Focusing on People
As a CPA and Audit Manager with Price Waterhouse & Co., Keith Cantrell got particular satisfaction from working closely with the businesses owners that were his clients.
He wanted to continue building relationships and helping clients realize their financial dreams. So in 1982, Keith and his wife, Debbie, who was a commercial lending officer of the Northern Trust Bank, founded Evanston Investments. Since they each came from a fee-based background, they established a fee-based business, which was fairly unusual at the time. But Keith believed that by being fee-based rather than product-driven, he would be better able to provide unbiased, customer-focused advice.
As a young firm, Evanston developed an expertise guiding business owners, especially those transitioning through a succession or sale, as well as individuals with complex assets. Wealth accumulation was the by-product for many of these clients, often through the sale of their business, and they wanted us to manage that money.
Our clients felt that, having guided them through some of the most complex and important financial decisions of their lives, Evanston would be the right partner to help them continue on their journey.
In response to the need to add investment management services, Keith called on Nathan Snodgrass, a young professional with aspirations of becoming a Portfolio Manager.
Nathan was hired in 1993 to assist with the development of the firm's professional portfolio management responsibilities. Nathan's training as a CFA charter-holder and Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®) would prove to be invaluable in the establishment of Evanston's practice of long-term balanced asset allocation investing.
Nathan’s passion for designing and building effective client investment portfolios has become the solid foundation of Evanston’s Model Portfolio Allocation Strategies today. His expertise in counseling high-net-worth families allows him to introduce investing strategies to ensure that the wealth they have created and harvested is used to fulfill their unique objectives. Success, sound discipline, and commitment to the firm earned Nathan an equity partner position in 1998.
Finding the Right Fit
After Dave Jackson sold his home health care business, he found himself, for the first time in his life, with cash to invest.
Dave sought advice from the financial experts he had relied on as a business owner and he ended up as a client of one of the major wirehouses. But his experience there left him feeling empty. As an entrepreneur, he was used to being in charge and understanding what was going on.
But the wirehouse did not keep him informed, did not reach out to him, did not respond in a meaningful way to his questions. Even the financial plan the firm did for Dave seemed to him to reflect the underlying problem: it looked impressive, but it did not reflect the reality of Dave and his family. And how could it, since the broker did not really know much about Dave and his family?
Through a series of introductions, Dave met Keith Cantrell. He discovered that Evanston placed the highest value on communication and building relationships. Our firm understood that as an entrepreneur, he had a high tolerance for risk, but he also had a fear of losing the money that represented his life's work. He found people who were willing to get to know and understand him in working to achieve his goals. Dave bought a one-third interest in the firm and is now a principal of Evanston, building relationships with clients who, like him, want to understand and be part of their own financial future.
Today, Evanston Advisors is a collection of talented professionals investing themselves in others by helping them accomplish their financial goals.
We work alongside successful people helping them to harvest wealth from their businesses, to plan for financial security, and to invest with a focused discipline on achieving balanced long-term results.