Cooper Wealth Management’s high-achieving, philanthropic director, Felicity Cooper, has won the Financial Planner of the Year Award at this year’s Money Management Women in Financial Services Awards.
Cooper, who holds her own Australian Financial Services license (AFSL), has had a long history of both investment management and financial planning, and was the youngest female stock broker in the country when she began her career.
In terms of what sets her apart from other financial planners, Cooper said it’s her investment management and broking background that gives her the edge.
“A lot of planners we say, ‘We’re very good with strategy and structure’ and then let people down a little bit on the investment side of things ... and stock brokers are typically good at the investment side of things and terrible at strategy,” she said.
“We come in with the experience of both – being able to do the strategy and being really strong on the investment side of things as well.”
Her credibility and diversity has been recognised by the industry as well, with nominations for investment manager of the year with Money Management’s Women in Financial Services Awards last year, Australian financial planner of the year with the Financial Planning Association, and semi finalist for female in excellence with the Association of Financial Advisers (AFA).
What she was most of proud of, though, was her commitment to education, and the opportunity she was given via a grant by the Australian Shareholders Association to educate females over the age of 65 in financial literacy.
“We’re currently doing that through regional Victoria on a pilot program, which, if we get good outcomes from that, we hope to get an additional grant from the government to take that nationwide – it’s really exciting.”
Cooper has plans for sustainability, both in terms of a workplace for her staff and outcomes for her clients.
“I’ve had my own business for three years now so it’s still early days, but in five years I hope to be employing 15 staff rather than three, which means a turnover of around three million.”
Education would remain a great focus for Cooper in the future, and she hopes to further both face-to-face education with females but also via her online Facebook website, Financial Women, which has over 4000 followers.