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 the 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.
John passionately believes in the propitious power of financial planning. He thrives on helping others master their finances, knowing the power this confers to meaningfully enrich their lives. And he particularly enjoys working with the more advanced challenges of planning for busy professionals, business people, and entrepreneurs. John is a Certified Financial Planner® who originally came to planning from a prior career in high-tech management and entrepreneurship. His prior positions include, co-founding a successful startup as Vice President of Engineering at PicoPower Technology, and leading multiple design teams as Director of Engineering at National Semiconductor. John also holds a Master’s degree in Business Administration from Arizona State University, and a Master’s in International Management from Thunderbird Graduate School. Beyond the office, John is an avid health and fitness buff. So far, he has tackled the Ironman Triathlon (Kona, Hawaii), the Boston Marathon, and the Pikes Peak Marathon. While above all, John enjoys spending quality time with his delightful partner and four fabulous children.
Sean started his career in financial planning and wealth management in 2003 and has served in various advisory, training, and leadership positions with larger firms and smaller family offices. Sean is passionate about partnering with clients to grow, protect, and optimize their wealth. Over the years, he has had the opportunity to provide peace of mind and positively impact the financial lives of thousands of clients and their families. Sean is a Certified Financial PlannerTM and earned his Bachelor’s in Accountancy from Arizona State University. Sean is an Arizona native and currently resides in Scottsdale with Erica and their dog, Joey. Outside of work, Sean enjoys playing golf and is an avid fan of his local sports teams.
Sara joined Illumination in 2022 as a Financial Planner. She graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder with a degree in Finance and began her career working for an investment bank in their energy markets division. Sara decided to make the switch to personal finance due to her desire to work more closely with clients and help them achieve their personal goals. She earned her Certified Financial Planner ™ designation in 2017. Sara lives in Houston, TX with her wife and their three dogs. Outside of work, she enjoys spending time outdoors playing golf or cheering on her favorite sports teams at her neighborhood brewery.
Jenna joined Illumination in the fall of 2021. She began her career in financial services in 2017 to strengthen her own financial education and followed her interest deeper into the industry, becoming a registered investment advisor in 2021. She has found financial planning to be an incredibly rewarding career path. Jenna obtained her bachelor’s degree from Hartwick College in Oneonta, NY and earned her enrolled agent (EA) credential in 2023. Jenna lives in Boise, ID with her husband Justin and dog XL, and enjoys hiking, biking, and gardening.
Christopher joined Illumination Wealth in 2022 as an Associate Financial Planner. He began his work in financial services working for a Business Management firm in Nashville, TN, working with high-net-worth musicians and touring acts. He quickly discovered a passion for financial planning and joined Illumination Wealth to spend more time doing what he loves, helping people organize their financial life. He has a degree from Middle Tennessee State University with a degree in Music Business and a minor in Accounting. Christopher lives in Nashville, TN with his partner Jamie and their dog, Moxie. When not in the office, Christopher enjoys playing rugby, long hikes, and playing board games with friends.
Steinar joined Illumination in 2023 as an Associate Financial Planner. He graduated from Butler University with a degree in finance before working for a small, registered investment advisor (RIA) firm in the Midwest. Steinar has since joined Illumination Wealth to continue to do what he enjoys doing, helping people on their financial journeys. He currently lives in Indianapolis, IN with his girlfriend Haley and cat Kuzco. Steinar likes golfing, hiking, being outdoors, and anything to do with sports.
Penny joined Illumination in February of 2024 as an Associate Financial Planner. She is working toward the completion of her Master of Legal Studies in Wealth Management at Texas A&M University – School of Law after previously earning her Certified Financial Planner ™ designation, among other designations. She operated her own firm for over eight years as a back-office financial planner and came to planning from prior careers in the agricultural banking and accounting industries. These roles fueled her desire to help others understand and be an active participant in their financial lives. Penny resides in East Texas with her husband Jeff. She enjoys spending time with her family, hiking with Chap (her mini-aussie), and volunteering for youth organizations.
Danielle joined Illumination Wealth in the spring of 2020. She began her career in the financial services industry in 2014 assisting the development of a small boutique investment firm in Del Mar, CA. As the Operations Manager for Illumination Wealth, Danielle is a dedicated professional with a passion for enhancing efficiency and ensuring exceptional client experiences. Danielle obtained her bachelor’s degree from the University of Connecticut in Storrs, CT. She currently resides in San Diego, and enjoys traveling, golf, and spending time with her family.
Stephanie became part of the Illumination Wealth team in January 2022, taking on the role of Client Service Associate. Her journey began after she earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas State University, and she ventured into the financial services sector. During her initial tenure, Stephanie provided invaluable support to two private wealth managers. Her deep commitment to client service and continuous learning led her to assume the position of Client Service Manager at Illumination Wealth. In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two children.
Nicole joined Illumination Wealth in December 2023 as a Client Service Associate. She spent 17 years at a Berkeley investment firm and enjoys assisting clients on the service and administrative side of their financial journey. Nicole is a graduate of San Diego State University and was inducted into the SDSU Hall of Fame for tennis in 2003. She is an Arizona native and currently lives in the Bay Area with her husband and semi-feral cat. Nicole enjoys long walks, reading, trips to wine country, and playing music.
Barbara joined Illumination in 2021 as a Senior Bookkeeper. In addition to being a Certified ProAdvisor for QuickBooks Online and having established her own small-business bookkeeping practice, she brings with her a wide ranging business background in Project Management, Sales and Account Management across a variety of industries. Her experiences fueled her interest in helping small business owners better manage their financial accounts so they could in-turn grow their businesses. She earned her bachelors at the University of California, Davis. Outside the office Barbara enjoys learning the piano, gardening, making kombucha, and spending time with her family.
Hannah joined Illumination Wealth in 2022 as a Full Charge Bookkeeper. A Certified QuickBooks Online ProAdvisor, she possesses a diverse array of business bookkeeping experience across a variety of industries, including NFPs, e-commerce, professional services, and real estate. As the former Head of Finance for a NYC-based 501(c) non-profit, she has firsthand experience working with an independent bookkeeping service as a client, and Hannah leverages this understanding of the client experience to ensure a best-in-class engagement for clients. Hannah holds a BFA from Ohio University and is an avid film and literary fiction buff.
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.