Robert W. Baird & Co. has hired R. Parker Griffith from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney to manage its Nashville wealth management office and serve as financial advisor.

Griffith replaces Fred McLaughlin, who continues to serve as a financial advisor in Nashville following 11 years as a branch manager there.

Griffith has been registered with Baird since Sept. 11, according to his public registration records with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. He joins the firm from Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and Citigroup, where he served as both a branch manager and financial advisor. Griffith joined Citigroup in 2002 from the Robinson-Humphrey Co. in Nashville, where he first became a financial advisor in 1991.

"Parker [Griffith] is just so well known in the Nashville community," Baird Private Wealth Management Group Regional Director Bill Johnson said in an interview on Tuesday. "He's been a successful [financial advisor] and branch manager in that market for a couple of decades."

The move also gives McLaughlin the opportunity to focus on his "ever growing book" of clients, Johnson said.

Baird is always looking for new talent, said Johnson, who heads the firm's Eastern region from Portland, Maine, to Naples, Fla. The firm recently added five advisors from firms including Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and J.P. Morgan to its offices in California, Oregon and Texas.

As a privately-held, employee-owned firm, Baird offers a unique and stable structure for advisors that gave the firm strength during the financial crisis, according to Johnson. Baird currently has 74 offices in 25 states. Half of its associates are now shareholders in the firm.

"It starts with the client and a real passion for making sure we do the best job that we can for our clients," Johnson said. "Part of that story is running a business where the employees and our clients know it's a financially strong and stable business."

Also joining Baird with Griffith is Karen Colavecchio, who serves as the Nashville branch administrative office manager.

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