During the Advanced PFP Conference in January, the AICPA honored two pioneers who have helped make personal financial planning (PFP) what it is today.
Steven Levey, CPA/PFS, CGMA, received the AICPA Special Recognition Award for 2014, given to individuals who have made outstanding contributions to a particular area of the profession. Ted Sarenski, CPA/PFS, CFP®, AEP, received the 2013 PFP Distinguished Service Award for his significant contributions to the advancement of PFP as a practice discipline.
AICPA President and CEO Barry Melancon, CPA, CGMA, said Levey has been selfless in his remarkable journey through the profession.
“Over the past 30 years, Steve has served as a thought leader and role model for the profession, specifically in personal financial planning,” said Melancon. “He has been a pioneer in building a successful personal financial planning business within a CPA firm and has truly been generous in sharing his knowledge and insights to everyone in the profession.”
After adding financial planning services to his firm in the early 1980s, Levey became one of the first CPAs to attain the Personal Financial Specialist (CPA/PFS) credential in 1986. Senior principal and a founding member of GHP Horwath, and senior principal of GHP Investment Advisors, Inc. in Denver, Colorado, Levey was recognized as one of the top 250 Best Financial Advisors in the United States by Worth magazine and was featured in Accounting Today as one of the “Names to Know in Financial Planning.”
Similar to Levey, Sarenski was recognized by the AICPA for not only having a strong body of work, but also a tremendous impact on his peers.
“Through tireless dedication and service, Ted has strengthened the CPA financial planning profession and elevated the knowledge of his peers across the country,” said Jeannette Koger, AICPA’s vice president of Member Specialization and Credentialing. "He exemplifies the best qualities of a CPA financial planner.”
Sarenski is president and chief executive officer of Blue Ocean Strategic Capital, LLC in Syracuse,
New York. Blue Ocean is a privately owned and operated firm with the sole focus of delivering customized service for individuals, retirement plans, nonprofit organizations, endowments and foundations. He is a frequent speaker at events, including webcasts and the annual Advanced PFP Conference, authors various publications for the PFP Section, and contributes to the Planner newsletter. He also serves as the chair of the AICPA’s Elder Planning task force, and as a member of the Financial Literacy Commission and Advanced Personal Financial Planning Conference Committee.