Leadership and Corporate Governance
They’re the people behind Cetera, but you won’t find them behind closed doors. Meet the team ready to unlock your growth potential and help you bring greater well-being to your clients.
Cetera Financial Group Leadership
Financial services was my first real job, and I fell in love with the profession. Every day is an opportunity to impact people’s lives for the better, and enable our financial professionals do well by doing good.
Adam Antoniades is chief executive officer of Cetera Financial Group and a member of its board of directors. As CEO, Adam is responsible for running all facets of the business, driving growth for the organization and its financial professionals.
Adam leads Cetera in its mission to advance the profession of financial guidance through the delivery of an Advice-Centric Experience®. In support of this mission, he drives innovative programs and technologies that enable financial professionals to achieve greater financial well-being for their clients at each life stage.
Adam serves as immediate past chair on the board of the Financial Services Institute (FSI) and is on the organization’s executive committee. He was also recently named a board member of Invest in Others, a charitable foundation that recognizes philanthropic contributions made by individual financial professionals and firms.
Prior to his current role, Adam was president of Cetera from 2014 to 2019. Previously, he co-founded First Allied Securities, (now a part of Cetera) in 1994 and served as its president and CEO for the better part of two decades, driving the firm’s growth strategy organically and through acquisitions. He has also held senior management positions at major financial institutions world-wide, including Berkeley Administration Inc., and A. J. Bekhor and Company.
A native of London, England, Adam resides in San Diego, CA, with his wife, Lisa, and their two children.
I wanted a career where I could help others pursue greater financial success. Here, I get to do that twice over, helping financial professionals as they turn plans into realities for their clients.
Jeff Buchheister is chief financial officer of Cetera Financial Group, where he serves as a member of Cetera’s executive leadership team. As CFO, he supports the company's growth strategy and vision by developing robust, best-in-class finance functions at the Cetera network level. With more than 22 years of financial services industry experience, Jeff brings to Cetera a broad set of leadership, management, and technical capabilities in the areas of finance, accounting, and operations.
Prior to Cetera, Jeff most recently served as executive vice president and chief accounting officer for LPL Financial, where he provided strategic leadership and oversight for the corporate accounting, tax, and external reporting functions. Prior to that position, during his 13 years at LPL Financial, he held a series of leadership roles at the corporate and business unit levels. He also served as a board member and audit committee chairman for the Private Trust Company, a subsidiary of LPL Financial.
Before joining LPL, Jeff was a senior manager at Deloitte, where he managed audit and audit-related consulting engagements for financial services companies, including E*Trade, American Funds, Pacific Life and TCW.
Jeff received a bachelor’s degree in business economics from the University of California, Riverside. He also successfully completed the leadership development program at Harvard Business School. In 2017, he was a finalist for the LA Business Journal’s CFO of the Year Award. He is a licensed CPA and holds Series 7, 24, 27, and 63 securities registrations.
I am so proud to be at a firm that values and celebrates our diversity and helps to serve all of our communities.
Lisa Gok is the chief legal officer at Cetera Financial Group, where she serves as executive legal advisor to Cetera, and its board of directors. In this role, Lisa is responsible for ensuring a holistic legal view for Cetera, ensuring best practices while operating as a strong strategic partner for Cetera on a broad range of legal, operational and corporate activities. She leads a team of lawyers and other legal professionals who provide counsel on a wide variety of general corporate matters and manage litigation and regulatory enforcement for the firms.
Prior to joining Cetera in 2012, Lisa held a variety of leadership positions both in and outside of financial services. She spent time with the Justice Department and 15 years with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, at both headquarters in Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles, California. Lisa also served as an assistant United States attorney in the Criminal Division of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the District of Columbia where Lisa tried more than 20 jury trials and conducted more than 1,000 hearings. Additionally, she served as chief compliance officer at Transamerica Financial Advisors, a broker-dealer and registered investment advisor and was part of the legal team that handled the IPO for Green Dot Corporation [NYSE:GDOT] a financial technology firm and bank holding company.
