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Steward Partners parts ways with 2 execs as firm revs up growth engine

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Steward Partners has parted ways with two top executives as the firm pursues big expansion targets.

The independent firm, which is affiliated with Raymond James, has made its mark by recruiting a slew of advisors since its founding by former wirehouse managers in 2013. It now fields more than 100 advisors operating from 21 offices.

And Steward Partners has both plans and resources to add more.

Last year, private equity firm Cynosure Group took a minority stake in the indie firm, which said at the time it would use the funds to fuel “ambitious growth as well as provide liquidity for partners.”

In recent months, Steward Partners unveiled a new 1099 advisor affiliation option; added former Morgan Stanley executive Doug Kentfield as head of wealth management; named Divisional President Jeffrey Gonyo as head of recruiting, a newly created position; and it is working with external recruiters to help bring in more advisors.

But even as the firm strives to add more talent, it parted ways with Divisional Presidents James Connors and Tim Sheridan. Connors oversaw operations in New England while Sheridan was responsible for the New York metropolitan area.

Both men were previously affiliated with Wells Fargo before moving to Steward Partners. Connors joined the independent firm in 2016 after working at Wells Fargo for most of his three decades in the business. Sheridan joined Steward Partners in 2018, replacing another ex-Wells Fargo manager who held the same position.

Neither executive responded to requests for comment.

A spokesman for Steward Partners confirmed Connors and Sheridan are no longer with the company, and declined to comment further. CityWire first reported on the departures.

Last year, Steward Partners experienced particularly strong growth in Texas where it added new branches in Austin and Dallas. The firm also opened new locations in Portland, Maine and in Hendersonville, North Carolina.

To fill its now-vacant positions, Steward Partners is seeking candidates who will emphasize advisor recruiting. Divisional presidents will “drive revenue through recruiting and organic growth, focus on meeting profit objectives and effectively manage the business from a risk and compliance perspective,” the company says in an online job posting.

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