“Our focus is on our client's personal goals. It's rewarding to go through this process with them because it gives clarity and purpose to the work we all do every day.”
After a career in banking, Roland Gagne realized his passion was in guiding others along their best financial planning path; leading to fulfillment in all aspects of life. He founded Pension Professionals to be a different kind of financial services company – one that focuses on the value of a life coach in creating each client's own financial vision, including goals and action steps.
This approach to professional life inspired Roland to explore further opportunities in assisting others. Through his involvement in the Biddeford-Saco Rotary Club, he volunteered as a board member of the Rotary Club of Biddeford Saco which developed grants, one of which supported female entrepreneurs in Kenya, Africa, helping them earn money to raise their families. He also contributed to establishing a technical school – most of its students have never used a computer and many are orphans of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. His experiences in Africa have allowed Roland “to recognize the reward in being sensitive and aware of others' needs.”
After graduating from Biddeford High School, Roland earned his Associate's degree in Business Management from the University of Southern Maine, a Bachelor's in Business Administration from Thomas Edison State College and a Master's of Financial Services from the American College. In addition, Roland is also a Chartered Financial Consultant, a Certified Financial Planner™ certificant and an Accredited Investment Fiduciary. He resides in Standish with his wife of more than 20 years and their children.
“There’s nothing like coming home. After having lived out of state for 14 years, I realized that Maine is where my heart is. And now having this opportunity to work for an organization as compassionate and family friendly as Pension Professionals, it makes the homecoming even sweeter. I feel honored to be part of this gifted crew that prudently listens to the hopes and dreams of our clients, and then turns those dreams into reality.”
Aaron’s addition to Pension Professionals is the perfect complement to an already skilled advisory team. His diverse management experience in banking and finance serves him well.
For years, Aaron was a licensed branch manager at Sun Trust and Regions Banks in Florida, supervising staff and providing investment services to customers. He also led a team of regional bankers, helping them get licensed and mentoring them on products and services. For the last six years, Aaron served as a financial advisor for Merrill Lynch, J. P. Morgan Chase in Florida and Regions Bank in Tennessee.
Aaron’s role as Director of Business Development and Compliance at Pension Professionals is to manage the overall sales process of the financial advisors. This includes hiring, training, coaching and managing their performance. “I want our advisors to see me as someone they can freely come to for advice to maximize their potential here.” Aaron is also responsible to make sure that the financial advisors comply with all policies and procedures.
Aaron grew up in Biddeford and attended Champlain College in Vermont and the University of Southern Maine in Portland. He’s been married almost 20 years and is the proud parent of three sons. He is a current member of Saco River Valley Kiwanis Club and Aaron also enjoys hiking, biking, drumming and following the fortunes of the Red Sox and Dallas Cowboys.
“From day one, Pension Professionals has never felt like a financial office, which tends to be cold and sterile with no feeling. Pension Professionals has always felt warm and inviting, allowing clients to feel “at home” and relaxed.”
Michelle came to Pension Professionals as a temporary receptionist after an extensive background in office management in the architectural and engineering industry. Now, more than six years later, she is our Director of Operations and Client Experiences. Along with continuing to coordinate and schedule appointments between our clients and advisors, Michelle also does the financial reporting, human resources and benefits, technology coordination and facilities management for the office.
“Pension Professionals belief in family first has enabled me to be involved in my children’s activities as well as bringing financial support with a sense of satisfaction.”
During her career at Pension Professions, Michelle has obtained her certification as a Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional, FPQP®, which allows her to provide an even higher level of assistance to the advisors in helping to prepare and administer financial plans and reports for clients. She also has been commissioned as a Notary Public by the State of Maine.
“Helping others, whether it be a fellow team member, assisting a client to resolve an issue or developing creative ways to make the work we do more efficient has always been a driving force to give myself satisfaction in what I do each day here.”
Michelle truly enjoys interacting with our clients on a personal level and build lasting relationships while getting to see them smile when leaving the office knowing that their financial matters are in good hands and knowing that we are making a difference in helping them reach their goals.
