You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today. - Abraham Lincoln
Nov 17, 2020 | By: Jennifer Falat
Standing left to right - Karen Alleva, Tanner Saile, and Tyler Saile. Sitting left to right - Ed Scoby, Tor Saile, and David Andrews.
I recently had the pleasure of working with the team at Ironwood Family Wealth Advisors. Two partners, Ed Scoby and Tor Saile, participated in an interview with me.
Tell us about Ironwood Family Wealth Advisors, and what made you choose Barrington as home base?
Ed: We started back in 2010, when David Andrews and I left our downtown Chicago firms. Tor came and joined us a short while later. Barrington made sense to us as we’ve raised our families here and have been involved in the community in many ways.
Tor: I’ve lived in South Barrington for over 25 years so when I started my own firm, it only made sense to make Barrington home. Joining Ed and Dave in forming Ironwood Family Wealth Advisors was just a natural extension of that.
Would you summarize what people should expect when working with Ironwood?
Ed: Our clients gain confidence and clarity, knowing where they stand in relation to their goals. This helps them make better life decisions.
Let’s get to know the team and introduce everyone.
David Andrews was at JP Morgan for nearly two decades where he led a team working with high-net-worth families, and where he was also a trust officer. Dave and his wife Julie have two sons, Graham and Justin, and are avid RV’ers.
Ed Scoby started at Baird in downtown Chicago and would ride the train with Dave where they decided to start our firm. Like Dave, Ed is a CFP and takes a planning approach to his work. Ed and his wife Emily have three kids, Andrew, Will and Isabella.
Tor Saile had bought and sold several companies prior to joining Northwestern Mutual in 1997. He later left to start his own firm at LPL Financial (our broker dealer) and then helped form Ironwood with Dave and Ed. He enjoys fishing, golfing and spending time with friends and family. He and his wife, Tricia, have four children, two sons Tyler and Tanner (who both work at our company) and twin daughters, Sarah and Samantha.
What sets Ironwood apart from the bigger names in the business?
Ed: The main thing, besides our local focus, is that we’re truly independent. We are fiduciaries and have the freedom to choose what’s best for our clients from a variety of solutions. We custom tailor portfolios and financial plans for each of our client families.
Tor: I agree with Ed and would also say that we limit the relationships we work with, which allows us to spend a lot of time with our clients. Our clients expect more from us. They like the fact that we’re proactive in managing custom portfolios and not just putting them into model allocations. This can dramatically impact the tax ramification of their investments.
I understand all partners and advisors live in the area. How does it affect you personally knowing your business decisions are impacting families that may live in your neighborhood, or you may see at church and around town?
Ed: We know that our work makes a real difference in financial outcomes for our friends and neighbors, just as it does for our own families. We take that responsibility seriously and are gratified to be in that position of trust and discretion.
Tor: I completely agree with Ed. It’s not always easy to work with friends because we strive to keep our business and personal relationships separate. But they certainly know we have their backs. Virtually all of our clients have, over time, become friends as well and seeing them succeed is a blessing.
How has personal investing changed from when you opened your doors till now?
Ed: Two positive changes are the lowered cost at the investment level---primarily due to our use of index funds---and the emergence of impact and socially-responsible investing. Our clients want to invest in a way that’s consistent with their values. We provide that.
Tor: We now have the ability to use different custodians for our clients’ portfolios including LPL Financial, TD Ameritrade, and coming soon, Charles Schwab. We’ve also upgraded our technology platforms and use various online tools to better collaborate with our clients.
With the everchanging financial climate, what is one piece of advice you can offer to our readers?
Ed: Keep the faith and continue to invest despite the headlines. Markets have always recovered and they always will. A consistent, disciplined strategy is what wins in the end.
Tor: I would agree---those people that panicked when the markets were down 40% in March may never recover from that. Unfortunately, we see that and hear those stories all the time. Be opportunistic and don’t let headlines and fear guide you.
I understand that the Ironwood staff are involved with multiple charities. Would you tell us about some of the local organizations that you have worked with?
Ed: We support Samaritan Counseling Center which provides counseling for people in our area regardless of ability to pay. We also are involved in Music: Food for Life which brings together local musicians to raise funds for Northern Illinois Food Bank. I'm also on the board of Big Shoulders Fund which helps support values-based schools in Chicago’s inner city.
Tor: For many years I was actively involved with Cystic Fibrosis, Alexian Brothers Healthcare (now Amita Healthcare) and various high school booster clubs. I’ve recently become involved with the Boys and Girls Club of Dundee.
Which area restaurants are the favorites amongst your team?
Ed: We really like Region. Consistently excellent food and a great wine menu.
Tor: We tend to spend a lot of time at Moretti’s, just a fun and casual place to enjoy good friends.
Would each of you tell us a little-known fact or talent about yourself?
Ed: I like to grow things and have been an avid gardener for many years. If I ever retire, I’d love to start a specialty farm to provide produce for local restaurants and families.
Tor: First of all, Ed, that’s really cool, I didn’t even know the second part of your comment. I would say that most people don’t really know that I’m an introvert. I love being around friends and people but I’d be just as happy sitting at home by myself watching a Hallmark movie. Wait, did I just admit to that?
Ed: You did, my friend, and now the secret is out!
Past performance is no guarantee of future results. Securities offered through LPL Financial, Member FINRA/SIPC. Investment Advice offered through Sequoia Wealth Management, a registered investment advisor. Sequoia Wealth Management, Ironwood Family Wealth Advisors and LPL Financial are separate entities.