Broker Check

Bluffton Location

117 E Elm Street

Bluffton, OH 45817


Dear Clients,

I leaned forward in my new office chair to close the conference room door. As I scooted to the edge of the chair, it suddenly slipped away from me and started to tip over. I had one of those awkward moments where I needed to decide whether to recover myself by extreme effort or just go with the flow and sit down on the floor in a controlled manner. I chose to go to the floor as the chair escaped from under me and banged rather loudly against the office wall.

Renea asked from the outer office if I was alright, Kathi came in from the other direction smiling at my mishap, and Orrie was in the background, chuckling to himself, I think. I said I was alright and climbed off the floor as a comment of “the only thing hurt was his dignity” floated in the air. :-)  After 32 years in the industry I thought to myself, “Is this the beginning of the end? Am I on the slippery slope to obscurity? Is this the first sign of me ‘losing it’?” Of course not! 

I laughed at myself, accompanied by everyone else(!), and got back to work. I have had far worse accidents, slips, verbal gaffes, and embarrassing incidents over the years and probably will continue to have them because I continue to be actively engaged in my profession. We laugh a lot in our office, at ourselves and with each other. I believe we have a general atmosphere of joy and peace that comes from the Lord’s blessings, the genuine passion we have for serving others, and the quality of our staff. So instead of fearful concern, the mishap helped me remember all that God has done.

We have seen a lot of changes over 32 years. Portable computers were first coming into the work force in 1987 and “they” promised the paperwork would diminish, productivity and efficiency would increase dramatically, and it would make for much more free time. Some of that was true and some of it not, but like every new invention, it is the human aspect that drives the results. We used to be able to process a simple IRA case with about 6-10 pages, now it takes 50-100. Do we have more free time? It feels like the opposite is true because of all the extra paperwork.  

I am just making a few observations, not complaining at all. One thing I have noticed over the years is the need to stay informed, learned, educated, trained, focused, and diligent which are all compounded through years of experience. I wrote last time, when focusing on college debt, about my graduate and post graduate education. When I started in financial services 32 years ago, it was natural to pursue academic studies in this new field. Through rigorous study with the American College, I earned several designations that gave me a thorough understanding of my chosen field and am very thankful for the opportunity. I could have earned several more, but the important thing was the knowledge.  I have read a lot of articles in publications over the years about one designation vs another and which is better. I even had one person call me and said if I did not have a certain designation, they would not work with me. I did not try to convince them otherwise.

This is my opinion. It is not the degree alone that makes a good adviser. It is not experience alone that makes a good adviser. It is not knowledge alone that makes a good adviser. It is a combination of all these plus a humble attitude and a listening ear. You get to choose your adviser. Make sure you can have an honest open conversation with that person.




Have things changed for you — new home, new phone number or email, new child, family changes?  Do you need to change your beneficiaries? Please take a moment and email   We may simply need to update our files, but certain types of information should also be reported to the companies who hold your investments. Let us help you stay up-to-date!  If you are new to this mailing, we welcome you!  If you don’t wish to receive it, you can email the address above to opt out.  

We are proud to announce that Kathi Dunlap and Orrie Augsburger passed their Series 66 licensure exam in August. They both now serve as registered assistants for Faith Investment Services.

Gary has over 30 years’ experience in financial services. One of his designations is Chartered Financial Consultant. This    designation is awarded by the American College of Financial Services. The ChFC may be lesser known to the general public than the CFP due to lack of marketing but is well understood in the industry. It stands as a distinguished certification in financial planning. An advisor with either designation can certainly give thorough advice. One difference between the two   is the process of becoming certified. The education portion for a ChFC is lengthier -- comprised of nine college-level courses (used to be 13 when Gary was certified) -- and is a little broader in scope than the CFP courses. Courses focus on financial planning, covering topics like investing, taxation, insurance, and retirement planning. Unlike the CFP, there is no comprehensive exam at the end. Instead, you take a final exam at the end of each course. To enroll in the program, you must have at least three years’ experience in the finance industry. Having a degree in finance or business will help you in the courses and can count as one of your years of experience. You must subscribe to a professional pledge and a code of ethics. These high  standards are there to promote integrity so one is prepared to become a financial adviser and give knowledgeable and helpful advice that suits your clients’ needs.


 We will cover the same basic information each evening so choose the night that is best for you. No cost or commitment except your RSVP. We look forward to meeting you there!




Faith Investment Services is pleased to offer investment analysis for your 401k or 403b. What exactly does this mean?  Investment analysis is:

The ability to screen your 401k or 403b to more closely align your investment with your values. Companies are required to offer a “universe of funds” but not all of the funds may be invested according to your values. It’s your hard-earned money and you should be able to control what you are supporting with that investment.

The ability to have an investment adviser look at your account on at least a quarterly basis to be sure that you are in funds that are performing according to your risk tolerance and retirement objectives. If there are adjustments that need to be made, we can work with you to log into your retirement account and make the appropriate adjustments. Essentially, we are working for you to watch over your retirement account.

Regular review to maximize how much you contribute to your retirement plan and/or Roth or Traditional IRA.

Let’s face it. Plan advisers who serve your company’s plan are hired by the company and, while they have fiduciary responsibility to oversee the plan, they aren’t necessarily hired to watch over your individual portion with any active interest. Wouldn’t it be nice to have someone in your court, helping you accomplish your wishes for your retirement funds?  Contact us today and ask how to begin!  Email or call 419-358-4207.




Faith Investment Services partners with Beacon Wealth Management, a fiduciary Investment Manager, to offer turnkey 401k plans with third-party administration included. These 401k plans are reasonably priced and can offer Biblically Responsible options (or not—according to your wishes.)  As a steward of your business, you have a moral responsibility to do well with your investments and offer good options for your employees. Wouldn’t it be worth it to compare your existing plan with a Kingdom(k) plan?

To get a no-obligation comparison (of cost, performance, simplicity, and more), contact our office for details. We can give you a brief checklist of information we would need in order to provide a detailed comparison. Email or call today. We know that it is easy to stay “status quo” but we would encourage you to invest 10-15 minutes of time to learn about your options. It could be that aligning your 401k with Biblical values is easier (and less expensive) than what you are currently doing. Wouldn’t that be worth the effort?!

**If you are just starting to consider offering a plan to your employees, we can help you too. We’d be glad to have a conversation with you about the process.

Churches, the same service is available for your 403b plans. Talk to us about your options!