The IPA TeamAbout Us
Our exceptional team is the lifeblood of our business. We take the time to explain how financial advisors are compensated and provide the pros and cons in language that you can understand, so you can make the best decision for you and your family. Our desire is to work with our clients through the years in helping them achieve their financial goals. We live by our four core values of Compassion, Integrity, Independence, and Commitment.
Caring about the dreams and goals of those we serve.
Honesty, fairness and ethics are the foundation of our firm.
Using our years of experience to provide objective, unbiased advice – guided by faith.
We are dedicated to the success of our client’s financial journey.
Value to You
Our Mission is to partner with our clients on their lifelong financial journey, providing honest and objective advice. We dedicate ourselves to educate, guide and serve as our clients strive for financial success and peace of mind.
A Team of Professionals
Our Team Members
Pat Paxton, Managing Director & Financial Planner
Pat Paxton has over 30 years of professional experience in the Financial Services Industry. After gaining 18 years of experience in all aspects of Financial Planning, Pat established Investment Planning Advisors in 2003. He has successfully built a thriving practice and a team of professionals to provide comprehensive Wealth Management & Financial Planning advice to families of Northern Georgia.
As a fiduciary, Pat does provide his clients with independent and objective advice as a fee based wealth manager and financial advisor. Pat does have an established client base where most of his high net worth clients are either retired or preparing for their retirement. As a result, Pat’s clients are primarily concerned with retirement planning and more specifically Retirement Income planning after they retire. Pat also works on an hourly or on flat fee basis for those who may need general consultation, portfolio evaluation or overall financial planning. Pat has been a SmartVestor Pro for the Dave Ramsey show since 2003 for Investments and Long Term Care. For the past three years(2015-2017) Pat has earned the title of “Best of Forsyth” for Financial Planning.
Pat and his wife Wendy have been happily married for over 26 years.Pat and Wendy are both active in various civic organizations. Pat is a member of Rotary, The Knights of Columbus, and a graduate of Leadership Forsyth Class of 2008 and a member of the Cumming Forsyth Chamber. He has recently joined the Stewardship Committee for his parish: St. Brendan the Navigator.
He is a member FINRA holds seven securities and insurance registrations.
Wendy Paxton, Operations Manager
After a successful career in Property Management for twenty years, Wendy joined Investment Planning Advisors in 2008 as the Operations Manager.
Wendy manages the Client Services division for IPA. She is often the first voice you will hear when in contact with us. She provides the training and back office support for the staff and all of the Financial Advisors. Wendy also provides vital support for the Dave Ramsey program for her husband, Pat Paxton, who has been endorsed by Dave Ramsey since 2003. She facilitates Financial Peace University for her church at St. Brendan the Navigator in Cumming, GA.
Wendy has always been active in the community. She has been on the board for her neighborhood Homeowners association. She is a graduate of the 2013 Leadership Forsyth class and is serving on the Board of Directors for the 2016-2019 term. Additionally, she is serving on the Membership Advisory Board for the Cumming Forsyth Chamber of Commerce.
Ken Bellavance, Financial Planner
Ken has a clear and natural passion for financial planning. He recognizes an individual’s values, personal experiences, and life goals are vital to implementing the optimal plan. Ken provides a thoughtful and thorough approach to planning and places a major emphasis on maintaining great client relationships through consistent communication. Ken’s process of financial planning focuses on forming a true partnership with clients to help them reach their financial goals. Every individual brings a unique set of goals and circumstances and the optimal plan only develops if both parties work together.
Ken utilizes the latest technology to help the investors set-up, track, and maintain their investment portfolio. His financial plans weigh the technical aspects of planning along with the behavioral elements. The end result is a modern and efficient financial plan coupled with ongoing support and guidance.
Ken takes pride in being a Dave Ramsey SmartVestor Pro Associate by placing a special emphasis on investor education. A series of articles and videos can found on our website. The article and video series attempt to explain current events and investing fundamentals in plain language. Check out the most recent article by visiting the Client Resources tab.
Ken studied Finance at the University of North Georgia as a student/athlete. Prior to graduation from the Mike Cottrell School of Business, he received the Excellence in Finance award for his academic efforts within the field. After four years of college baseball, Ken ended his playing days as a Capitol One Academic All-American.
