California-based financial advisory firm Fieldman, Rolapp & Associates is expanding to Seattle and bolstering its base with two new hires.
Un Chu Reardon, hired as a senior vice president, comes over from Raymond James’ Seattle office. Reardon, who was originally hired to work for Raymond James in San Francisco, will launch a new regional practice area for Fieldman in Washington.
Until now, the 50-year-old firm’s business had been concentrated in California. The firm ranked eighth among Far West financial advisors, credited with par volume of $2 billion in 2018, according to Refinitiv data. The firm typically ranks among the top five for financial advisors in the region.
“We weren’t looking at the Pacific Northwest on the immediate horizon, but we knew expanding there was something we wanted to do long-term,” said Adam Bauer, who has been Fieldman’s chief executive officer since 2016. “She accelerated those plans.”
Reardon has more than 20 years of public finance experience, at both investment banking and financial advisory firms. In addition to leading the firm’s expansion into the Seattle area, she is expected to strengthen its presence in California, Bauer said. She adds quantitative depth and a teamwork approach that fits well with the firm’s culture, he said.
“I have known Un Chu for more than 15 years,” Bauer said. When he discovered she was interested in joining the firm, he said, he moved quickly to make an offer.
Fieldman’s other new hire, Rachel Chang-Kwei, will work in the Irvine, California, office as a vice president.
She has more than 12 years of public finance experience specializing in school finance. She came from Cooperative Strategies and will help the firm grow its K-14 school practice and add charter schools as a new practice sector.
“Rachel has established herself as a leader in the K-14 area,” Bauer said.
Her experience in land-based transactions also complements Fieldman’s work with community facilities districts for school districts, he said.
Building a deep bench helps protect the firm during economic cycles or changes in the industry, Fieldman said.
“We want another 50 years and we want a team that’s able to do that,” he said. “We have been successful by putting really good people in front of our clients and will continue to do that.”
Fieldman is a founding member of the National Association of Municipal Advisors, the trade association which provides and promotes educational efforts for municipal financial advisors and is a registered municipal advisor with the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board.