What Is An Independent Advisor With Robert Russo (Ep.6)

What does an independent advisor do and what makes an advisor independent?

Independent advisors typically branch away from large firms and manage their clients independently. When considering a financial advisor, it’s important to know what they can do for you and ensure they can meet your needs; an independent advisor might be what you’re looking for.

In this episode of The No BS Podcast, Ryan Shanks is joined by founder and CEO of Independent Advisor Alliance, Robert Russo, to discuss what it means to be an independent advisor and how they differ from the typical financial advisor.

Ryan and Robert discuss:

  • What brought Robert to work in financial services
  • What advisors looking to start or join an RIA should consider
  • Why advisors are breaking away and becoming independent
  • What advisors should consider when deciding between becoming RIA and broker dealer dominant
  • And more

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About Our Guest:

Robert Russo is the founder and CEO of Independent Advisor Alliance, the largest LPL hybrid firm in the mid Atlantic. They are committed to providing their advisors with the highest level of compliance oversight, advisor advocacy, and personalized service while maintaining an advantageous financial model. Additionally, Robert is a member of the board of directors for communities and schools of Charlotte Mecklenburg, and is a husband and father to two boys.


Finding Purpose and Fulfillment in YOUR Life (Ep.5)

There is no ‘right’ age to find purpose and fulfillment in your life.

You are never too old to find a new passion, travel the world, or even start a new career.

In this inspiring episode of The No BS Podcast, Ryan Shanks is joined by writer, photographer and former magazine publishing executive, Michael Clinton, to discuss his journey finding fulfillment and his advice and wisdom he has gained from living his life to the fullest.

Ryan and Michael discuss:

  • The reason why Michael got into the publishing industry and his experience with celebrities 
  • Michael’s advice for a young person who wants to make a difference in the world
  • Following your passions and breaking your unproductive habits to purposefully fill those spaces with things that make you happy
  • How to get ‘unstuck’ and easy steps to take that can help you find fulfillment
  • And more


Connect With Michael Clinton:

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About Our Guest:

Michael Clinton is the special media advisor to the Hearst Corporation’s CEO. He is also an author and photographer, has traveled through 124 countries, has run marathons on 7 continents, has started a nonprofit foundation, is a private pilot, is a part owner of a vineyard in Argentina, hold two master’s degrees, and still has a long list of life experiences that he plans to tackle.


Are Industry Awards a Load of Crap? With Jason Lahita (Ep. 4)

Have you ever wondered if getting an industry award is actually meaningful, or if it’s just a rigged system?

Well, they might be more useful than you think…

In this episode, Ryan Shanks speaks with Jason Lahita, founding partner of Street Cred PR to discuss all things about industry awards and how they can actually be very beneficial. Jason discusses how industry awards can be used not only for personal gain, but even to leverage your business and bring in new clients.

Jason discusses:

  • How Jason got into the PR and communications industry
  • The ways Jason’s past experience in the navy have shaped him and contributed to his business outlook
  • Credibility marketing, what it means, and how it can help you grow your business
  • How winning industry awards can bring publicity and attention not only to you, but also to your business
  • And more

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About Our Guest:

Jason’s varied skillset includes — but is not limited to — the ability to sell fine wine, fixing US Navy warplanes as an avionics technician, sports and nautical themed metaphors, and a refined understanding of high-quality PR practices acquired over years of experience playing the game.

After working in PR at United Capital Financial Advisors and receiving his MBA from UC Irvine, he started his first PR shop, FiComm Partners, in 2012. For six years, Jason built the company alongside an awesome business partner who had joined in 2014. At the close of those years, the two found that they wanted different things for their small orange business, so Jason departed for his next chapter – starting an actual orange business. Just kidding, although if it had been an orange business, things might have gone differently. Oranges are oranges, after all.

Leaving FiComm in good hands, Jason returned to his roots of working within RIAs in 2018 when he joined Integrated Partners, a fantastic financial firm that reminded him a lot of United Capital. For two years, he ran PR inside this great organization, until one day, it was time for Jason to set forth and start anew in 2020.

And so, StreetCred PR was born, with Integrated Partners as the company’s first client. Soon new clients joined, and then more clients, and a growing team of fantastic people driving the work.

When not obsessing over StreetCred clients and his teammates’ success, Jason enjoys spending time with family and friends, golfing terribly, and skiing rather well.  He loves the NY Knicks, the Yankees and the NY Football Giants.  Rumor has it he still fancies those fine wines.


Creating Community Within the Advisory Space With Justin Castelli (Ep. 3)

In the financial industry, there can be a lot of missing pieces. But creating a supportive community with other financial advisors just might be the solution you’ve been looking for.

In this episode, Ryan Shanks speaks with Justin Castelli, the co-founder of Advisors Growing as a Community (AGC) and founder of RLS Wealth. Justin discusses how he got into the financial industry, his journey in creating the AGC community, and his strong belief in community building.

Justin discusses:

  • How he became a financial advisor and the co-founder of AGC advisors
  • Why he’s creating a global community for entrepreneurial financial advisors
  • His top online communitites for financial services
  • The importance in celebrating, supporting, and recognizing the work of other financial advisors
  • And more


Connect With Justin Castelli:

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About Our Guest:

Justin Castelli currently spends his days in the roles of Financial Advisor and Founder of RLS Wealth, Chief of Staff at Onramp invest, Co-founder of the AGC and he recently launched a brand extension of RLS Wealth, Pursuit


2. The BS That Recruiters Won’t Tell You With Eric Savage

In the recruiting industry, there are a lot of incentives that exist to motivate you to take on a new journey. However, there is also a lot of BS that recruiters won’t tell you.

In this episode, Ryan Shanks speaks with Eric Savage, co-founder and chief technology officer at FA Match. Ryan and Eric have a “No BS” conversation about all the things that recruiters don’t tell you when they’re pursuing you, and why it’s important to know about the secrets and the tricks of the trade.

Eric discusses:

  • Why recruiters don’t tell financial advisors how they are getting paid
  • Why fees drive the majority of all recruiting in this business
  • What recruiters don’t tell you about the tagging process in their CRM system
  • And more

Connect With Eric Savage:

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About Our Guest:

Eric Savage has been in software development for well over 20 years and has spent time in the largest of companies and the smallest of startups. Prior to FA Match he spent most of his time in large scale development organizations, usually in a core engineering role. 

Eric has been a contributor to several open source efforts over the years and still makes a point to write code daily and stay sharp.



1. Meet Your Host, Ryan Shanks

Introducing The No BS Podcast with your host, Ryan Shanks, founder and CEO of FA Match!

In this show, Ryan Shanks looks behind the curtain of financial services to find answers to the biggest questions everyone is thinking, but no one is asking. 

In this inaugural episode, Ryan Shanks takes listeners along the incredible journey through financial services that ultimately led him to launching FA Match, a two-way recruitment platform that is optimized for advisors to connect with RIA’s, broker-dealers, OSJ’s, and other financial services firms. Ryan shares more about who he is inside and outside of the office, including how he found his own unique place in this rapidly changing industry. You don’t want to miss this very first episode. 

Ryan discusses:

  • How he got into the industry in the first place––and how he works with advisors and companies to build cohesive relationships
  • A personal philosophy perspective that resonates with him
  • One thing most people don’t know about him
  • How he stays focused on the big picture, rather than getting caught up in the minute details
  • And more

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