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Speaking

David has over 25 years of insights and observations working with high net worth individuals wealth transfers and legacy.

Much of his writing and speaking is based on these observations and this work.
A highly sought after speaker, he has spoken on the Ted stage as well as such groups as the Million Dollar Roundtable, Q Commons, the Purposeful Planning Institute, the Institute of Family Governance, and the Investment and Wealth Institute. 

Watch speeches in the blog:

Reviews From Prior Audiences

"I am a highly cynical and critical, normally reserved old man. And so, I blush when writing this.
Listening to David may have been the most important hour I’ve spent in some time."
"Bring him back, excellent content and presentation."
 

Summary of current presentations:

The Gift of Lift:  Harnessing the Power of Stewardship to Elevate the World 

Professional Advisors, Individuals, Families, Family Offices
Audience:

We live in a world that tells us how to live, what matters (and what doesn’t), and how to get what it says we want.  These impersonal, external forces push us around and leave us off-balance, confused, and fatigued.  Like actors following a script we didn’t write, we find ourselves uncertain of where we have ended up, much less where we want to go, and asking ourselves, “What am I supposed to do next?”  This can be especially acute among the higher net worth, who struggle to bring meaning and purpose to their wealth.  Among us, however, are those who live differently.  Held steady by the pull of purpose that comes from the gravitational force of something far bigger than themselves, they amplify that draw with their own deep personal engagement.  These women and men live in an upward spiral of clarity, vision and balance that guides their lives and their wealth, allowing them to make lasting impacts in the World.  More than mere consumers, dreamers or even owners, these people have found the secret to a life lived as…a Steward.  This presentation reviews commons myths about money and wealth that too often undermine effective wealth transfer.  After exposing these myths, the presentation then outlines the mindset, characteristics, and traits of Stewards and how they think and act in fundamentally different ways and it ends with practical ways to create a Steward mentality for yourself, your family, and the organizations of which you are a part.

Adapt, Change or Disappear  

Professional Advisors
Audience:

For hundreds of years, the views and perspectives on estate planning and inheritance went virtually unchanged. Wealth transfer was primarily done in the form of passing on skills or land which were both transfers of opportunity. Parents saw inheritance as an obligation and they typically sacrificed their own lifestyle and standard of living to transfer additional assets to successive generations. Beginning with the Baby Boomer generation, these views have begun to fundamentally shift. This presentation will review the changing views on wealth in the marketplace, how these changes are affecting planning, and practical recommendations on how to adapt to a changing landscape and meet the goals and desires of a new type of client.

Entrusted:  Building a Legacy That Lasts

Professional Advisors, Individuals, Families, Family Offices
Audience:

Estate planning today is based on three fundamental assumptions. First, a person’s wealth can be summarized on a balance sheet. Second, if transferring some financial wealth is good, then transferring more is better. Third, the first place you should go to do your estate planning is an estate planner. What if all of these fundamental assumptions are actually all fundamentally wrong? The keynote will discuss what is wrong with current estate planning and how it can be fixed. It will discuss the importance of capturing and transferring human capital, how to maximize the benefits of financial wealth transfer, and what can be done with excess financial resources. It will also review the Seven Disciplines that successful families follow to effectively transfer holistic wealth on a multi-generational basis.

The Business of Family 

Professional Advisors, Family Business Owners, Business Owners, Family Offices
Audience:

There are more than 5 million family businesses in the United States. As a general rule, family businesses outperform non-family businesses, are more values driven, and tend to hold on to employees during difficult economic times. That said, family businesses also face unique and difficult challenges. This presentation will focus on how advisors can help family businesses successfully navigate the rough waters that exist at the confluence of business and family. It will also discuss the 6 kinds of family businesses and the practical yet critical steps that should be taken if a family wants to continue a successful multi-generational business into the future.

