, Kris in 1998 and Gayla Little in 1999. Marty Moore, Mark Dillon, Bud Hedstrom, James Hedstrom, Bill Trahan and Sandy Cleasby have all been a part of the team for more than 20 years.

Deanna Fisher started working with the firm in 2000, as did Mike Jette and Jonathan Liles. As Kris takes over the leadership of Carroll Financial and we think about the future, I am proud that we have developed an infrastructure and a team of professionals who can take the firm into the future, maybe for another 40 years.

I want to express a sincere thank you to everyone who has been a part of this process. It has been a great ride.

This article was featured in our Summer 2020 Quarterly Newsletter available here:

Carroll Financial, Quarterly Newsletter

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