It takes a committed team to coordinate and manage all aspects of financial health and well-being. We possess a deep-rooted passion for maintaining our core relationships with clients and helping them manage the primary resources and connections that inform their lives and futures.
We are committed to doing what’s best for our clients. We are always looking out for you.
We champion a rich and well-rounded life. Stability in financial life is the foundation of meaningful growth.
We are deeply aware of how our emotions shape financial decisions. We use this understanding to ensure decisions are made with confidence and reflect your values
We provide guidance that is on time and on point. Details matter as the little things make big things happen.
Service, Strategy, Results: Because there is no other way.
Matt transformed his childhood passion for the stock market into his life work and purpose. He graduated with a degree in Finance, Investment & Banking from the University of Wisconsin – Madison School of Business. Following college in 2003, he worked in a training program for Kellogg Capital Group. By the end of 2006, he served as a Senior Analyst for an investment fund, managing a team of five. During the 2008 recession, Matt received calls from friend and family requesting financial guidance. As financial markets melted down, Matt decided it was time to help people plan their financial strategies and to directly lift their financial spirits. In 2009 he founded his own firm, Illumination Wealth Management, with a simple mission – to empower people with financial clarity so they can build their wealth and live their best financial life.
Norman joined Illumination in 2015 as a Financial Planner, bringing with him a diverse array of financial experiences and background expertise. He previously worked as a CPA in a public accounting firm, as a manager of corporate income taxes at BellSouth, and as the leader of a financial operations team at CareerBuilder. Norman earned his master’s degree from the University of Georgia where he specialized in tax. He cultivated his interest in investing during college and made personal finance a key focus of his career. Norman moved to San Diego from Chicago in 2014 with his husband Matt and enjoys traveling, technology, photography, and cooking.
Ben joined Illumination in 2014 as an investment advisor, bringing more than 40 years of investment experience with him. Ben’s successful investment career has spanned many different market environments. Prior to joining Illumination, he served as a Senior Fixed Income Portfolio Manager, advising on over $6 billion of fixed income assets at Voyageur Asset Management and Piper Capital Management. While at Piper, Ben started and managed the number one ranked Lipper Government Bond Mutual Fund. He was CEO and board member of a recently acquired investment advisory firm, and is currently on the board and treasurer of a successful, privately held manufacturing company. In addition, Ben has appeared on CNBC and frequently appeared on Minnesota Public Radio’s “Sound Money.” For many years he regularly broadcasted market commentary on WCCO radio and has been featured in Fortune, Barron’s, Chicago Tribune, Minneapolis Star Tribune and other publications.
Kathleen joined Illumination Wealth in 2019 as an Associate Financial Planner and brings to the team an assorted background in investment management, financial planning, financial therapy, and teaching. Her life’s goal is to help clients understand their own relationships with money and improve their overall well-being through both therapeutic and financial competencies. Kathleen best describes her work as “Iyanla Vanzant… but for your finances.” She started her career in private banking, managing portfolios for institutions and high net worth individuals, before “seeing the light” and transitioning to fee-only financial planning. She also has experience teaching undergraduate personal finance at Kansas State University. Kathleen graduated from the University of Utah with a bachelor’s in economics and a master’s degree in finance. She also completed doctoral coursework in financial planning and therapy at Kansas State University. In addition, Kathleen is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional and a Certified Financial Therapist-I™ candidate. Investment News named her a Top 40 Under 40 in 2018 and FA Magazine named her one of the Top 10 Young Advisors to Watch in 2019.
Eric Niergarth is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner that joined the Illumination Wealth Management team in 2020 as an Associate Financial Planner. He brings with him comprehensive financial planning experience from working with a wealth management firm in Coronado, CA, and more than a decade of experience working at TD Ameritrade. Eric earned his bachelor’s degree from Arizona State University’s W.P. Carey School of Business in Tempe, AZ, where he majored in accounting. He cultivated a deep interest for financial planning during his tenure with TD Ameritrade and made personal finance the direction of his career. Outside of the office, Eric enjoys spending time with his wife Kate, his daughter Finley, and dog Bernard and his passions include camping, travel, pickleball, golf, and sailing.
Danielle joined Illumination Wealth in 2020 as our Client Service Concierge. Heeding the advice of her grandfather who taught her the value of investing, she embarked on a career in the financial advisory industry in 2014. For the past six years she managed the operations of a growing wealth management firm in Del Mar, California. Danielle is currently studying to become a registered investment advisor and looks forward to advancing her career in financial planning. She is a Connecticut native and graduate of the University of Connecticut (Go Huskies!). In her time outside of the office, Danielle enjoys camping, yoga and sailing.
Onyx is Illumination Wealth’s Financial Therapy Dog. Onyx was born during the Great Recession on a farm in South Dakota. He migrated out west and has been at Matt’s feet since the inception of Illumination Wealth. Onyx is a source of unconditional love and positivity for the entire Illumination Wealth community no matter the ups or downs.