Ken and his wife, Danielle live in Cumming, GA with their daughters Brynn and Emory. They take full advantage of the beautiful North Georgia mountains by kayaking, hiking, and fishing. Originally from Stone Mountain, GA, Ken is a Georgia Bulldawg, Atlanta Braves, and Atlanta Falcons fan.
Andrew Castleberry, CFP®, Financial Planner
Andrew is very passionate about partnering with his clients and guiding them on their financial journey. He enjoys the opportunity to review his client’s full financial picture, so he can develop a complete financial plan. Andrew partners with clients to help his clients determine and achieve their goals as efficiently, effectively and simply as possible. He pride himself on always acting with complete integrity and as a trusted partner and fiduciary. As a Certified Financial Planner® he is held to the highest fiduciary standard of care, and puts his client needs above all else.
Andrew has experience with two other brokerage firms working in both retirement and tax planning as well as the active trading side of the industry. Using his experience, he take’s pride in providing efficient and quality service to all clients. Additionally, he feels that educating his client’s on all aspects of their financial plan is key to their success.
Kelsey Fredriksson, Client Service
Kelsey joined our team in 2018. She is assisting Ken Bellavance with scheduling, client communications, and new client on-boarding. She has multiple years of experience in front and back office operations within the healthcare field.
Kelsey is exceptionally organized and takes pride in ensuring each client has a productive and enjoyable experience at IPA.
Kelsey is a graduate from North Georgia College and State University with a Bachelors degree in Criminal Justice. She played soccer while at North Georgia, earning multiple athletic and academic honors along the way. She and her husband, Alan, live in Braselton with their sons Jase and Eli.
Tanna Lesch, Paraplanner
Tanna Lesch is the Paraplanner at IPA. As a paraplanner she will be analyzing client’s needs, attending client meetings to take notes and follow up on administrative tasks, and prepare financial reports. Tanna takes pride in knowing that the work that she does behind the scenes is making the client’s life easier and more organized.
Tanna graduated from Iowa State University with a bachelor’s degree in Event Management and General Business. Since her time at Iowa State, she has worked in the Transportation Industry and IT industry as a digital marketer where she was able to increase her skills and abilities in multitasking, problem solving and communications.
Tanna and her husband Tyler reside in Cumming and in their free time they enjoy biking, hiking, and cheering on the Chiefs on football Sundays!
Carolyn Flournoy, CFP®, Financial Planner
Carolyn joined our team in 2022 and has practiced financial planning for over 10 years. As a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner, she provides planning and investment services to clients, and has a broad base of knowledge in the areas of retirement, Social Security, and elder care. Carolyn enjoys getting to know her clients and helping them build a plan so that they can achieve their financial goals.
Carolyn is a graduate of Agnes Scott College. Before coming to Investment Planning Advisors, she worked for a couple of financial planning firms in Atlanta. She is excited to be back in her hometown of Cumming.
Carol Taylor, Client Service Associate
Carol joined IPA in 2022. She will be working closely with clients on scheduling, account paperwork and meeting preparation. Carol is detail oriented and organized with over 10 years customer service experience.
Carol graduated from Columbus State University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration. She has worked in the banking & financial industry, stock plan administration and Health FSA.
Carol and family live in Cumming.
Alison joined our team in 2022. She is assisting Pat Paxton with day-to-day activities such as meeting arrangements, account paperwork and new client set up.
Alison’s background is in Travel Planning and Customer Relations. She enjoys spending time with her family, traveling and being outdoors.
Alison is a Cumming resident along with her husband, 3 teenagers, two dogs and a cat.
Become a Part of the IPA Family
Join Our Team
If you are interested in starting a career in the financial services, our firm is growing and is committed to mentoring and training the right people. We have established a mentoring program that can assist you in building your business. We will not churn you out the way the larger financial service organizations have been known to do.
If you are looking for a team to join and you have an established practice, we may be able to help. Our goal is to assist experienced advisors in transitioning their business to be part of our firm. If you are passionate about helping people and have the heart of a teacher, we would love to talk to you.