With Gary Furukawa, Founder, Senior Partner and Erik Morgan, President, Senior Partner at Freestone Capital
What does it take to thrive in the ultra-competitive wealth management world? Gary Furukawa and Erik Morgan of Freestone Capital share how their success is driven by creating unique solutions around serving clients, training their team, building the business, and managing investments.
NOTE: The views and opinions expressed by the guests on this podcast are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Diamond Consultants. Neither Diamond Consultants nor the guests on this podcast are compensated in any way for their participation.
About this episode…
We often speak about the competitive landscape as a positive providing maximum choice and optionality for advisors. But that also means maximum competition—and a much bigger stable of choice for clients.
For those who serve high net worth clients in particular, their success is often driven by innovation: thinking well outside the box to create unique solutions around how they serve clients, train their teams, build their businesses, and even manage investments.
Yet, the ability to think – and act – with this level of freedom isn’t necessarily possible for those building their businesses in the wirehouses.
For Gary Furukawa, the idea that clients could – and should – be first above all else came to him while at Smith Barney, yet it was an ethos not possible to realize within the construct of the brokerage world.
So in 1999, Gary launched Freestone Capital, a self-financed firm he built from the ground up (a much more complicated endeavor than he imagined). In 2000, Erik Morgan (from the Private Client Services group at Arthur Anderson) joined as President to lead the firm’s growth initiative.
And it proved to be a dynamic combination that propelled Freestone from $250 million in assets under management to over $9 billion today.
In this episode with Louis Diamond, you’ll learn:
- Freestone’s innovative solutions around client service.
- Why they focused on organic growth first before hiring experienced advisors.
- Details about their unique, scalable training program for recent college grads.
- Their novel approach to investing and why they opt to serve as a direct private equity investor.
And it’s the latter that you’ll find most interesting, as their roster of investments includes golf courses, real e
state, and even barrels of bourbon. But you’ll have to tune in to learn more about that!
The most successful advisors and firms recognize that growth and client service go hand-in-hand—so listen to this dynamic episode to learn how this team found innovative ways to marry the two.
Want to learn more about where, why, and how advisors like you are moving? Click to contact us or call 908-879-1002.
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Founder & Senior Partner
Gary founded Freestone in 1999 and brings over four decades of investment, financial advice, and planning experience to Freestone. He serves as Chief Investment Officer for Freestone, and serves as a co-portfolio manager of Freestone’s Real Estate funds. He serves on the boards of Freestone Capital Management and Cambio Communities. Prior to founding Freestone, Gary worked for 17 years at EF Hutton and Salomon Smith Barney as a Senior Vice President. Prior to Salomon Smith Barney, Gary worked as a Certified Public Accountant in the Tax Department with Deloitte & Touche in Seattle.
Gary is a Phi Beta Kappa and earned a BA magna cum laude in Business Administration from the University of Washington.
In his spare time, Gary enjoys cycling, skiing, yoga, pickleball and fly fishing. He also enjoys traveling and reading a good book.
Gary is a frequent lecturer at the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business for upper level Finance / Investment courses for both undergraduates and MBA students and received the 2015 Distinguished Leadership Award from the Foster School of Business. In 2018, Gary was the keynote speaker for the UW Foster School of Business graduation ceremony held at Alaska Airlines Arena in Seattle, WA.
President & Senior Partner
For over twenty-five years, Erik has provided investment and financial advice to some of the Northwest’s most successful entrepreneurs and corporate executives. At Freestone, he serves on the investment committee and is a member of the firm’s Board of Directors. Erik came to Freestone from Arthur Andersen where he worked as a Senior Manager in the Private Client Services (PCS) group. At Andersen, he was responsible for the launch and growth of the firm’s Investment Advisory
Services practice in Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Northern California. In that capacity Erik worked with affluent clients to build and implement diversified investment portfolios and coordinated wealth management plans. Prior to his time at Arthur Andersen, he was with The Rainier Group in Seattle where he focused on investment management consulting and estate planning.
Erik earned a BA in Business Administration from Washington State University.
Erik has been recognized by Barron’s as the top Financial Advisor in Washington State from 2013 to 2015 and from 2017 to 2022. Barron’s also ranked Erik as one of the top 100 Independent Financial Advisors in the country from 2010-2023.
Outside of work, Erik has been involved in the Young Presidents Organization in addition to serving as Trustee for Hampden Sydney College. In his free time you can find Erik cheering from the sidelines for his sons, working on his (improving) golf game or looking for fresh snow in the mountains.