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Gerardo Martin

Financial Advisor

Waddell & Reed

1700 Second St Suite 100, Napa Ca 94559

707- 255-3733

www.gerardomartin.wrfa.com

Gerardo Martin of Waddell & Reed in Napa is a winner of North Bay Business Journal's 2018 Latino Business Leadership Awards.

Professional background: Financial adviser

Education: Series 7, 66, Life Insurance

Tell us your story and that of your organization: I joined Waddell & Reed in April of 2006. Waddell & Reed has been in business since 1937, it is one of the oldest mutual fund companies. I joined Waddell & Reed because I believe strongly that financial planning is key to everyone’s financial success.

If you know where you want to go, and you know where you are, all you need is a plan. I wanted to be able to help my clients in this journey and to give them the tools that they need to make their own success story.

Over the years I have been honored to work with my clients in planning for retirement, to send their children to college, and protecting their loved ones through various forms of insurance or just simply invest for their future.

Is there a major accomplishment in the past year or so that you would like to share?

I am very proud to be instrumental in taking the Napa County Latino Leaders Round Table Luncheons to the next level. A couple colleagues and I started the luncheons about six years ago. We meet monthly and discuss current community concerns with a guest speaker, usually an elected official. In the past we had anywhere from 20 to 30 or up to 40 attendees.

This year I worked on making the luncheons more successful and through a lot of hard work was able to turn it into 60 to 75 attendees on a regular basis.

You bring a group of people together in one room, feed them good food and allow the conversation to flow and amazing things will come out of it.

What is the achievement you are most proud of?

The one thing in my life that I will always be the most proud of is raising my three children as a single father. It was the most challenging and the most rewarding all at the same time.

I am so proud of who each of them has grown into. Believe me, it took a village and I am so happy that I had a village that I could rely on.

What is your biggest challenge today?

My biggest challenge today is having enough time in the day to do everything I want to do. My team is growing to meet the demand of my business. I got into this business to help the people that needed it the most. I take great pride in helping my clients reach their goals.

Words that best describe you: This is a tough one. I’ve been called humble and a leader. I think I would consider myself a connector. I connect people to who they need to be talking to

Actually, I’m just lucky enough to be surrounded by very smart people that allow me to be the face of the organization. AKA, the Napa County Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Napa County Latino Leaders Round Table.

As a successful professional, what were the biggest obstacles you faced and how did you overcome them?

In 2006 I was a brand new financial adviser. I was starting my business and was very excited. In 2008 we had the huge market down turn and everyone was fearful of the market. People lost money in their investments, their 401ks were down and they were thirsty for knowledge and guidance

Gerardo Martin

Financial Advisor

Waddell & Reed

1700 Second St Suite 100, Napa Ca 94559

707- 255-3733

www.gerardomartin.wrfa.com

Through that crazy time I was able to grow my business by being that person who reached out and called the people who were worried about what they should do. The word got out that I was open for business and people came to see me.

How do you think your profession will change in the next five years?

There are always a multitude of reasons why our business changes. There are a lot of new regulations that protect the consumer that is a good thing. There are also robo advisers and many do it yourselfers. I believe most people like the one on one service that I provide. As a business I am constantly adapting to new ways of doing business.

Who was your most important mentor?

As a kid growing up in St. Helena in a household of six kids and a father who worked in the vineyards, my dad was my most important mentor. He taught me to work hard for what you want. He taught me that you can be and do anything. He worked hard every day of his life and loved every minute of it.

Tell us about your community involvement: I first got involved in the Napa County Hispanic Chamber back in 2007. Since then, I have been the president six out of the last 10 years. I have also been involved in the Napa Valley College Foundation since 2012, serving as president two years ago. This has opened the doors for me to serve on the Community Outreach Committee at Queen of the Valley for the last 5 years. I am a founder of the Latino Leaders Round Table Luncheon and have been doing that for the last six years.

What advice would you give to a young person today?

As strange as it sounds, I would tell today’s young people to be patient. We live in a world of instant gratification and needing to have the latest and greatest. Many young people today want what took their parents 20 years to obtain, in one month.

It may have taken their parents 20 years to finally be able to afford a brand new car or to buy that furniture they always wanted.

Today, with credit being so available and the promise of higher paying jobs, young people are not afraid to go into debt. They buy the new car, fully furnish their new apartment and then do not have any money left over to save for the future.

Someday they will want to buy a home and they won’t be able to because of all the debt they are carrying. Be patient, save your money, invest in your future and most of all, stay out of debt.

Quick takes…

Most admired businessperson outside your organization: I would have to say the owners of the Warriors. They have taken a franchise that was mediocre at best and in a few short years turned it into a power house that very few imagined. They have done it through careful planning.

Most want to meet: As this list grows, it also gets checked off as I have had the opportunities to meet people. Last year I got to play golf with Cheech Marin. A few years ago, I was lucky enough to meet Chris Gardner from “The Pursuit of Happyness”. Today I would most like to meet former President Barack Obama.

Stress relievers: One of my biggest stress relievers is playing a round of golf. It tends to make me think about nothing but hitting the ball, at least while I am on the golf course. I also enjoy a nice ride on my Harley. Something about getting out on Sunday mornings after church and riding up and down this beautiful valley just relaxes me.

Favorite hobbies: Again, I would have to say that playing golf is one of my favorite hobbies. For some reason I also enjoy working in my yard. I love the smell of fresh cut grass.

Is there something we didn’t ask that you would like to add?

I am extremely honored to have been chosen to receive this award. Thank you!