Gary Fisher has been a wealth advisor for 28 years. Along the way he’s worked with a wide diversity of clients, including individuals, business owners, professional athletes and families. He’s developed a disciplined process and core principles that influence his work. In this column, Gary tells the stories of how two iconic American folk heroes influenced his business principles.
I’ve had a great diversity of clients over the years, but none could compare to a client I obtained, initially, by doing some business financial planning work.
When I was referred to the client, all I knew was that he was from Berrien Springs and the word ‘GOAT’ was in the business name. Must be a goat farmer. Nope. It stood for the ‘Greatest Of All Time—the original GOAT— Muhammad Ali!
Ali, as a client, is a great example of how important it is to have solid protection for both yourself and your business. When I first met with him it was obvious that this was a glaring need, and in fact, was the exact planning area I was able to help him with the most – the “protect and defend” component of his plan.
Having a strong offense (creating income, investing successfully, and generating wealth) is critical to creating a strong financial game plan. But so too is protecting it, by creating a resilient defensive strategy (insurance, risk management, tax and estate planning strategies).
I always keep that notion front and center when working with clients, most of whom do not have Ali’s wealth, and are never likely to enjoy his level of fame.
To this day, working to help protect what my clients have built as it relates to their wealth, health, business, retirement and investments is a paramount feature of my process.
The King of Rock-and-Roll
Over the years, I’ve known three men who were close to Elvis Presley: Elvis’s Uncle Vester, and his two primary security chiefs, Dick Grob and Sam Thompson. They all told the same story: Elvis lived paycheck to paycheck (granted they were big paychecks), and basically spent everything he made. He had no protection or plan for his financial future, and especially no estate plan to transfer wealth and minimize taxes.
When a still-young Elvis shockingly died, the failure to have a strong financial defense strategy almost sunk the entire Presley family ship and legacy. Only by his heirs wisely turning his Graceland mansion into a museum and tourist attraction was the family able to pay the estate taxes, and save the day and his estate.
After learning this firsthand, the idea of keeping money in the family, and passing it on to who you want, how you want and in the way you want, took on new meaning for me.
I’ve been very fortunate to have had these influences, and they provide lessons I can share with my clients.
If the King of Rock-and-Roll could be in financial trouble, anyone can. Reducing taxes, and protecting and defending my clients’ goals remain cornerstone principles of my practice, as a result of what I learned from the King and the GOAT.”
GARY L. FISHER, MSA, CFDA, LUTCF
PRESIDENT, WEALTH ADVISOR
G.L. FISHER CAPITAL MANAGEMENT, LLC
MOTT FOUNDATION BUILDING
503 S. SAGINAW STREET, SUITE 700B
FLINT, MI 48502