CFP- Certified Financial Planner

The CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and CFP® certification marks are financial planning credentials awarded by Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. (CFP Board) to individuals who meet education, examination, experience and ethics requirements. First, is an educational requirement, satisfied by a variety of academic degrees and professional certifications. Alternatively, you must attend a CFP®-approved program of classroom education. Second, you must pass a 10-hour exam given over two days. The test measures your ability to apply financial planning principles to real client problems. Third, you need three years of qualifying full-time work experience in the financial planning field. Fourth, the CFP® certification requires you to agree to adhere to CFP Board’s Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Rules of Conduct and Financial Planning Practice Standards, and acknowledge CFP Board’s right to enforce them through its Disciplinary Rules and Procedures.


CFA- Chartered Financial Analysis

The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) charter is an investment credential that, for more than 60 years, has been the global standard for embodying the integrity, dedication, and advanced skills needed to build a stronger, more accountable financial industry. No credential is as widely respected for its focus on current investment expertise and performing in the client’s best interest. Earning the charter requires demonstrating four years of professional investment experience, committing to uphold a comprehensive code of ethics, and passing three levels of rigorous exams that test an advanced curriculum of investment management and analysis skills. This achievement takes multiple years of persistent effort and hundreds of hours of study per exam level.

AIF- Accredited Investment Fiduciary

Accredited Investment Fiduciary® (AIF®) professional designation demonstrates knowledge and competency in the area of fiduciary responsibility, and communicates a commitment to standards of investment fiduciary excellence. A client will benefit from using the expertise of an advisor with the AIF designation because the advisor will be held to a standard of excellence to which others may not adhere. Holders of the AIF® have a reputation in the industry for the ability to implement a prudent process into their investment practices, and have successfully completed a specialized program and comprehensive examination on investment fiduciary standards

MSA- Master of Science in Accountancy

Master of Science in Accounting (MSA) is an intensive program that prepares candidates with a degree or background in accounting for careers in public accounting, industry, government and nonprofit organizations. CPA firms now view themselves as "professional service firms" and demand highly visible, articulate business professionals with diverse backgrounds. The MSA program not only focuses on the real world technical and analytical skills required in accounting, but also builds upon the leadership and critical thinking skills necessary to be successful in the field.


CRPC- Retirement Planning Counselor

The College for Financial Planning awards this designation to investment practitioners who complete its Chartered Retirement Plan Counselor, CRCP®, Professional Education Program. The course materials define a “road map to retirement,” enabling the practitioner to focus on clients’ pre-and post-retirement needs, as well as issues related to asset management and estate planning. The topics in the CRPC® program are structured in logical order, going through the retirement process from start to finish. The curriculum is based on a client-centered, problem-solving method using case studies to give the practitioner a hands-on approach to the material. The designee must complete the courses, sit for an exam, commit to a code of ethics and agree to pursue continuing education.


PPC – Professional Plan Consultant

The Professional Plan Consultant™ designation was developed by Financial Service Standards, to help professionals that work with employer sponsored retirement plans to specialize in this increasingly regulated niche of the financial industry.  Recent regulatory changes to the qualified retirement plan industry has sparked an urgency to ensure retirement plan service professionals have specialized training and resources to help sponsors meet their fiduciary obligations and a means of documenting that a prudent practices are being followed in the management of an employer-sponsored plan.  Those professionals that help retirement plan fiduciaries demonstrate a high level of knowledge and the ability to provide sponsors with the tools necessary to manage their plan effectively.


CFM – Certified Financial Manager

The requirements for certification included passing four examinations testing economics, management, corporate finance, management accounting, decision analysis, and ethics. In addition, the candidate was required to complete two years of relevant work experience, hold a Bachelor’s degree, be a member of IMA, and abide by the Statement of Ethical Professional Practice. Once certified, a CFM is required to maintain membership in IMA and complete 30 hours of continuing education annually.