What Serving on My Local FPA Chapter’s Board of Directors Has Meant to Me

Next Generation Planner: February 2021


Haley Tolitsky, CFP®
Financial Planner, Cooke Capital

Fresh out of college two and a half years ago, it was a challenge for me to find an out-of-state position as a financial planner with a firm that shared my values. Luckily, I joined the Financial Planning Association (FPA) as a student member my senior year of college, which gave me additional exposure to the profession, aside from my classes and internship. Once I was close to graduation, I decided to reach out to local FPA chapters in different cities I was interested in living in to see if any financial planning firms were hiring. Fortunately, our current FPA of the Triangle president saw my email and connected me with my current firm. Thanks, Wayne!

When I moved from Michigan to North Carolina to start my career as a financial planner, I immediately knew I wanted to get involved with the local FPA chapter, which helped me land my new position. At that time, the FPA of the Triangle board of directors was interested in adding a new board member to help with marketing and social media, and I was selected for the role. I am now finishing up my second year as the first-ever communications director for our board and am looking forward to my third year with our amazing team!

More Than a Volunteer Position

Over the past two years, I’ve had the opportunity to connect with numerous local financial planners whom I wouldn’t have connected with otherwise without being involved with FPA. As a young planner who moved to a brand-new city without knowing anyone, this was extremely important to me. We have shared ideas, struggles and wins together—both in-person and virtually—and now, several of these planners are my close friends. I also have expanded my knowledge of the industry, brought innovative ideas back to my firm and have a trusted support network because of FPA.

It has been a rewarding experience to serve on the board and help make an impact in our profession. I, personally, have had the opportunity to create and grow our Facebook and LinkedIn pages and help produce marketing content to increase our member engagement. Being a board member doesn’t take as much time from my job as I expected, and it’s made me a stronger financial planner. It has been a fun experience that allows me to engage my creative side, aside from my daily financial planning work.

Opportunity to Give Back to My Community and Profession

I have witnessed our board accomplish so much over the past two years. In light of COVID-19, we successfully transitioned our monthly chapter meetings to a virtual format, keeping our members informed and engaged, and increasing our overall meeting attendance numbers. We hosted our 17th and 18th annual fall symposiums to provide professional development, collaboration and continuing education to our members.

Our pro-bono efforts have expanded to connect our members to volunteering opportunities with numerous organizations in our community. Our FPA NexGen group has consistently met bimonthly for our students and members in the first eight years in their career to provide a supportive group to ask questions and share ideas. We also have added a diversity and inclusion director to better reach underrepresented groups and encourage them to get involved in the financial planning profession.

I am proud of the impactful work we have done to elevate our profession, community and member experience, and I am excited to see the advancements we’ll continue to make throughout the upcoming years.

Interested in Getting Involved?

Along with all of FPA national’s great opportunities and events, do not hesitate to reach out to your local chapter! You can find your local chapter and contact information at www.financialplanningassociation.org/connect/find-your-chapter. I live two hours away from my chapter, but am extremely involved in our events and able to serve on the board by meeting virtually, so don’t let distance stop you from participating. We have even expanded our FPA presence in my local community.

If you are unable to commit to a leadership position at this time, still get involved in your chapter’s events—whether it’s educational meetings, networking events or volunteering sessions. You will have the opportunity to connect with a variety of diverse planners and will leave with new viewpoints and strong connections. Your community is waiting for you!

Haley Tolitsky, CFP® is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ at Cooke Capital, a hybrid wealth management firm providing highly personalized financial planning and investment management services. She serves on the board of directors as the communication director and symposium committee member for FPA of the Triangle, based in Raleigh, N.C.

Financial advisory services offered through Acorn Financial Services, Inc. (AFAS), a Registered Investment Adviser. Securities offered through The Strategic Financial Alliance, Inc. (SFA), a registered Broker/Dealer. Charles Cooke and Haley Tolitsky are Registered Representatives of SFA and Investment Advisor Representatives with AFAS. Cooke Capital is otherwise unaffiliated with AFAS and SFA. Supervising office (703) 293-3100

Career stage
Learning / Aspiring