Lisa is a graduate of Princeton University’s School of Public and International Affairs and earned her J.D. from Columbia University School of Law School. She is admitted to practice law in Washington D.C. and California.
The constant change is what keeps me interested in financial services and Cetera. There is always a new challenge or opportunity coming down the road.
Tom Gooley is a financial services industry veteran with more than 25 years of experience in managing large, complex organizations through transformational change. As chief operating officer of Cetera, Tom brings together technology, trading, services and operations to deliver a digital experience that drives growth for its network of financial professionals. He creates scale and operating leverage for the organization, while maintaining frictionless and efficient service for financial professionals.
Prior to Cetera, Tom’s most recent role was managing director of service, trading and operations at LPL Financial. Previously, he was senior managing director and chief risk officer for the retirement and individual financial services division at TIAA-CREF. He also worked as managing director and head of operations for the global wealth and asset management divisions of Morgan Stanley where he also co-led the project to convert assets from Smith Barney to the Morgan Stanley platform as part of their merger. Earlier in his career, Tom led equities and futures operations for Bank of America Securities after spending 12 years with Goldman Sachs in a variety of leadership roles in Equities Operations.
He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Political Economies of Industrial Societies from the University of California at Berkeley and a Master of Business Administration from The Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He is a graduate and Trustee of the Securities Industry Institute (SIFMA) Wharton Program, a member of the AIESEC United States Board of Directors and Chair of the Finance Sub Committee and is also an Advisor to the University of California, Berkeley Political Economies department. He holds his FINRA Series 7 and 27 securities registrations.
I get to do what I love every day – advancing our purpose and our people. We’re a catalyst for changing the world through financial inclusion.
Elissa Mahendra is chief talent and inclusion officer for Cetera Financial Group. She serves as a trusted partner to the CEO, CHRO and Council Members to design Cetera’s strategy, purpose-driven plan, and aspirations in the multiple facets of talent management and diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging.
She and her team work closely with a network of stakeholders to execute an integrated and sustainable plan to elevate Cetera’s impact and drive results focused on creating talent pathways, access to financial education, and economic empowerment.
Prior to her current role, Elissa served as head of learning, talent and culture, senior HR business partner, and director of learning and development at Cetera. Before joining Cetera, Elissa was with Northern Trust for 10 years as a vice president of human resources and held roles across recruiting, compensation, diversity and inclusion, learning, change management and organizational development.
In addition to her portfolio of corporate experiences, Elissa spent five years as an adjunct professor of HR with Keller Graduate School and DeVry University and served on non-profit advisory boards.
As a first-generation college graduate and professional, Elissa is a self-proclaimed lifetime learner and has earned her MBA in organizational development, a bachelor’s degree with a dual concentration in finance and management and holds several HR certifications.
Elissa is passionate about cultivating employee experiences and cultures that have lasting impact. Her work and cultural experiences span multiple countries and continents, having worked in the United States, the United Kingdom, and India. Elissa enjoys travel and learning about new cultures, spending time with her family, and giving back to the community.
We are not a one-size-fits-all firm when it comes to how advisors affiliate, which makes Cetera the best place to work as it allows us to find new ways to get things done.
Joe Neary is chief risk officer for Cetera Financial Group. In this role, Joe is responsible for ensuring a holistic risk picture across the firms in the Cetera Financial Group network. He leads a team of compliance and risk management professionals who provide advice and guidance regarding regulatory matters and other risk issues impacting the firms and its registered broker-dealers and investment advisory firms.
Prior to joining Cetera, Joe was the CCO of Park Avenue Securities, the Investment Advisory CCO and the Royal Alliance CCO for AIG Advisor Group. He has also been a compliance officer for AIG SunAmerica Asset Management and served as the CCO for AIG Capital Services, the principal underwriter for SunAmerica Products. Joe started his career in financial services in 1997 as a compliance officer and counsel at Prudential Financial and Marsh & McLennan, where his responsibilities included focusing on the oversight of wholesaling broker-dealer activities, product manufacturing, capital raising, and retirement services. Joe also has experience managing the risk oversight with regards to the distribution of direct investments and investment banking.
