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Charles Goldman recruits his one-time Schwab leftenant to be his right-hand woman at AssetMark

Cathy Clauson fills newly created position related to TAMP sales

Author Brooke Southall April 25, 2014 at 12:08 AM
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Cathy Clauson will act as the connective tissue between sales and the C-suite.



Women of Wealth Management

Stephen Winks

Stephen Winks

April 25, 2014 — 10:04 PM

“Clauson’s back to doing all the things at the RIA custodian and turnkey asset management program that nobody else is sure how to do.”

True, but the devil is in the details.

The simple reason why Cathy is effective at doing things that nobody else knows how to do, is that she (a) has the uncommon scope of duty and the latitude to execute unprecedented in a brokerage or custody format, ( b) she can easily leverage the cultural inhibition and technical incompetency of the brokerage and custody format to support advisory services that thwart innovation in the consumer’s best interest and the professional standing of the broker and the RIA as well, Institutionalized inefficiencies in advisory services must be directly addressed to advance fiduciary duty and the loss of trust and confidence of the investing public. Advice must be actually acknowledged and supported if fiduciary liability is to be managed and the RIA achieve professional standing.

Cathy will quickly learn that (a) only through prudent process (with an audit path to statutory duty documented and authenticated) can expert standing be perfected and scale achieved so advisor gain control over their value proposition, cost structure, margins and professional standing, (b) a more modern approach to portfolio construction is required which shifts emphasis to prudent process and addressing and managing investment and administrative vales in the client’s best interest away from product distribution in the b/ds best interest around which the brokerage industry is built . (c) industry redefining disruptive innovation must be reconciled with AssetMark’s existing business mode in its transition from an expensive advice product which is sold by brokers in the b/ds best interest to a expert prudent process managed by advisors in the client’s best interest? Will the Asset Mark investment managers sell their intellectual capital divorced from expensive redundant account administration that adds no value, at far lower cost and far less administrative duties—thus making fiduciary standing possible by virtue of (i) the electronic management a far higher degree of portfolio detail, (ii) in real time, (iii) with no investment minimums, (iv) through the introduction of technological advances and more modern and less expensive approach to portfolio construction? Is this even possible in an existing business which would render packaged advice products and its limited advice obsolete? It is no question that modernity, professional standing and streamlining cost is the right direction, even for enterprising investment managers who will outdate the old, expensive and ineffective product distribution model that can not achieve individualized required by statute.

My guess is this level of disruptive innovation wins impressive market share in the client’s best interest, and supports professional standing of the advisor at lower cost to the consumer and better advisor compensation. It is not a question of what to do, it is a question of leadership and the latitude to execute.

Let’s root for Cathy, she has the latitude to execute at the moment, can she rely on that to fully execute the promise of advisory services?


Mike Golaszewski

Mike Golaszewski

April 25, 2014 — 11:14 PM

I have worked besides Cathy in various capacities since the late 90s (in fact, our affiliation began many years before the acronym “RIA” even existed). She is, in a word, amazing: a great leader, a skilled executer, and a close friend and confidant. She’s also damn smart—you’d be challenged to find somebody with more knowledge about the intricacies of our industry than Ms. Clauson. Not to mention that she can can get things done.

Her arrival—along with the leadership of Charles Goldman (another one of the sharpest and most inspirational leaders I’ve had the privilege of serving under)—portends great things for AssetMark.

I am extremely excited for her and wish her the best of luck in her new role. Go Cathy!!!

Jim Hazeltonski

Jim Hazeltonski

April 26, 2014 — 4:59 PM

I don’t know the woman but c’mon, has she cured cancer?

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