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Structure for Success: Q&A with Ascent President John Zimmerman

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Managing money is a daunting task for most people. But managing it over generations? That’s a challenge Ascent Private Capital Management of U.S. Bank helps families face proactively. John Zimmerman, president of Ascent, leads a dedicated team of experts who work closely with families of significant wealth, carefully crafting long-term plans to align the family’s resources around shared values and goals. Read on for John’s insights into how Ascent helps families grow financially, power a shared vision and seamlessly transition wealth from one generation to the next.

Q: As many as 70 percent of generational wealth transfers fail, in most cases not because of tax or investment problems but because of lack of communication, trust, and preparation between and among family members. How does Ascent approach these complex issues?

A: Ascent’s three-pillar foundation, which includes wealth sustainability services, investment consulting & specialized fiduciary services, and private banking, allows our team to address the strategic and tactical dimensions of generational wealth. In essence, we meet families where they are. Our approach to the “softer” issues, which we call wealth sustainability is what I feel really differentiates Ascent. We focus on growing and sustaining wealth, education, succession, governance, and preparation of the next generation with highly specialized staff who have years of experience in this space. Ascent is designed to help families succeed across generations.

Q: Every family must be incredibly unique, both in profile and in aspirations. In what ways does Ascent address each engagement?

A: We deliver our work through an integrated, holistic strategy. The real value of Ascent is in how we curate our services to develop a proactive approach that is responsive to each family’s unique needs. For example, we may combine CFO services, balance sheet management, investment consulting, banking, estate planning and tax planning to maximize a family’s opportunity for long-term success.

     
      The real value of Ascent is in how we curate our services to develop a proactive approach that is responsive to each family’s unique needs.        
     


Q: What does long-term success look like?

A: For our families, success is based on their goals. This often includes creating a strong family foundation, preserving their wealth, and empowering them to see the impact of their wealth during their lifetime. When the next generation is prepared to be good stewards of the family wealth, as defined by a combination of the family’s shared values and goals, that’s the truly rewarding piece of our work.

Q: You mentioned that Ascent has a highly-specialized team with years of experience working with families of significant wealth. What inspires you most about your team, and what is important to you in your role as President?

A: I work with some of the best professionals in the industry - every individual is highly talented. Our team thoroughly understands the dynamics of ultra-high net worth families, and leads the industry through speaking at conferences, hosting educational webinars, and publishing thought leadership. And, as a boutique firm backed by U.S. Bank, Ascent is in a position where our team has access to incredible resources. It is very important to me that I support each team member by building a culture of collaboration and empowerment.

Q: From your perspective, what excites you most about Ascent and your work?

A: Our team is incredibly invested in our work because we get to know each family. It is an honor to be a trusted member of a client’s team. When a family aligns on their mission, vision, and goals to shape a multigenerational legacy they are empowered to make a significant impact. It is very exciting to see families thrive and go further than even they thought possible — it inspires all we do.


Investment products and services are:
NOT A DEPOSIT • NOT FDIC INSURED • MAY LOSE VALUE • NOT BANK GUARANTEED • NOT INSURED BY ANY FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AGENCY

U.S. Bank and its representatives do not provide tax or legal advice. Each individual’s tax and financial situation is unique. You should consult your tax and/or legal advisor for advice and information concerning your particular situation.

Wealth Sustainability services are not fiduciary in nature and Ascent serves in a non-fiduciary role when providing these services. Wealth Sustainability services may include strategic wealth coaching services in order to facilitate your self-assessment of wealth sustainability issues. Ascent does not engage in the practice of psychology

© 2019 U.S. Bank 19-180504 (5/19)

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Investment products and services are:
Not a Deposit   •   Not FDIC Insured   •   May Lose Value   •   Not Bank Guaranteed   •   Not Insured by any Federal Government Agency

 
 

Equal Housing Lender Equal Housing Lender. Credit products are offered by U.S. Bank National Association and subject to normal credit approval. Deposit products offered by U.S. Bank National Association. Member FDIC.

U.S. Bank and its representatives do not provide tax or legal advice. Your tax and financial situation is unique. You should consult your tax and/or legal advisor for advice and information concerning your particular situation.

Wealth Sustainability services are not fiduciary in nature, and Ascent serves in a non-fiduciary role when providing these services. Wealth Sustainability services may include strategic wealth coaching services in order to facilitate your self-assessment of wealth sustainability issues. Ascent does not engage in the practice of psychology.