Erica LyallCFP®, CDFA®
Senior Planning Associate
What do you value most in your client relationships?
In my client relationships, what I value most is the opportunity to get to know them and to understand what is most important to them. Having this understanding allows us to work together to create a plan and implement the details to help achieve their goals while always keeping the big picture front of mind.
What’s a particularly rewarding example of how you helped to create impact for a client?
I was grateful to have had the knowledge and experience to help my mom with her finances when she needed it the most. My dad had always handled the finances in our home and my mom was unfamiliar with investments, taxes, etc. During my parents’ divorce and particularly afterward, she had so many questions and I was so frustrated by the lack of guidance she was getting. She needed someone to walk through the process with her and all of the steps it would take to establish her “new financial life” as a divorcee. We worked through setting up accounts in her name, making sure the allocations met her needs, and visited an estate attorney to create new documents that fulfilled her wishes. Considering her own needs rather than those of a married couple were new considerations for her and the process took a lot of time, patience and understanding. I was grateful to have been able to work with her and guide her, and it made me realize that not everyone will have someone knowledgeable and patient to lean on. I now hope to be that person for many people experiencing life transitions that need not just financial assistance but empathy and patience along the way to help them feel confident in their new financial future.
What do you enjoy most about working at Modera?
I enjoy the people I work with at Modera and the approach we take to working with clients. Everyone at Modera wants to do what is in the best interest of the client. We are always working together toward that goal, and it shows. My teammates are knowledgeable and conscientious, as well as friendly and willing to help. It is not a competition; we are all in this together for a common cause, which makes it a pleasant environment to work in every day.
How do you do good in your community?
I have always had a heart for philanthropy and spent a few years of my career working for nonprofits. My main interests have been animal-based charities as I have 3 cats and 2 dogs. I have actually told my son that we are not allowed inside anywhere with animals for adoption or we will inevitably bring one home with us! Another volunteer interest I have is around women’s issues. At a very young age I, along with my mother and sister, started collecting donations for the local women’s shelter. Finally, I am passionate about education and healthcare. My father was the first in his family to graduate from college and then from medical school so I know the difference a scholarship can make not just for the person receiving it but also for generations to come. I would love to do women’s workshops in financial literacy to empower those around me with the knowledge to build a strong financial base for themselves and their families.