Financial Planning for Women
What would be possible if you were financially confident, if your money worries went away and you were free to spend your time and energy on the things that are truly important? What would change for you?
We believe if more women were financially secure and exercised their economic power, the world would be a better place. We help our clients build confidence, resilience and joy in their lives. It’s not just about the money!
In truth, women of a certain age are faced with a particular set of problems around the goal of retirement. Especially women who are facing it on their own. And the traditional financial services industry is ill-equipped to handle this problem.
What do you need to achieve this goal?
You need someone who listens empathetically, who asks the right questions, and who helps you figure out the answers.
We work to create safe space to have very personal conversations, because money touches all the most important parts of our lives. Our goal is to empower you to make wise financial decisions, which are
- in alignment with your values,
- in harmony with the details of your personal situation, and
- made with a full understanding of what jobs your money needs to do for you.
Founder and CEO
Stephanie founded Sofia Financial in 2011 after 14 years as a financial advisor, with the goal to empower women to make wise financial decisions and reduce their money stress. In her early years she encountered too many women who found finances and investing so intimidating that they either outsourced money decisions to a man in their lives (sometimes with disastrous consequences), or relied on “professionals” who too often focused more on their own paycheck than providing true education and guidance.
After one particular meeting, she was finally spurred to do something about it. It was with a 62-year-old woman, who out of fear had postponed signing up for the company retirement plan for over 20 years! The woman admitted she nearly skipped their meeting too, but at the end she was so relieved and happy, she gave Stephanie a huge hug. That hug galvanized Stephanie to create a business to address the problem.
Financial planning is a rewarding profession and plays into Stephanie’s love of hearing people’s stories, and understanding and explaining complex topics clearly. She is passionate about helping more women find this career path. In her free time she loves cooking, sailing, traveling, and reading mystery novels with strong female characters.
Stephanie is married and has two kids in college. She earned an M.A. in International Economics from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and a B.A. from Duke University. Go Blue Devils!
Fran makes everything happen in our Operations department. As a small independent firm, we coordinate closely with many partners in the field including custodians, compliance supervisors, performance reporting systems, and technology providers. Fran is crucial to all that happens behind the scenes, and the primary point person for clients on all things electronic.
Fran joined the firm in 2001, having begun her financial career in 1991. Outside of the office, Fran enjoys traveling, photography, cooking and spending time with her family.
Terry has been an essential member of the AFMG team since 2002. She supports Operations, Clients and Advisors cheerfully and efficiently. She has over 20 years experience in the financial services industry. Terry is responsible for processing account openings, transfers, and money moves.
Previously, Terry worked as a Client Associate supporting five financial consultants and was then promoted to Executive Assistant to the Regional VP and was responsible for all aspects of branch services for eight offices including recruiting, HR and finance.
Terry has been married for more than 40 years. She is oldest of 11 children and she and her family spend most summer weekends at the New Jersey shore.
Kevin Gaines, MSFS, CFP®, RICP®
Chief Investment Officer
Based in our Berwyn, PA office, Kevin focuses on retirement lifestyle planning, working with clients on maximizing their resources in retirement. It is not enough to gather just a "big pot o' money" while you are working. Issues such as Social Security, Medicare, distribution options, housing, long term care funding as well as final wishes all need consideration in retirement.
Kevin has earned the Certified Financial Planner™ (CFP®)designation and the Retirement Income Certified Professional® (RICP®) to better help people understand their options in retirement and how best to use them for a rewarding experience. Kevin stays atop of the latest retirement regulations and strategies through his membership with Ed Slott Elite Advisors. A fee-based advisor, Kevin embraces the fiduciary standard and works with clients and fellow professionals to promote the responsibilities and the duties that advisors owe their clients.
In his role as Chief Investment Officer, Kevin not only works with clients but also other advisors to develop investment strategies to meet life's goals. While proper investment allocation is essential, it is a small piece of the planning process. It is more critical to understand a client's goals and objectives. His musings focus on the how & the why of planning.
Kevin began his financial career in 1994 with a large bank in Baltimore. He received his M.S. in Financial Services from St. Joseph's University in addition to his B.A. in Economics and History from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.
When not working with clients, Kevin enjoys golfing and, more importantly, spending time with his wife and their two mastiffs, Claude and Bingley.
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