Joe earned his L.L.M. in international business transactions from McGeorge School of Law and his J.D. from Widener University Law School. He holds 7, 24, 53 and 66 securities registrations. He is licensed to practice law in New York and New Jersey.
Every time I hear our financial professionals talk about the life events they attend of their clients—weddings, baptisms, retirements—it makes me so proud of the work they do.
Tom Taylor currently serves as the chief of sales and growth officer for Cetera Financial Group and CEO for Cetera Advisor Networks focusing on all aspects of the business.
Prior to these roles, he served as both president and chief operating officer of Cetera Advisor Networks where he leveraged his experience in sales, operations, compliance and marketing to lead the firm’s initiatives in technology and operations. He was also responsible for leading the FID Operations department, Electronic Order Entry department and Resource Center to support and serve financial professionals and independent offices nationwide.
Tom has over 30 years’ experience in the financial services industry. Previously, he spent five years as a top-producing broker at Liberty Securities Corp./IFMG before being promoted to sales manager. He also ran an investment program and managed 10 brokers for a $4 billion financial institution in southern California.
He joined Financial Network in 1997 and has been instrumental in developing many of the new operational, technological and sales initiatives for the company. Previous assignments include due diligence coordinator, vice president of sales and training, vice president of the Financial Institutions Division, and chief administrative officer before taking the role of chief operating officer.
Tom received a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration, with an emphasis in finance and investments, from California State University, Long Beach. He is also a Certified Financial Planner® (CFP®).
As Chief Marketing and Communications Officer of Cetera, Michael Zuna is responsible for all marketing and business development for Cetera Financial Group, including all branding, internal and external communications, demand generation, public relations, advertising and event marketing. He also oversees other key communications initiatives geared at driving brand leadership for Cetera that directly support the company's broader vision of an Advice-Centric Experience™ model for the industry's future. Additionally, he will partner closely with the entire Cetera leadership team to help revolutionize the company's business development function, by spearheading a closer integration of marketing, performance marketing and advisor recruiting efforts. In this role, he will directly oversee the traditional channel recruiting function.
Prior to joining Cetera, Michael served as senior vice president, chief marketing & digital officer of Petco Animal Supplies, where he had oversight of all marketing, e-commerce and brand-building activities for the company. Before joining Petco, he served as senior vice president and chief marketing officer of Aflac, Inc., where he was responsible for brand-building activities across a comprehensive spectrum of marketing and advertising channels, including all marketing of the 'Aflac Duck.' Michael was also responsible for the creation of Aflac's trailblazing One Day Paysm initiative. He has more than fifteen years of financial services marketing experience on behalf of leading companies such as ING Direct, Ameriprise Financial, and USAA.
Michael graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science from the United States Naval Academy. He has earned numerous professional recognitions in his career, including being named multiple times to the "Top 50 Most Influential CMO's" list by Forbes magazine.
I am passionate about financial services, but it’s the people aspect that I love the most. What a privilege to work with financial advisors as they help families fulfill their dreams every day!
Brett Harrison serves as the president and CEO of Cetera Advisors, building on his 30 years of experience in the financial services industry, 25 of them at Cetera. He brings to the role a strong financial management background and a sincere desire to provide advisors with unprecedented levels of service and growth opportunities.
His responsibilities with Cetera have covered all aspects of the firm’s engagement with its financial professionals. Leveraging his ability to build excellent field relationships, Brett has led growth, sales, and service initiatives that have resulted in organic growth for advisors, retention of long-tenured advisors, acquisition of new advisors, and integrations resulting in efficiencies and scale.
Brett graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science from Berry College in Rome, Georgia, and successfully completed the Program for Management Development at Harvard Business School. He has been an active member on various FSI and SIFMA committees, and has a background as a certified public accountant. Brett holds Series 7, 24, and 27 securities registrations.
Cetera Financial Specialists
Cetera Financial Specialists
I started investing in college and was fascinated with it. But once I was able to help other people pursue their dreams, I knew I found my profession.
