The Financial Planning Association of Australia The Financial Planning Association of Australia

FPA recognises Australia’s top financial planners


The Financial Planning Association (FPA) has recognised the top tier of financial planners in Australia by announcing the national winners of the 2012 Best Practice Awards in Melbourne.

These awards acknowledge some of Australia’s best financial planners, the positive contribution they make to the financial future of Australians and the superior outcomes achieved for their clients.

CEO of the FPA, Mark Rantall, said that the Best Practice Awards showcase the high calibre of the nation’s financial planners including AFP® practitioners and CFP® professionals, the highest professional designation for financial planners recognised globally.

“They are a symbol of trust and excellence for all Australians seeking financial advice from a qualified and professional financial planner acting in their best interest,” he said.

National winners were chosen from all State winners and were announced at the 2012 Victorian State Awards ceremony in Melbourne, with all three national winners coming from Victoria this year.

Michelle Tate-Lovery CFP, Unified Financial Services, Carlton, has been awarded both the Victorian as well as the National FPA CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® Professional Best Practice Award. This award recognises worthy CFPprofessionals who have demonstrated the highest professional standards embodied by an FPA member.

Michelle began her practice in 1994 to deliver holistic, tailored and strategic financial advice to clients, primarily in the allied health professions. Proof of her success is seen in the long-term relationships forged with clients, some in excess of 20 years. Michelle contributed to the FPA Transition to Fees Taskforce, the FPA CFPCurriculum Taskforce: Ethics, Professionalism and Compliance and a Panel judge for three years for the FPA’s Value of Advice awards.

Shane Lenehan AFP, Silvan Ridge Financial Services, Warrnambool, has been awarded both the Victorian and National FPA Financial Planner AFP Best Practice Award. This award is designed to encourage and recognise the achievements of AFP professional planners who reflect a commitment to both excellence and professional development.

Shane was awarded the national honour due to his willingness to embrace the FPA Code of Ethics as he services a wide range of clients from all walks of life and with very different needs and financial capacity. He understands that an on-going relationship will provide the best outcome for clients. He firmly believes that all Australians do better when they work with a trusted financial adviser who fully understands their financial position. He also provides mentoring for young advisers through the FINSIA mentoring program.

Mark O’Leary CFP, Eluvia, Melbourne, has been awarded both the Victorian and National Future2 Community Service Best Practice Award. This award goes to an adviser who has, in a pro bono or public service capacity, made an outstanding contribution to improving the circumstances of the most socially excluded or financially disadvantaged members of the community.

Mark has worked with the Cancer Council since 2011 in order to provide pro bono financial advice to cancer sufferers who often have serious financial challenges as a consequence of their illness. Mark uses his involvement in the program as an ideal way of teaching emerging advisers in his practice the value of financial advice. Mark was also instrumental in setting up a pilot program with an accountancy firm to provide financial advice and services to small and medium sized enterprises struggling due to the owner’s illness.

Mr Rantall said that he had been extremely impressed by the high quality of the financial planners nominated for both the State and National awards this year.

“The FPA has always strived to improve standards in financial advice, and it is wonderful to be able to acknowledge these outstanding financial planners as the symbol of excellence in financial planning that they are,” he said.

This year, in addition to the prizes awarded by the FPA, PortfolioConstruction Forum presented all three National winners with the choice of complimentary attendance to their Market Summit or Conference in 2013.

Further information about the 2012 FPA Awards for Victoria

Please see below for a full list of Victorian Best Practice Award state winners, runners-up and Honorary Award winners:

FPA CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER®, Professional Best Practice Award

  • VIC State Winner: Michelle Tate-Lovery CFP, Unified Financial Services, Carlton
  • VIC State Runner-up and National Highly Commended: Joseph Stephan CFP, Stephan Strategic, Kew

FPA Financial Planner AFP® Best Practice Award

  • VIC State Winner: Shane Lenehan AFP, Silvan Ridge Financial Services, Warrnambool

Future2 Community Service Best Practice Award

  • VIC State Winner: Mark O’Leary CFP, Eluvia, Melbourne
  • VIC State Runner-up: Hari Maragos CFP, Victoria Wealth Management, Bundoora

The FPA also acknowledges outstanding contributions to the industry through its Honorary Awards as follows:

FPA Distinguished Service Award recognises an exceptional contribution to the work of the FPA and the common good of the profession through voluntary service to FPA Chapters, Committees or taskforces.

The VIC winner this year was Hari Maragos CFP, Victoria Wealth Management, Bundoora.

FPA Fellow Award recognises those that have made an outstanding and selfless contribution to the profession and the community. Award recipients will have demonstrated leadership and will command the respect of peers as exemplary role models.

The following VIC planners were presented with the Fellow Award:

  • Wayne Moriarty CFP, Moriarty Financial Services, Albury
  • Ian Mein CFP, Phillip Sons Financial Planning, Sale
  • Gary Lucas CFP, DMG Financial Planning, Sale
  • George Flack CFP, Flack Advisory Services Group, Eaglehawk
  • Terry Kays CFP, Premier Investment Solutions, Traralgon
  • Rodney Lavin CFP, Lavin & Associates, Traralgon