Learn About Us

Vanity Fair Lineup 2017
 

 

Our team is committed to your satisfaction.

Our approach begins with personalized attention from our team of skilled navigators dedicated to your success to help you Plan Well. Invest Well. Live Well.™

Our service experience and extensive training in investment strategy make us uniquely qualified in helping you define and monitor your financial life goals. We see each client not as a transaction, but as a relationship. We are there when you call, and we are listening to your needs each step of the way.

Laurence Hale, AAMS, CRPS®

Principal/Managing Partner,
Co-Founder & Chief Investment Officer

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“It is imperative to invest with rationale and with our clients’ risk tolerance in mind.  We offer the Plan Well. Invest Well. Live Well. process to our clients based on this premise of guidance and partnership.”

Laurence is a Principal and Founding Partner of Weiss & Hale Financial. He is Chief Investment Officer (CIO) leading portfolio management efforts and chairing the firm’s Investment Committee. In addition to developing goal-driven financial plans for clients, Laurence has extensive investment experience with estate planning and charitable strategies.

Laurence brings many years of institutional investment experience, having started his career in the Institutional Defined Contribution business for Putnam Investments. In addition to more than 20 years of investment management for our clients, Laurence has volunteered his professional talents on behalf of many non-profit and public institutions. He formerly served as an appointed member of Connecticut's Investment Advisory Council (IAC), an advisory body to the Connecticut State Treasurer in overseeing the approximately $29 billion in the State of Connecticut's retirement plans and trust funds, on behalf of over 200,000 beneficiaries.

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Laurence graduated from Hobart College in Geneva, New York, with a degree in economics and holds the designations of Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS) and Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist® (CRPS®) from the College for Financial Planning.

When not advising clients, Laurence is active with several nonprofit and charitable organizations. Laurence currently serves as Co-Chairman of the YMCA of Greater Hartford’s Investment Committee, as Chair for the Hale YMCA Youth & Family Center’s Board of Advisors and is completing his first term as Chairman of the Rectory School Board of Trustees. He is a former member of the Pomfret School Board of Trustees, Day Kimball Healthcare’s Finance Committee, past President of the Quinebaug Valley Community College (QVCC) Foundation, and over the years has supported many other organizations.

A native of Pomfret, Connecticut, he resides there with his wife, Jane, and their 3 children. In his free time, Laurence enjoys fly-fishing, hiking, golfing, and sailing.

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Laurence Hale is proud to have been recognized as a Summit Club advisor for 2016—a distinction based on annual production that places him among the top 22 percent of advisors affiliated with Commonwealth Financial Network.

Each year, Commonwealth, the broker/dealer–RIA that helps us process investment transactions on your behalf, recognizes Summit Club advisors by inviting them to an exclusive gathering of their peers, leading industry experts, and Commonwealth home office staff. Summit Club advisors benefit from an intensive learning and networking experience designed to help them hone their expertise, share best practices, and provide ever-higher levels of service, education, and leadership to their clients.

Laurence Hale is a Five Star Award Wealth Manager. 1

1Award winners are chosen based on 10 objective eligibility and evaluation criteria, including a minimum of 5 years as an active credentialed financial professional, favorable regulatory and complaint history, accepts new clients, client retention rates, client assets administered, education, and professional designations. 2,398 Connecticut wealth managers were considered for the award; 468 (20 percent of candidates) were named 2015 Five Star Wealth Managers. (The criteria provided reflects the most recent year for which advisor received the award. The criteria used, the number of wealth managers considered for the award, and the percentage of those who receive the award, may vary from year to year). These awards are not indicative of the wealth managers’ future performance. Your experiences may vary. For more information, please visit www.fivestarprofessional.com.

Heather O'Rourke

Lead, Client Financial Planning Services

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Heather anchors the Weiss & Hale Financial Service and Operations team. She has more than 16 years' experience with advisors Laurence and Jim and more than 25 years in the financial services business. She has been an integral part of the growth of the firm and the satisfaction of our clients. Heather has held positions at Paul Revere, First Union in Worcester; Merrill Lynch; and Advest, where she was honored with the distinguished Client Service Award. She holds a producer's license for life and health insurance, the FINRA Series 7 registration, and holds a Registered Paraplanner designation from the College for Financial Planning. Heather’s commitment delivers skilled, timely answers to client questions and due diligence to outstanding matters. She offers industry experience along with an extraordinary personal commitment to client service and the process of financial planning.

Heather has been a lifelong resident of northeastern Connecticut. She enjoys traveling, hiking and outdoor adventure. Heather is Board member at TEEG, helping empower residents in Northeastern Connecticut.  She enjoys volunteering at The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp for families and their children facing serious illness and is dedicated to helping rescue dogs in need at Dog Orphans Society in Douglas, Massachussetts. She is a devoted follower of U2, but above all else she is an incredibly loyal fan of the Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots.

James Zahansky, AWMA®

Principal/Managing Partner & Chief Goal Strategist

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Jim is Principal/Managing Partner at Weiss & Hale Financial, leading practice strategy, business development initiatives, and team leadership for the firm. Additionally, as our Chief Goals Strategist and Investment Advisor, Jim leads clients through our unique Plan Well, Invest Well, Live Well™ process to help them, reach their financial life goals.

Jim transitioned to these pivotal roles in the practice in 2014 after 17 years in the pharmaceutical industry as a senior executive where he developed and implemented strategies and initiatives for major US pharmaceutical brands. In his most recent past role, Jim was Vice President, Respiratory Division at Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc., where he was responsible for all US business and marketing strategies and initiatives for the company’s respiratory product portfolio which included 8 brands, a team of 300 people and $600MM in revenue. Since this transition to Weiss & Hale Financial, Jim has taken his years of strategic training and financial acumen to assist Weiss & Hale Financial clients in building strategies that align to their individual or organization’s goals.