Ron Krueger is president of Cetera Financial Specialists, a broker-dealer within Cetera Financial Group. He and his team are responsible for leading the firm's financial and tax professionals to build great businesses and achieve growth goals through best-in class service, alignment with leading technology and specialty-focused resources within Cetera.
For over 20 years, Ron has been passionate about educating, servicing, and making business easy to do for financial professionals and creating a "red carpet" client experience with each interaction. Creating this experience drives the team's passion to provide superior support and service that's hands-on and high touch in an enviroment that promotes a family culture and direct access to senior leaders.
Prior to his current role, Ron has held a variety of leadership and business development positions within Cetera and its predecessor companies. Before joining Cetera, his experience included working as an investment professoinal at Prudential Securities. He achieved both his Certified Financial Planner® and Chartered Financial Analyst® designations in 2002.
Ron earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Texas in Austin. He is an active member of the CFA Institute and The Financial Planning Association and is a former board member of the Tampa Bay Financial Analyst Society. He is licensed as a financial professional with Cetera Financial Specialists and holds Series 7, 24, 63 and 65 securities registrations. He also holds an insurance license.
He resides in Tampa with his wife Minerva, two daughters, and adopted pets. They enjoy sports, travel, and outdoor activities.
Cetera Investment Services
Cetera Investment Services
After more than 30 years at Cetera, I am still excited to sit alongside our partner institutions and branches and discuss the unique ways we can help build on their vision to serve local communities.
LeAnn Rummel joined Cetera Investment Services in 1992 and serves as president and CEO, where she focuses on all aspects of the business. Additionally, she leads the firm’s executive committee and acts as president of Cetera’s insurance agencies.
LeAnn currently serves as a Bank Insurance Securities Association (BISA) board member. In 2014, she was inducted into BISA’s Circle of Excellence, which honors outstanding professionals in the industry. She is the executive sponsor for the CFG advisor-led Diversity & Inclusion Council.
Prior to Cetera, she served on PrimeVest’s executive committee and within the ING Advisors Network marketing team as vice president - financial institution channel and product marketing. Before that, she served as vice president of product sales and marketing for PrimeVest, managing the firm’s creative services team as well as the cash management, life insurance, retirement planning, financial planning and investment advisory departments.
LeAnn’s tenure in the financial services industry spans more than 30 years. She is qualified as a general securities representative (Series 7), as a general securities principal (Series 24) and as a uniform securities agent (Series 63). She also possesses her insurance licenses. LeAnn received a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with a marketing emphasis from Iowa State University.
Cetera Advisor Networks
Cetera Advisor Networks
Cetera is the most dynamic and nimble organization I’ve ever had the pleasure of working at during my career, which makes it an incredibly special place in our profession.
Tim Stinson is president of Cetera Advisor Networks. In this role, he is responsible for all aspects of the Cetera Advisor Networks community, including growth, technology, sales support and operations. He also leads the Cetera Advisor Networks Executive Management Committee.
Tim has 30 years of experience in the financial services industry rooted in customer engagement, consulting, product and distribution. Previously, he was head of Wealth Management and Recruiting Sales and the executive leader responsible for the overall strategy and growth of wealth management and business development across Cetera Financial Group. In this role, he focused on igniting asset growth and leading teams dedicated to the delivery of an Advice-Centric Experience® designed to guide more clients to reaching financial well-being throughout all stages of life.
Prior to joining Cetera, Tim was senior vice president of business development in the Southwestern U.S. for the institutional platform at Northern Trust. Before Northern Trust, he a was senior vice president at Fidelity Investments, where he was responsible for managing the Southwestern Institutional Wealth Services organization, working with independent RIAs. He also served in senior leadership roles at firms such as Fortigent and SEI.
Tim serves on the Financial Services Institute’s board of directors and is a founding member of Cetera’s Diversity, Equity, Inclusion and Belonging Council. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in marketing from Saint Joseph’s University and has been a member of the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton Business School Executive Management Program, where he studied new leadership paradigms. He holds the Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF) designation and Series 7 and 24 securities registrations.
