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Fortney looks back on time with Edward Jones

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ABOVE, OPEN HOUSE:Cindy celebrated her retirement with an open house.
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RIGHT, CINDY:Cindy is excited to spend more time with her husband Phil and family in retirement.

by Grace Hooley - ghooley@chronicle-tribune.com

Financial advisor Cindy Fortney recently retired from Edward Jones Investment in Marion.

Fortney worked for the company for 16 years, but before this, she worked in the banking industry for 22 years. She was introduced to Edward Jones by now-retired financial advisor Larry French in 2002, and he thought she had the qualities needed to be a financial advisor. She said she’s forever grateful to him, and she considers starting with Edward Jones a leap of faith in her career.

“After working in the financial industry for 22 years, I knew my strengths were working with people one-on-one, and I believe God placed me where I could use my talents to serve others best,” Fortney said.

Assistant Toni Rodriquez worked for Fortney for four years and said he’s thankful she took a chance on him because he had no experience in the industry. The wisdom and experience he’s learned working with Fortney was extremely valuable to him.

“Cindy always went above and beyond for her clients, but she also took great care of everyone she worked with. She was and still is a mentor to many,” Rodriquez said.

Financial advisor and Fortney’s son Bobby Browder noted that his mother built her career from scratch, starting out as a teller at the bank, going back to school to get her degree as an adult and becoming a loan officer. He said she always pushed herself to do more, and so, she built an extremely successful business helping families in the community.

She was the first female financial advisor in the county with Edward Jones, but she said the group of male advisors were very supportive in her endeavors.

“We are also fortunate to have another bright and talented female, Cory Matchette Korporal, who joined us a few years ago here in Grant County as well,” Fortney said.

According to Fortney, there have been many changes in the industry during her time as a financial advisor. These were mostly technological.

Technology has allowed advisors better avenues to serve the clients through more choices and ease of doing business. Fortney said new regulations can sometimes be a headache, but she and her colleagues at Edward Jones always seemed to turn the headaches of new regulations into opportunities to serve the clients better.

One of the biggest changes was the increase in women in the firm, including managing partner Penny Pennington, Fortney said. This was after the recent retirement of managing partner Jim Weddle. Pennington has been with the firm for more than 20 years, and she was the first female managing partner.

“Awesome changes have taken place in Edward Jones’ technology that has allowed us to serve clients more broadly and efficiently while focusing on what is most important to each individual client,” Fortney said. “Edward Jones has also made a concerted effort to recruit a more diverse workforce of women and minorities.”

Fortney has also been involved with Family Service Society, Gilead Ministries, United Way, Grant County Chamber of Commerce, Rotary and other organizations over the years.

She said she looks forward to spending time with her husband and her family and friends. She also said she has projects and travel ideas that she would like to tap into as well.

“My time with Edward Jones has been a remarkable journey filled with wonderful experiences and opportunities for helping others,” Fortney said. “Many thanks to my clients and friends for allowing me to serve them. It has been an honor and a privilege. Thank you to my husband, Phil, who has been my rock and my cheerleader. Thank you to my son Bobby who has continued the legacy for our family as a financial advisor with Edward Jones.”