The Early Years
When I was young, my brother and I would sit on the arms of my grandmother’s favorite chair. She would divide the contents of her coin purse between the two of us and say, “Take this money home and put it in your banks. Save it for something important.” I have been a saver ever since.
Upon graduation from the University of California, Berkeley with a degree in cultural anthropology, I had no career path per se. One of my earliest ‘real’ jobs was cooking – I was good at it and enjoyed it. With that skill, I was able to put myself through college. As a freshly minted baccalaureate, I found myself considering cooking for my first career – I didn’t really know what else to do with my degree!
Encouraged by an influential mentor at the time, I decided to become a chef. I knew this career path wouldn’t necessarily lead to a gold watch and a pension. There were already concerns that Social Security wouldn’t be there when baby boomers needed it. I realized that I would have to save and invest for my future.
My aspiration was to be a chef at Chez Panisse and within four years, I had my dream job. However, as much as I enjoyed cooking, I was becoming more and more interested in finance and investments. I took a class in personal financial planning and was hooked, and decided to change careers. Returning to school to get a Masters degree in Finance was the next step – I was going into the investment business!
After earning my Masters in Business Administration in Finance, I worked in investment research and portfolio management at a couple of very large companies in San Francisco. But big company life really didn’t suit me. I like working closely with people. Like cooking for people, I wanted to do something that was a little more personal.
In 2008, I founded Stoffer Wealth Advisors in Marin county, during the Great Recession. While it sounded and felt crazy at the time, it also felt important to me, as if I was called to the profession. People needed investment and financial planning help more than ever. During a time of great stress and loss they needed to see a way back to wealth and prosperity. I believe that wealth is defined by more than just financial assets. It is in the way one sees the possibilities in life; it is in enjoying a sense of abundance while living in a financially sustainable way.
Money is one of the top stressors in people’s lives. Many decisions involving money aren’t just about the numbers…they involve emotions, values and priorities. Sometimes the numbers have to take a back seat to some of these other considerations. But we need to do this in a conscious way, evaluating the possibilities and assessing the risks.
That is why, at Stoffer Wealth Advisors, we offer our customers a uniquely multi-dimensional approach. The role of money in your life and your dreams and goals are included in the conversation. This allows you to make smart financial decisions that are also tailor-made for you.
As a financial advisor in Marin County for over 17 years, we have a wealth of experience to serve you. We invite you to try our “recipe for success.” Contact our office for a complimentary introductory session.
CFA Society of San Francisco
Member since 1994
Financial Planning Association of San Francisco
Member since 2007
CFO of the Board of Directors, 2008-2012
10,000 Degrees (formerly Marin Education Fund)
Homeward Bound Benefit
Volunteer event organizer, September 2010
San Rafael Chamber of Commerce Leadership Institute
Program participant, 2008