Board of Directors
Ben Brigeman serves as chairman of the Cetera board and as a member of Genstar Capital's Strategic Advisory Board, and advises the firm in the financial services sector. He served as Cetera’s interim CEO from March 2019 to December 2019.
Prior to Cetera, Ben was executive vice president for Charles Schwab & Co., Inc., where he served as the head of the individual investor (retail) business of Schwab responsible for its worldwide branch network, call centers, new client operations, regulatory compliance, product development, project management and wealth services. He was a key member of Schwab’s executive committee setting strategy for the company. Prior to joining Schwab in 1996, Ben was a senior vice president at Key Bank, managing Key’s Retirement Services division.
Ben is a member of the board of directors for Ascensus, Apex Group, and Institutional Shareholder Services (“ISS”). He and his wife Vicki are lifelong residents in the Cleveland, Ohio, area.
He holds both a BS and an MBA from the University of Akron.
Lori Hardwick brings more than 30 years of experience of working in the financial industry as a prominent voice and is known for her intense passion for continuous improvement in the financial advisory industry. Lori has consulting and operating expertise in investment, technology, distribution, and advisory solutions and is a regular speaker at industry events and frequently featured on leadership and fintech podcasts.
Lori was appointed to Genstar Capital’s Strategic Advisory Board in 2020 and at the same time, appointed as a board director for one of their portfolio companies in the financial services sector; Cetera Financial Group and in October 2020, she was appointed to the Orion/Brinker board of directors. In 2019, Lori was appointed to an independent board seat at Vestwell, LLC for which she currently serves as Chairman. Lori also served as a board director for Riskalyze, beginning in 2018 and served as Chairman of that firm from 2019 to mid-2021 when the company was acquired by Hg Partners, a P/E company based in London.
In 2017, Lori created and co-founded a new fintech company, Advisor Innovation Labs (AI Labs). At AI Labs, she served on the board of directors, and was focused on building sophisticated and intuitive ‘systems of engagement’ between advisors and their clients with a digital interface. AI Labs underwent a successful acquisition in March 2020.
Prior to founding AI Labs, Lori served as Chief Operating Officer for Pershing, a BNY Mellon company, sharing leadership responsibility with the CEO for managing the Pershing family of companies. Lori served as a member of Pershing’s Executive Committee and BNY Mellon’s Senior Leadership Team.
Previously, Lori was Co-Founder and Group President of Advisory Services for Envestnet, overseeing all of its enterprise relationship management, institutional advisory sales, strategic partnerships and practice management programs. She had been with Envestnet since its founding in 2000 and served in a variety of roles managing its enterprise, sales, services, advisor orientation and onboarding divisions during her 16-year tenure at the firm. She helped Envestnet prepare and launch a successful IPO in July 2010 (NYSE: ENV).
Most recently, Lori was named as one of the “22 People who will Transform Wealth Management in 2022” by Financial-Planning.com and also recognized as one of the 2020 Top Women of Wealth Tech by ThinkAdvisor. She was also profiled as a “Winner in Wealthtech” in 2018 by Wealth Management Today. In 2017, Lori was named to the “Women to Watch” list by InvestmentNews and also, in 2016, was on Investment Advisor’s list of “The 25 Most Influential People in the Financial Industry”. Lori was also named one of the “50 Most Influential Women in Private Wealth” by Private Asset Management magazine in 2015.
She also serves her community by working on Ben Franklin’s Executive Review Committee where she helps advise Ben Franklin review and assess viability of local start-up firms for investment, with an emphasis on those that will create jobs and economic growth for the City of Philadelphia.
Lori graduated from The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Arts. She is also a graduate of the University of Chicago Booth Advanced Management Executive Program, an elite category of year-long masters of business educational programs designed for senior executives.
- University of Chicago Booth, Executive MBA Program
- The Ohio State University, BA
Gary Michel is a member of Genstar’s Strategic Advisory Board and is working with portfolio companies to improve financial leadership and operational performance.
