Chad Carlson CFP®, CFA

Owner and Wealth Manager    


What inspired you to choose wealth management as a career?

My dad worked for an insurance company from graduation until retirement. If you asked him what he would change if he did it all over again, he would choose to be a wealth manager.  This came across in the way I grew up.  Financial discussions were part of many decisions.  Instead of telling me to save/invest, he provided a $200 gift one year to pick a stock, any stock, and track it with him.  This type of approach really ingrained in me how much financial decisions interact with nearly all elements of life.

What do you enjoy most about your role at BDF?

I truly love being able to go from 30,000 feet up all the way down to the ground.  With my Investment Committee role, we may have two-hour debates about some very detailed parts of the portfolio.  We know the ins and the outs of every nook and cranny of our recommendations.  But, in talking with clients, the communication changes from what is important to the IC, to what is truly important for them to know and understand in order to do our best in helping them achieve financial success.

What do your clients appreciate most about you?

I think our clients appreciate my ability to keep the big picture in mind.  With finances, there are so many details that you can get lost in.  What I hope to do is be able to bring people back to truly focus on the big picture and how this all ties together.

What is the one thing you wish every person knew when making financial decisions?

I wish every person knew, and recognized, that financial decisions are rarely made in a vacuum.  There is either a domino effect where one decision impacts another, or other people making the decision at the exact same time that changes the circumstances.  All these gets to the need to back up, think about your whole financial picture, and assess from there.

What defines your own personal “full life”?

My full life starts and ends with my family.  My goal, along with my incredible wife, is to raise a family that is additive to those around them.  We want to create a family that brings about good in our house, with our families, with our friends, and in our community. My full life is making sure every moment spent with them is building them up to be a better and better person tomorrow, and recognizing that today is fleeting, so enjoy the moments, latch onto the memories, and smile.