By the time he was 8, Bob Schwarz already was learning how to deal in the stock market world.
His mother taught him about the profession little by little and all the intricacies of it. The lessons he learned at a young age were sinking in, and frankly, he enjoyed it.
“To be quite honest, I was hooked on it and have been ever since,” Schwarz said.
Schwarz recently celebrated 40 years of being a financial adviser in Bob Schwarz Financial. Working in the industry, helping people with their money and financial needs has been what Schwarz always has enjoyed. At 66, he hopes to be doing it for years to come. His home office is in Silver Lake.
On Tuesday and Thursday in the Pioneer Room of the Fort Hays State University Memorial Union, Schwarz will host a free tax seminar for anyone interested. Along with him in the seminar will be insurance specialist Cortney Dale, who works with Schwarz, and FHSU accounting professor and CPA Misty Schartz. The Tuesday session will be at 6:30 p.m., and on Thursday it will be at 8 p.m.
“We cover the whole state between us,” said Dale, who has worked for Schwarz since August 2015 and runs the business’ office at 105 E. 27th, Ste. A. “We’re not prohibited to just the Hays and Silver Lake areas.
“I am learning a lot from Bob. For all practical purposes, I’m still just starting out.”
Before joining Schwarz’s business, Dale worked for a company with independent financial advisers. She has in the industry for seven years. Dale is a native of Plainville and now lives in Hays.
Schwarz always had just his office in Silver Lake until meeting Dale at a training event in 2015 and then hiring her. Schwarz Financial will move out of its Hays location and into Victoria, where it recently purchased two buildings in downtown. A scheduled ribbon cutting is set for April 7.
“For so many years before Cortney and I got together, we felt like we could work throughout Kansas from just one spot,” Schwarz said. “When we met Cortney, it became apparent we need a presence in Hays besides just having her located there.
“The reason we bought in Victoria is the same reason I live in Silver Lake instead of Topeka. I’m a small-town kid that has been lucky enough to live his life the way he wanted to. So when we looked for office, we looked in Ellis and a building in Schoenchen. We looked at buildings in Victoria in order to kind of fulfill my personal desire to help small towns stay vibrant — stay alive, so to speak.”
A Wichita State University graduate, Schwarz has chosen to live in a small town, like the one he grew up in — Onaga. His college years were the only time he ever lived in a city. Other than working for Caterpillar Corp., as a sales rep in construction for four years after college, Schwarz has worked in the business he believes he always was meant to. It never has gotten redundant or too tiring for him.
As long as he has believed he’s been able to assist people in financial help, that has been motivation enough for him.
Two years ago, Schwarz started doing a radio show. He and Dale both do it now. Schwarz said he believes it has given them another avenue in helping people. The show is on Saturday mornings on KFRM 550 AM in Salina and KKOY in Iola.
“The reason we have the radio show is I have felt for years that Kansans are underserved in my industry,” Schwarz said. “I almost feel like I’m on a mission to offer a level playing field and clarity to Kansans who want to invest and look into retirement. I’m invested in it. I’m kind of passionate about it.
“I wish we would have started the radio show years ago.”
The Schwarz firm works with people in many areas of financial issues. One of their newest services is Medicaid.
“What we’re constantly always trying to do is add on services,” Dale said. “We don’t want to be just somebody’s financial advisor they just talk to once a year.
“We want to help them with all their decisions including property and casualty insurance. We offer home and auto insurance. Boat, RV, commercial, any kind of insurance, I even sell crop. Adding on Medicaid has really been good. What we’re really happy about is helping people with their Medicare decisions. Medicare is a busy place.”