Prior to joining the Strategic Advisory Board, Michel was an operating partner at Providence Equity Partners. He was previously the chief financial officer of TravelClick, a former Genstar Portfolio Company. He oversaw the global financial and legal operations, and served as a key member of the senior leadership team in developing growth strategies and leading the exit process. Before joining TravelClick, Gary was CFO of Register.com, a provider of web services to small and medium-sized businesses. Register.com was sold to Web.com and Gary left after leading the successful integration of the two companies.
Gary’s extensive financial background includes 10 years at Dun and Bradstreet (D&B), where he specialized in growth strategies and global business integration. At D&B he was both the International and Americas chief financial officer, focusing on improving performance and profitability. He also served as head of corporate strategy and M&A. His career also includes leadership roles with The McGraw-Hill Companies and PricewaterhouseCoopers.
He is actively involved with the University of Delaware as part of the Executive Mentors Scholars Program, The Lerner College Leadership Council and the University’s Venture Development Center.
- University of Delaware, Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics, BS, Accounting
Sid Ramakrishnan joined Genstar Capital in 2012 and is currently a director of the firm responsible for evaluating and executing investments across various sectors. Previously, he was chief of staff to the CEO at AssetMark (a former Genstar portfolio company) and led corporate strategy for the company. Sid began his career in the investment banking division at Morgan Stanley.
- University of Southern California, BS, Business Administration
Tony Salewski is a managing director with Genstar Capital, helping to identify, evaluate and execute acquisition and investment opportunities.
Prior to joining Genstar Capital in 2007, Tony was the chief of staff at Barclays Global Investors (BGI), where he executed strategic initiatives for the executive committee. Prior to BGI, he was an associate at Hellman & Friedman LLC, a private equity investment firm in San Francisco. He began his career in the investment banking division of Morgan Stanley in New York.
- Harvard Business School, MBA, with distinction
- Harvard College, with honors
Hal Strong is responsible for expanding Genstar’s financial services practice, in particular in the areas of asset management, wealth management and financial technology. He serves as a director of Altegris, Apex Group, Institutional Shareholder Services (ISS), Mercer Advisors, and Strategic Insight. He is a former director of AssetMark.
Prior to joining Genstar, Hal was most recently vice chairman of Russell Investments, where he helped build Russell into a global investment company with $250 billion in assets under management serving individual, institutional and advisor clients in more than 40 countries. During his 18-year career at Russell, he also served as Russell’s chief operating officer, chief financial officer, head of alternative investments and head of investment banking, having founded the latter two businesses at Russell.
Hal has nearly 30 years of experience in the asset management and investment banking industries, beginning his career in the investment banking division of Salomon Brothers in New York.
He is an active member of the theatre community as a trustee and member of the executive committee of Seattle Repertory Theatre.
- University of Washington, MBA
- UC Berkeley, German
Vamsi Yadlapati brings more than two decades of leadership experience in the financial industry and is known for his M&A and strategic expertise. As a member of Cetera’s board of directors, he helps guide the firm’s acquisition-related growth strategy as the industry continues to undergo waves of consolidation.
Vamsi most recently was co-head of M&A at Focus Financial Partners. As part of the executive team at Focus, he helped build one of the most successful consolidations in the wealth industry. His role included a range of responsibilities including strategy, international expansion and consulting to the acquired wealth firms.
Vamsi continues to be active in the wealth management space and currently sits on several boards in addition to Cetera including SageView Advisory Group, Pathstone Family Office and Adviser Investments. He is also a consultant to various private equity firms, working on many of the largest transactions in the wealth space over the past year.
Prior to his experience in wealth management, Vamsi worked in private equity at Summit Partners and prior to that he was an investment banker at Salomon Smith Barney. Vamsi has been recognized by M&A Advisor Magazine with the 40 Under 40 Award.
His primary passion is his full-time role as a father today which includes not only being active in raising his children, but also taking part in activities with them, including skiing, swimming, karate, cub scouts, and others. He is also an avid study of human behavior and influence in his free time.
- Northwestern University, MBA
- University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, BS, Business Administration