Scott Blake, MBA, is dedicated to protecting young professionals, small business owners, and families through holistic financial planning and political advocacy.
Learning From the Best
After earning his MBA from Capital University, Blake transitioned from politics to financial services. He founded Blake Wealth Partners with Northwestern Mutual in 2016 and, since then, has learned from some of the top producers in the country. One of Blake’s first mentors was Bob Roach, CLU, ChFC, a 54-year veteran of Northwestern Mutual and the recipient of NAIFA’s inaugural Terry Headley Lifetime Defender Award. Roach introduced Blake to NAIFA, where he met another mentor who helped shape his career—NAIFA-Columbus Past President Patrick Cannon. In 2020, Blake joined the NAIFA-Columbus Board of Directors at his suggestion. Now, Blake is taking the lead as NAIFA-Columbus President and continuing in his role as the chapter’s Vice President of Advocacy.
Building Lasting Relationships
Blake describes his agency as “modern wealth management for the motivated.” His clients are aspirational millennials who are looking at the long term—not just planning for retirement, but actively working toward building generational wealth and planning for charitable giving.
When Blake begins working with a new client, he focuses on building a strong foundation. From there, they can craft a plan to put them on track to achieve their goals. One of the most fulfilling experiences of his career, Blake says, is seeing the plans he put in place with clients before the COVID-19 pandemic play out as planned. His clients have peace of mind knowing that the mechanisms they have in place will help them weather an unpredictable economic environment.
The best part of his job, says Blake, are the daily interactions he gets to have with his clients. No two days are the same and helping people plan for the future energizes him. "I really believe in customer service and client experience,” he begins. “It has to be more than a transaction—it has to be a relationship.”
Blake credits his success not only to the relationships he builds with clients but also to his determination and dedication. During his college swimming career, he learned how to combine competitiveness and discipline. In the insurance and financial services industry, those skills have helped shape his mindset as a business owner. “If you are growing your practice, you're no longer selling a product or selling an investment tool—you're building a business,” he says.
The Power of Political Advocacy
Blake is a passionate supporter of NAIFA’s political advocacy. Advocacy is not just in the best interest of Main Street Americans, he says, but also the best interest of agents’ and advisors’ businesses and the industry as a whole. The decisions made by legislators have a direct impact on financial professionals’ ability to make a living while giving their clients the best possible service. “One of the areas of our economy that is being lost in the political spectrum at the federal and state level is who's looking out for the small business owner. NAIFA is the protection mechanism of small business owners in our line of work,” says Blake, adding that financial professionals must decide between action and apathy.
Blake believes that giving back to his community is an essential part of being a successful advisor and that being involved is more than just charitable giving—it’s also volunteering time. Blake works closely with the Association of Ohio Commodores, the International Visitors Council, and Open Door Columbus. “If clients are going to give you their trust in their finances to give them advice, they want to know that you put something else above the almighty dollar,” he says. “If I’m talking to clients about living a life bigger than themselves, I have to walk the walk.”
Looking to the Future
One of Blake’s goals is to attract younger advisors to NAIFA. He’s already a mentor to several young professionals, and he shares with them the importance of political advocacy and insights into building a practice with a forward-looking approach.
In the coming years, Blake plans to grow his practice, attract top talent, and continue having a national impact while spending more time with clients in person. He plans to maintain close relationships, taking them from the day they become a client to the day they retire and beyond.