Slideshow Olympic Athletes Turned Financial Advisors

  • August 08 2012, 1:16pm EDT
8 Images Total

Olympic Athletes Turned Financial Advisors

The Olympic Games have been a training ground for some into a second career as a financial advisor. On Wall Street caught up with several of those advisors as this year's games heat up in London. Take a look at who they are, the challenges they faced as athletes, and how that prepared them for their advisory careers.

Ted Murphy, left, with his rowing partner Sebastian Bea, won a silver medal at the 2000 Summer Olympics in Sydney.

Today, Murphy is a Merrill Lynch wealth advisor based in Mill Valley, Calif.

Murphy ultimately used coming in fifth in a rowing event at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta as motivation to try again.

"I knew that if we had had the right performance on the right day in the Atlanta Olympics, we would have won a medal, and that I was capable of the right performance on the right day," Murphy says.

Murphy's rowing career that spanned more than ten years also taught him some lessons he now applies to his advisory career.

"What happens today gives me an ability to learn for tomorrow and really truly believing that every day is an opportunity to get better, to get stronger, to get faster, to get smarter," Murphy says.

Content Continues Below

Eric Flaim speed skated his way to two silver medals over the course of four winter Olympic games during his athletic career.

Leaving his Massachusetts home at 14-years-old to train in Wisconsin was not always easy, Flaim remembers of his early years in the sport.

"The first year I got out there I got creamed. I was so bad I think I only beat one person," Flaim remembers.

Today Flaim is an Ameriprise advisor with Flaim, Chace & Associates based in Portsmouth, N.H.

Flaim worked his way to Olympic wins in 1988 in Calgary and in 1994 in Lillehammer, Norway by thinking positively, which also helps him as an advisor today.

"You realized how much mentally what you say to yourself becomes what happens to you in life," Flaim says. "It really forces you to be positive. And in this business, what we do, we always should be feeling it's our job to be positive."

David Emma competed as part of the U.S. hockey team in the 1992 Winter Olympics in Albertville, France.

Playing in the Olympic games was unlike any other competition in Emma's 10-year hockey career, he says.

"When you play as a professional, there's certain people who root for the New Jersey Devils, and some people that like the Flyers and some people that like the Rangers. But when you're in the Olympics, you have everybody in the United States rooting for you," Emma says.

Content Continues Below

Today Emma is a HighTower advisor with Masterson, Emma & Associates based in Naples, Fla.

Emma says that the discipline and preparation that hockey taught him helps him today.

"I never come into this office thinking that there's a bad day," Emma says. "Even when you've had a bad game or an off day, you know you need to show up the next day and forget about it and start over."

John Stollmeyer took part in the 1988 Summer Olympics in Seoul, South Korea, as part of the U.S. soccer team.

"It's one of those things that as you get older and look back on it, it's more important," Stollmeyer says today of his Olympic memories.

Today Stollmeyer is a Raymond James advisor based in Indianapolis.

The rigorous practice Stollmeyer went through in soccer is similar to the preparation it takes for him to be a successful advisor today, he says.

"When you're training as an athlete, there's a lot of monotonous running, kind of what I call lonely time, where you're on your own," Stollmeyer says. "It's very similar in this business [where] you have to do a lot of little things that don't seem to get a big bump right away, but over time that's when everything starts clicking."