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Women's Choice Award
The Women’s Choice Award® Financial Advisor Program by WomenCertified Inc. is a recognition program for advisors who provide quality service and strong commitment to their female clients. Advisors who qualify for the Award are evaluated using 17 objective criteria: 1) Clientele are at least one-third women or male-female couples; 2) Accepting new clients; 3) Actively employed as a licensed or credentialed professional in financial services for a minimum of three years; 4) Credentials include an IAR (Investment Advisory Representative), a FINRA-registered advisor/broker, an RIA (Registered Investment Advisor), a CPA (Certified Public Accountant), CFP® (Certified Financial Planner), PFS (Personal Financial Specialist), or a licensed attorney practicing in financial services; 5) Must be in compliance with regulatory requirements of the SEC, state securities regulators in states where they do business, and self-regulatory bodies; 6) Must be in good standing with the standards of the firm with which they are affiliated; 7) Must have a favorable regulatory and complaint history and who sign an affidavit to that effect*; 8) Must not have been subject to a regulatory action that resulted in their license being suspended or revoked, or payment of a fine; 9) Must not have been convicted of a felony; 10) Must not have filed for personal bankruptcy in the past ten years; 11) Assets under management; 12) Number of clients (households) served by the advisor; 13) The advisor’s client retention rate over a three-year period; 14) How many firms the advisor has been associated with in the past ten years; 15) The advisor’s education and professional designations; 16) Educational programs and events provided for clients; and 17) The advisor’s record of community service. In addition to the criteria and to augment the evaluation process, the advisor is required to submit letters of validation from senior representatives at their respective firm or broker dealer and/or they may have completed a survey of the advisor’s clients to obtain client feedback regarding service and practices. The first 10 criteria is required, while the last 7 are considered in determining qualification. *A favorable regulatory and complaint history is defined by WomenCertified, Inc as no more than three customer complaints filed against them with any regulatory authority, no individual contributions to a financial settlement regarding a filed customer complaint, and no suspension or revocation of license as the result of a regulatory action. The award may not be representative of any one client’s experience. The award is not indicative of the advisor’s future performance. Financial advisors do not pay a fee to be considered or placed on the final list of Women’s Choice Financial Advisor Award®, though they may have paid a basic program fee to cover the cost of comprehensive review and client survey.