Purposed and Prepared

Professional Advisors, Individuals, Families, Family Offices
Audience:

As we approach the beginnings of the largest financial wealth transfer in the history of the World, the surveys of the affluent are clear: Undirected and unintentioned wealth is about to be transferred to unprepared and uninformed heirs. The question we face as advisors is this: What, if anything, can be done about it? This keynote will outline the six laws that determine success in any endeavor, the four essential pillars for effective holistic wealth transfer, the three obstacles that every family must overcome, and the one thing that every client wants. 

Riveted: 44 Values that Change the World

General Audiences
Audience:

Rivets are permanent fasteners that fill empty spaces in order to create connections. They literally hold a structure together. Values are the rivets of your legacy. Like rivets, values help to hold us steady, especially in the midst of life’s trials and tribulations, and they can create long lasting connections with others.  In this session, we will share how understanding values is an essential part of building a legacy that lasts and how knowing those values can help cast a vision for an effective estate and financial plan.  We will also spend some time diving deeper into your primary Value type and review The Five Essential Truths of Legacy.

Four-Dimensional Wealth (15 to 30 minute presentation)

General Audiences
Audience:

We live in a four-dimensional world made up of width, length, depth, and time. Just like the world we live in, there are four essential Elements of Value that one generation can pass to the next generation:  Possessions, Core, Words and Story. Unfortunately, when it comes to estate planning and wealth transfer, the focus too often tends to only be on the Value of your Possessions, which is a one-dimensional transfer. This presentation is intended to help people think beyond this myopic view and holistically capture and transfer wealth in all its forms. 

Technical presentations:

Where Purpose Meets Planning

Professional Advisors
Audience:

This presentation starts with a review of the current state of the marketplace and what wealth creators, entrepreneurs, investors and employees are looking for in the 21st Century, particularly when it comes to infusing purpose into businesses, investments, and estate planning.  It then reviews specific strategies that can be used to employ those purposes.  Specifically, the session will review B corporations, purpose trusts, private trust companies, the so-called “Newman’s Only Exception” to private foundation ownership of for-profit businesses, and utilizing program related investments in philanthropy.  

Back to Basis 

Professional Advisors
Audience:

Although much time and attention is devoted to transfer taxes by estate planning practitioners, the reality is that such taxes affect only a sliver of the population.  By contrast, the Congressional Budget Office estimates that seventy percent (70%) of families own property designated as capital assets (i.e. residences, other real estate, privately owned businesses, stocks, bonds, and mutual funds) with a combined value of $50 trillion.  With the increased applicable exclusion amount resulting in fewer and fewer taxable estates, basis planning has become increasingly important for estate planners, especially in light of state income taxes, the current medicare surtax, and the potential for elimination both the estate tax and step-up in basis for larger estates.  This presentation first summarizes the basic elements and rules regarding basis in capital assets and then reviews ten ideas that estate planning practitioners can utilize as they advise their clients.

In Trusts we Trust 

Professional Advisors
Audience:

Trusts law goes back nearly 1000 years and trusts predate every other current form of legal and business structure.  While the term is often used in a generic sense, the reality is that that trusts are like six-sided boxes whose terms and conditions can be structured and designed to accomplish hundreds of different objectives.  This presentation will review the history and genesis of trust law and how the six different elements of a trust (control, beneficiaries, income taxation, estate taxation, purpose and term) can be mixed and matched to create unique and powerful solutions to accomplish client’s goals and objectives.  It will also summarize new and exciting changes to trust laws that provide unique, custom solutions for an entirely new marketplace.

Life Insurance:  Fundamental Elements and Advanced Uses 

Professional Advisors
Audience:

One of the most powerful tools in estate and tax planning is life insurance, and yet it remains not fully understood or effectively implemented by most planners today.  This presentations begins with a comprehensive review of the key characteristics, elements, and benefits of life insurance from a tax, legal, and investment perspective.  It then reviews some of the best and most advanced uses of life insurance and its application in the areas of succession planning, philanthropy, wealth preservation, and multi-generational impact.