Boston-Area Wells Fargo Manager Signs with Raymond James Affiliate
After 25 years, a former complex manager for Wells Fargo Advisors in Waltham, Mass., made his first voluntary career move on Monday.
James I. Connors, who ran nine offices in the Boston suburbs for Well’s private client group, joined Steward Partners, a New York-based advisory firm affiliated with Raymond James Financial, to recruit in New England, he said in an interview shortly after his resignation.
Connors, 57, will be the New England division president and said he was looking for an opportunity to own equity and focus more on coaching and recruiting as he found his role increasingly involved back office or compliance-related tasks.
“Sometimes you get caught in the minutiae of the paperwork,” he said. “A strong attribute of the new firm is that goes away, and it’s more about coaching and recruiting and why you got into this role in the first place.”
Connors had been a market manager, a role in between a complex manager and regional manager, in downtown Boston before he was moved to the complex manager role in June as part of a management shuffle, he said.
In his new role, Connors will oversee three existing Steward offices, including one in Andover, Mass., and two in New Hampshire. Steward has around $1.4 billion in advisory assets and another $2 billion in brokerage assets, according to its chief executive, James Gold, who said he has known Connors for around 10 years.
Connors began his brokerage career as a manager at Prudential-Bache Securities in 1991 in New York and stayed with the firm through subsequent mergers until it became part of Wells Fargo.
“I guess you could call me a survivor to go through all those reorgs and changes and still have a position and move up,” said Connors.
Connors said the $185 million settlement Wells Fargo reached with regulators over cross-selling in its consumer bank had nothing to do with the timing of his move.
“It’s not an easy thing to deal with but they do separate the banking channel from our channel,” he said. “And in the end, clients do business with the advisor.”
A spokeswoman for Wells Fargo did not immediately return a request for comment.