Mark Balasa CPA, CFP®
What inspired you to choose wealth management as a career?
When I began in the 1980’s, I don’t think there was a career path in wealth management. At the time, I didn’t realize that was a problem. I loved the idea of helping someone who didn’t know where to get an objective answer make a better decision. However, that simple task was complicated by the conflicts of interest that are almost everywhere you turn in this industry. The biggest thrill I get is when someone says, “ I didn’t know that” or “no one ever told me that”.
What do you enjoy most about being a part of the BDF team?
The ability to leverage the experts in our firm and our broad network outside of our firm. Being able to get an answer to a problem from someone I can trust, a subject matter expert, helps us better serve our clients.
What defines your own personal “full life”?
It has nothing to do with finances. A strong faith, a loving family, good health, and a job you love.
What’s the most influential book you’ve read and why?
The Diary of Sister Faustina. It helped me prioritize what is really important in life.
What was the inspiration behind founding BDF?
For me, it was born out of trying to solve a problem. When I got out of college and started working, my parents told me I should get life insurance. That sounded simple enough, but it led to a world of confusing terms, complex contracts, and impossible comparisons between insurance companies. I had no idea how to figure out how much I needed and, most importantly, I was leery of the insurance agents’ advice given. I felt that because my family, friends and I were all at a loss as to how to figure this out, there had to be a need that was not being filled. I never dreamed that simple task would lead to what has happened over the past 30 years and the amazing group of people we have brought together to essentially pursue the same task but in a much larger way.