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Elijah Souza, CFP®

Partner

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BIO

When financial professionals use the term "taking a haircut", they're usually referring to the pay reduction they inevitably suffer when starting their careers. But Elijah Souza literally lopped off his locks to launch his career as an Investment Advisor. Most people size up a career based on how much it allows them to make or take. Elijah showed his vocational commitment to how much he was willing to give. He donated his departed thirteen inches of hair to Locks of Love, a non-profit organization that crafts wigs for children undergoing chemotherapy.

It was an auspicious beginning that perfectly represented the dedication, care, and service to others that underlies Elijah's advisory practice.

Elijah is not your grandpa's investment advisor. He hails from the serene shores of Hawaii and his Pilipino and Portuguese family heritage reflects the diversity of Gerber Kawasaki's corps of advisors. While Elijah enjoyed the relaxed pace of island living, he was also a fiercely competitive athlete, he paddled ancient Hawaiian canoes, played center field in baseball and was a defensive back in football.

Elijah saw how hard his parents worked, but never thought they were fairly rewarded for their labors. His dad worked in public transportation and his mom was a secretary for the same insurance company for over thirty years. But there was one experience that profoundly altered his world view. "I remember watching people come to Hawaii from all over the world and buy their dream beach homes in Hawaii. I always wondered how they were able to do that. And I thought, ‘I want to learn how to do this and help others have access to resources that will allow them to achieve their dreams as well.'" However, fulfilling his ambitions meant giving up what was comfortable and familiar. It required moving away from family and friends to pursue a potentially prosperous but potentially risky career path. It took moving to a very different sort of island to fully open his eyes to bigger things ahead.

As part of a foreign study program at Loyola Marymount University, Elijah spent a semester studying and interning in sports marketing at London's Imperial College. That fulfilled both his love of sports and a deep need to connect directly with people.

Not long after, he was recruited to work at Gerber Kawasaki by a close friend. At the time, hiring a guy willing to cut thirteen inches of his hair and donate it to kids with cancer was not exactly standard practice. However, Elijah was a new kind of advisor for changing times. It was 2010 and America had just suffered an economic collapse directly caused by financial professionals' greed and irresponsible behavior. Elijah was a breath of fresh island air.

Over the next ten years, he built a clientele from scratch based mostly (and not surprisingly) in entertainment and sports. Over time, he has honed his skills as an advisor and has become a Certified Financial Planner, a designation only achieved by 20% of all financial advisors.

Elijah's professional achievements beg the question: what kind of advisor do YOU want? The advisor who grumbles about taking a pay cut, or the true professional willing to work tirelessly for clients and give generously to others?

Designation Disclaimers

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. (CFP Board) owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, and CFP® (with plaque design) in the United States, which it authorizes use of by individuals who successfully complete CFP Board’s initial and ongoing certification requirements.

For more than 30 years, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification has been the standard of excellence for financial planners. CFP® professionals have met extensive training and experience requirements, and commit to CFP Board's ethical standards that require them to put their clients' interests first.

Candidates for the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification must have a bachelor’s degree (or higher) from an accredited college or university and three years of full-time personal financial planning experience or the equivalent part-time experience (2,000 hours equals one year full-time). Designation training requirements for the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ certification include completion of a CFP-board registered program, or hold one of the following: Certified Public Accountant (CPA); Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC); Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU); Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA); Ph.D. in financial planning, finance, business administration or economics; Doctor of Business Administration; or attorney's license. Following completion of the course requirements, applicants must complete a proctored final certification exam and continuing education of 30 hours every two years.

https://www.finra.org/investors/professional-designations/cfp

MEDIA

January 20, 2022

On Voaltility

Thomas Donnelly, CFP shares his thinking on the volatility we’ve seen in the market recently. Volatility, in this context, refers to the price movement of a stock up or down and is synonymous with risk. Keep reading and find out how he structures his thinking and portfolio in these times.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/volatility-gerberkawasaki

#gkviewpoint #volatility #stockmarket #tesla #tsl #investor #cfp #microsoft

January 27, 2022

5 Things The IRS Wants You To Know

Our GK Tax team wants to make your life easier. They are giving constant updates to our clients and followers on the most important things you need to know before the end of tax season. Listed below are things that the IRS WANTS you to know.

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/5-things-irs-wants-you-know-gerberkawasaki

#gkviewpoint #tax #accounting #taxseason #irs #taxfiling

February 10, 2022

7 Important Inflation-Based Tax Changes to Know for 2022

Make sure that you are planning accordingly because a lot has changed this year when it comes to your taxes. Some of these adjustments include alternative minimum tax, gift tax, and employee contributions to 401(k)s. Reach out to our tax department if you have questions about how all of this may affect you.

February 22, 2022

Deborah Talks - Why So Much Shame Around Money?

On this week's episode of Money Talks, Wendy welcomes Deborah Fryman. Deborah recently sold her house in LA and moved to Washington State, where she is now living her best financially free life. Listen to the full episode to learn about Deborah's battle with foreclosure and why it always pays off to seek help and ask questions.

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