Financial Focus: Kim Molitor
Acoffee from Starbucks waiting for you at your meeting.
A handwritten card received in the mail on your birthday. Kim Molitor, relationship manager at Windward Wealth Strategies, Inc. in Oshkosh, prides herself on providing personalized attention — and her concern for clients extends far beyond financial planning.
Molitor describes her clients as an extended family, so her team will go above and beyond the normal realm of duties as financial planners. She adds, “Our clients can call anyone in our office for help on various matters
— even those that might not involve their investments.”
The road to Winward Wealth Strategies
Molitor got her start in the financial services industry at U.S. Bank. She worked her way up, embracing new opportunities as they presented themselves.
Molitor had been working at Associated Trust Company when she saw a newspaper posting that Greg Pierce, a former partner, was back in the Oshkosh area. She stopped by his office and discovered he was looking for help.
“I knew we could make a good team and service his clients well together,” adds Molitor. She joined Reinhart Partners in Oshkosh in December
2009. Molitor and her co-workers became Windward Wealth Strategies in April 2015.
Greg Pierce is the portfolio manager, conducting the research and designing the portfolios. Molitor and Walter Koskinen serve as relationship
managers, working with clients on financial plans and serving as a point of contact. Cassandra Knight supports the team as a client relationship specialist.
Focusing on client service
Windward Wealth Strategies has a small client base, serving under 100 clients. Molitor explains because of the number of clients, they are
able to know a great deal about each one, from the names of every family member to their hopes and dreams.
“We take the time to listen to our clients. Everyone’s situation is different,” adds Molitor.
When first working with a client, the firm begins with a financial plan. Molitor explains they take a holistic approach to understanding a client’s
financial story, considering the past, present and future. They evaluate the client’s immediate cash needs, future cash needs and current
net worth. Then, they consider what is needed for retirement and design a personalized portfolio.
“Every client is unique, so no one fits into a model portfolio,” says Molitor. “Everything is designed around what’s right and appropriate for that client.”
In addition to investments, Windward Wealth Strategies discusses retirement planning, insurance, taxes, wills, trusts and education funding.
A day at the office
Molitor devotes her days to servicing clients, working on financial plans, connecting with clients and driving the firm’s marketing efforts. Many times her day extends past the typical 9 to 5, meeting with clients at a time that is convenient for them.
She explains working with people is the most satisfying part of her job. “You develop relationships — you get to know their families and help their kids set up their first bank accounts — it is very rewarding,” she says. And, because the industry is continuously changing, there is always
something to learn.
Knight sits right outside Molitor’s office and assists with many of the incoming requests. “We actually work quite close. I am right outside her office so we can bounce ideas and questions off of each other throughout the day,” says Knight.
Knight concentrates on the details and technical side of the business. She handles the daily, monthly and quarterly accounting and reporting but also works well with clients.
“Cassandra complements me in every way,” adds Molitor. “I would not be where I am today without an associate like Cass.”
Finding a niche
Molitor specializes in wealth preservation, retirement, budgeting, tax planning and wealth transfer. While Molitor works with a variety of clients,
including doctors, corporate executives and small business owners from across the country, she especially enjoys assisting women.
“I recognize that financial planning for women is different. Women face different financial challenges than men, including divorce, widowhood,
time in the workforce, earning less and a longer retirement,” she says. “I take these special characteristics into consideration when preparing a
Outside the office, Molitor focuses her efforts on charitable organizations that she not only is passionate about, but also where she can make the greatest impact. She is currently serving as board president for the Oshkosh Public Library and a board member of Winnefox Library System. Molitor is the incoming president of TEMPO of the Fox Valley, connecting her to the area’s leading women. She is involved in two
giving circles — GEMS (Giving Empowers My Sisters) and 100 Women Who Care.
When asked her greatest contribution to these organizations, Molitor explains her specialty is networking and connecting people. She says, “It’s helpful to stay connected and have knowledge about community nonprofits so when planning with clients, I can be sure to cover any charitable intentions they might have.”
Molitor also makes spending time with her husband and teenage son, Trevor, a priority. She explains juggling home and work is always a challenge. “I focus on one day at a time and try to give 100 percent while at work and 100 percent while at home,” adds Molitor.
Planning for the future
Looking forward, Molitor hopes to see the business and staff double in size. She intends to continue to find opportunities to assist women — an underserved market — with their financial goals. She adds, “I especially want women to know they can turn to me for honest advice.”
Chasing the Bucks D-League
Windward Wealth Strategies is known for bringing unique investment opportunities to its clients. So, when the news that the Milwaukee
Bucks franchise was looking to expand to include an official minor league team in the state, the financial planners got involved in hopes of
bringing the team to Oshkosh.
“Over our careers, we have worked with a number of professional athletes. My partner Greg would review various business and sports opportunities on behalf of our athletes. He’s also an avid sports fan,” says Molitor.
His knowledge of sports and the expansion of the NBA Development Team spurred discussions with the Milwaukee Bucks about their plans to establish a D-League team.
For the next year or more, Molitor helped work on a business plan on how to make the team viable for investors and the community. “Our Oshkosh community leaders and partners embraced the idea and assisted our firm in completing a lengthy Request for Proposal (RFP), which was submitted to the Bucks organization. I am so proud of Oshkosh and how the community rallied around the idea,” adds Molitor.
The Bucks are expected to make their decision in late July. “Even if the Bucks do not choose Oshkosh as their choice for a D-League site, Oshkosh has shown that they truly are an event city,” says Molitor. “Windward will continue to bring these types of investment options to
our clients and they know these deals have the backing of our trusted partners.” w