“Occasionally, our clients can be worried, concerned or dealing with a difficult circumstance like the death of a loved one and need a compassionate ear before moving the conversation to financial issues. Our team can be very intuitive to that dynamic and react with caring, warmth and compassion.”
Michelle graduated from Thornton Academy with honors and obtained her FPQP® designation through the College of Financial Planning. She was born in Portland, Maine and has lived in and raised her children in the Saco area for the last 30 years. Michelle enjoys working in her perennial gardens, camping, socializing with friends and being very involved with her son’s sports and educational goals.
“At Pension Professionals, we work through a team concept. This allows us to make the best recommendations possible for the benefit of our clients.”
Thomas Simpson is a wealth manager who helps people realize their dreams, goals and desires through a detailed process of questions and answers. By gathering information and making recommendations, Tom works with clients to establish long-term financial plans and then implement the proper solutions. He says that Pensions Professionals encourages staff to work as a team, and also to specialize in specific areas as individuals. That way, this team of professionals can best support each other and their clients in ensuring goals are accomplished.
Born and raised in the Midwest, Tom attended Rockford College in Illinois before taking specialized classes in the financial services industry through the American College. He is a certified Life Underwriter Training Council Fellow (LUTCF), specializing in business and estate planning. Tom is also a lifetime member of the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT), an international, independent association of nearly 36,000 of the world's leading life insurance and financial services professionals from more than 430 companies in 78 countries.
“Pension Professionals is unique in that we focus first on understanding our clients’ personal goals and aspirations in life, and then on making their finances accommodate those goals and aspirations.”
As an Administrative Associate at Pension Professionals, Christina supports the planning team by processing client applications, accounts, and financial information. She acts as an intermediary between clients and their financial representatives, and interacts with clients by phone, email, and through Pension Professionals’ social media outlets.
Christina is enthusiastic about working with clients and the Pension Professionals team. “Everyone at Pension Professionals has a fantastic attitude and works together so well.”
Prior to joining Pension Professionals, Christina was Office Administrator and direct assistant to the CEO and President of Howe & Howe Technologies. While there, Christina provided a wide array of administrative and support duties, including drafting documents and designing graphics for company materials, redesigning the company’s website, and managing the company’s social media.
Before that, she worked for five years as an account manager at Maine Staffing Group, where she recruited and interviewed employment candidates in order to help her clients to fill open positions within their businesses.
Christina attributes her affinity for finance and financial services to having been in charge of her own finances from a young age. She currently lives in Saco, where she enjoys “painting, singing, tending my vegetable garden, and spending time with my amazing daughter.”
"Our advisors are not only knowledgeable and talented, but their clear warmth and compassion allows them to walk in another person's shoes."
Its Tiffany's own compassion, though, that makes her the ideal candidate to represent Pension Professionals. Tiffany brings over 10 years of customer service and administrative experience to us. She graduated from Portland School for Nannies in 1998 and worked 10 years as a live-out nanny. Tiffany also worked for a transportation company where she drove mentally challenged individuals to and from their day programs. As Tiffany likes to say, "A smile can go a long way to turn a day around."
"Tomorrow will soon become the present and soon enough you will be living that." That's a big reason she chose to work at Pension Professionals. "What I've learned is that it's never to early to plan for your financial future-even in your 20's. Everyone who walks through our doors immediately feels respected and valued, whether they're here for a small question or a life changing event."
Tiffany is also impressed with the advisors' ability to anticipate any changes or crisis that might occur down the road for our clients. This attention to detail gives our clients a genuine sense of security-and knowledge that they couldn't be in better hands.
Tiffany grew up in Saco and graduated from Thornton Academy. She attended Mcintosh College majoring in photography and currently resides in Sanford, where she also runs a photography business. In her down time, she enjoys New England sports, swimming, roadtrips, barbecuing and adventures with her husband and three young children.