During his career, Patrick has worked with hundreds of families and individuals, and is guided by the belief that financial planning is about people and relationships, not money and financial products.As a result, Patrick has developed a holistic approach to planning that begins and ends with a person’s life goals. He helps individuals protect and grow their wealth in a way that helps them achieve the goals they set for their families and themselves.
“Individuals arrive in our office with a variety of expectations and fears, explains Pat. “I hope they leave meetings with us confident that they have a thoughtful and experienced ally who will help them work through important decisions about their present and their future.”
In addition to his knowledge of financial planning, Patrick is a student of human behavior. “When I see that a person’s emotions are clouding their perceptions and undermining their financial decisions, my goal is to put people back in charge.”
Patrick wrote a book about naming and taming the emotional elephants that can take over our financial decisions, Tame Your Money Elephants (Apple Ridge Press, 2016). Pat also created The Lifestyle Protector Process™, a proprietary process that puts individuals on a path to enjoying life to the fullest.
After a childhood spent living in some of the world’s hotspots (Hungary, Iran, Burma (now Myanmar) and Laos), Patrick returned to the US to earn a bachelor’s degree from Virginia Tech. He subsequently received his Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) designation and Master of Science in Financial Services degree from The American College Of Financial Services.Patrick and Julie, his wife of 30+ years, share a love of adventure.
They have visited numerous countries for both business and pleasure and have launched two daughters. They are members of the DC chapter of Le Bailliage du Greater Washington, part of the Confrérie de la Chaîne des Rôtisseurs. Together, they participate in the club’s activities celebrating fine cuisine.
For example, Todd might ask, “You’ve told me you are concerned that you’ll outlive your money? Why?” Or “The possibility of needing long-term care isn’t on your radar. Why?” Or, “You’d rather take out a second mortgage than ask your child to take out a loan to pay for grad school? Why?”
“Ultimately,” Todd explains, ”Every person has different goals, experiences, emotions and skills. Through asking and answering lots of questions, we ultimately produce financial plans that allow people to live their lives fully.”
Todd is curious 24/7. In his free time, he travels to exotic destinations and figures out how to cook recipes better at home than the chefs in his favorite restaurants. But Todd is a questioner in his career as well. He’s been looking for a better way to solve problems for individuals and business owners from his early days with a major brokerage house and insurance company, to his years in multinational and community banks.
At Obsidian, Todd has found a home. “I really enjoy connecting questions to solutions as an advocate, not as a salesperson. My greatest satisfaction comes from finding solutions to problems people assumed were unsolvable, then seeing their faces when I offer several alternatives.” It isn’t surprising that Todd has earned the role of trusted confidante to so many of Obsidian’s clients.
In addition to his CFP®, Todd holds a degree in finance from The Smeal College of Business at The Pennsylvania State University. He is a Maryland native and currently lives in Gaithersburg with his wife Gabryela and son Ethan.
After working in business insurance sales for several years, Pam originally joined Obsidian’s marketing department. Over time, she added Series 7 and CFP® qualifications to her already strong background in finance and today focuses on financial planning for individuals.
On a daily basis, Pam gathers information, analyzes data, makes planning recommendations and is a key member of the team that reviews all plans prior to submission to clients for approval and implementation.
“It is during the information-gathering process that I have the most contact with our clients,” Pam says. “But planning gives me the opportunity to establish long-term relationships—no, friendships—with people. That’s what I love.” She adds, “Creating financial plans is challenging and rewarding, but getting to know so many clients as friends keeps me coming to work every day.”
What does this diehard Pittsburgh Steelers fan do during the offseason? “I’m a huge sports fan and active volunteer.” Of all her volunteer “jobs,” Pam enjoys teaching first and second grade Sunday school classes the most. She is an avid hiker: canyons, national parks and soon, the route between two 1000-year-old European capitals.
Pam earned her bachelor’s degree in Business Administration/Marketing from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and her MBA in Finance and Investments from The George Washington University.
While Sean is experienced in creating those recommendations, “I really enjoy sitting down with clients to explain the pros and cons of each investment vehicle in both up and down markets.”Once clients are matched with their ideal investment mix, Sean monitors portfolios to keep them aligned with their original goals.
He also keeps a finger on the pulse of various markets and fund performance metrics. In the process, he stays in contact with clients to re-balance portfolios as necessary and answer their questions.Using goals, rather than product, as a starting point is what drew Sean to Obsidian nearly 20 years ago. “For years, my job was to fit the individual to the product. Flipping that process to make it totally client-centered leads to better outcomes and happier clients. And when clients are happy, I’m happy,” Sean says.
Sean attended the University of New Haven and The George Washington University. He and his wife have three children and one granddaughter, and Sean looks forward to sharing his love of golf and fishing with more grandchildren soon.