Financial Architects - October 2019



A PERFECT MATCH CEO Jake Heikkinen on Financial Architects

It’s rare to find a partner who matches your values perfectly, especially in the business world. That’s why I’m proud to work alongside Financial Architects Inc. (FAI). As the CEO of Strive Financial, a local insurance brokerage, I’ve helped the Architects provide insurance products that help their clients build and protect their wealth for the past seven years. This long-standing relationship

family to find a product that fit their needs and goals, my colleagues and I were expected to fit households into “cookie cutter” plans. I knew there had to be a better, more personable way to help people. For context, both my father and grandfather were lawyers. They dedicated their lives to representing people in need and did their best to pass those values down to me. While

Right away, it seemed like a match that was almost too good to be true. Not only were we both independent Michigan companies but we also had a similar origin story. Hearing about Ken Grace’s own battles against large, impersonal financial firms sounded all too familiar. But the best thing of all is that our values were aligned. What made working with FAI so easy was understanding their core philosophy. Just like Strive Financial, they believe in protecting our clients from risk while building toward their financial goals. This mindset keeps their architects squarely focused on the actual needs of each family they work with. Finding a company that shared my client-first mindset was a huge weight off my shoulders and allowed me to finally do the work I believe in. It’s been an amazing seven years working alongside FAI. I can’t wait to see how Chris and Patrick elevate their firm to new heights. Having squared off against Pat once or twice in the hockey rink, I know their competition has their work cut out for them.

Jake Heikkinen

began because I recognized FAI had an attribute you don’t find often in either of our industries: integrity. I had to learn this the hard way when I was younger. Directly after graduating with a degree in economics from the University of Michigan, I joined a big- name insurance company. It was the year 2000, and I was ready to change people’s lives for the better. I couldn’t wait to use my education to help families find true financial security. However, that’s not what my employers had in mind. I discovered that working for a “big box” firm had a major drawback: They were too large to treat any one client as an individual. Rather than working with each

I was more interested in economics than the law, I still wanted to follow my forefathers’ example. I thought insurance would be a way to do just that, but the longer I worked at this major company, the more I realized I needed to start an independent agency. So, long story short, I founded Strive Financial. Of course, any insurance agency still needs a partnership with a financial services company, and at first, I signed on with, you guessed it, another big-name firm. It soon became clear that this giant corporation was treating my agency as just another branch of employees, without looking out for the people we were trying to serve. That’s when I found FAI.

–Jake Heikkinen



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