Throughout his career, Jim developed strong skill sets in strategy, leadership, fundamental finance and interpersonal dynamics throughout his career and regards one’s character as their defining quality.

Jim is active in the community and serves on the Hale YMCA Board of Advisors where he was elected as Board Secretary. Jim also serves on the Northeastern Connecticut Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, and the Quinebaug Valley Community College Foundation Board. He graduated from Bryant University with a business degree and was appointed to the University's Wall Street Council, joining other high-powered, finance oriented alums who are focused on innovations in the investment industry.  Jim holds the designation of Accredited Wealth Management Advisor® (AWMA®) from the College for Financial Planning. Close to home, he leads the Frog Rock Youth Basketball Association as President. He has coached teams in basketball, Little League baseball and youth soccer leagues throughout the Last Green Valley. In his downtime, he enjoys basketball, biking, running and time with his wife, Melissa, and three children.

James Weiss, AAMS, RLP

Co-Founder & Partner

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Jim is Co-Founder and Partner at Weiss & Hale Financial with more than 30 years' experience helping individuals, families, and not-for-profits create solutions for their financial challenges and plans to achieve their goals. Jim specializes in life transitions effecting one’s financial outlook and holds an Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS) designation from the College for Financial Planning and is a Registered Life Planner® (RLP®). He is enrolled in the Sudden Money Institute, studying transitions, psychology, and money.

Jim is an Investment Adviser Representative of Commonwealth Financial Network®. He is a former first Vice President for Investments at both Merrill Lynch and Advest, Inc., and is a member of the Kinder Life Planning Network and a member of the International Coach Federation (ICF).  

Jim focuses on financial life planning, enabling people to first focus on their deeply held values and goals and then create a life plan (with financial structure) from that perspective. Jim enjoys working with clients regarding shifts, such as retirement, inheritance, and career changes. Jim contributes to the partner team providing tenured experience in the financial markets and client service.

Jim is a graduate of Northfield Mount Hermon and holds a BA from St. Lawrence University. In addition to serving two terms as representative in the Connecticut State House, Jim has a long history of community service, having served in leadership positions on many boards and commissions over the years. He enjoys tennis, golf, and yoga, and is an avid cook and baker. He lives in Pomfret with his wife, Nancy, a local columnist and fundraising consultant. They have two children: Hadley, who resides in the Hartford area, and Chelsea, who resides in the Boston area.

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Jim Weiss is proud to have been recognized as a Summit Club advisor for 2015—a distinction based on annual production  that places him among the top 23 percent of advisors affiliated with Commonwealth Financial Network

Each year, Commonwealth, the broker/dealer–RIA who helps us process investment transactions on your behalf, recognizes Summit Club advisors by inviting them to an exclusive gathering of their peers, leading industry experts, and Commonwealth home office staff. Summit Club advisors benefit from an intensive learning and networking experience designed to help them hone their expertise, share best practices, and provide ever-higher levels of service, education, and leadership to their clients.

Diego Briones

Project Manager, Marketing & Client Relationships

diego_briones_standing_516As Project Manager, Marketing, Diego serves a foundational role in providing dedicated support to client relationship and marketing sectors of the business. Diego came to Weiss & Hale Financial from the University of Connecticut’s School of Business, where he graduated summa cum laude. Starting as a Marketing and Operations Intern, Diego’s analytical and organizational skills have transitioned well into his current role with the business.

Interested in how organizations can effectively use data to inform policy decisions, Diego is currently pursuing his Master in Public Administration (MPA) at the University of Connecticut and plans to graduate in May 2018. Insights from his advanced coursework have helped bring effective change to Weiss & Hale Financial in strategic organizational planning, analysis, and policy implementation.

Outside of work, Diego is an avid soccer player. He has played at the collegiate varsity level and currently competes with the UConn’s Club Soccer team. He also enjoys traveling, especially to Chile, where much of his family still resides.

Camille Moulico

Associate, Administration & Client Services

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Camille joined the Client Service team at Weiss & Hale Financial in 2017 and comes from a background in event management and the hospitality industry. She graduated from Johnson & Wales University in 2014 with a degree in sports/entertainment/event management. Camille enjoys working with clients and combining reception and problem solving. Before Camille joined us at Weiss & Hale Financial, she worked with Aventi hosting and creating team-building activities for large Swedish corporations, including Fortune 500 company Volvo.

Camille lives in Brooklyn, Connecticut, with her husband, Bryan; their two dogs, Bauer and Harley; and their two cats, April and Chester. Camille was born and raised in Gothenburg, Sweden, and has lived in more than five countries. Camille spends most of her free time outdoors hiking, and she enjoys road trips and traveling. Camille also enjoys volunteering at animal shelters; she spent a year in Sweden driving the Swedish Animal Ambulance in her spare time. 

Shandy Chen

Associate, Client Operations & Service

shandy_chen_standing_516Shandy is a recent graduate of Hamilton College and joined the team in June 2017. He brings a wealth of talent in problem solving and data analysis, qualities he developed over time as an economics major and research tutor while at Hamilton. Currently in training to become our new lead on Client Operations and Service, Shandy will work alongside Heather O’Rourke in delivering timely and accurate service on new accounts, transactions, and account management.

Shandy is a graduate of Pomfret School and hails from Willington, Connecticut. In his free time, Shandy enjoys playing soccer and snowboarding. He also enjoys visiting China, where his parents grew up and most of his family still resides.