A native of Portsmouth, VA, Michael attended Old Dominion College, studying music education before enlisting in the US Army. He auditioned for and was accepted into the Continental Army Band, where he quickly advanced to the rank of sergeant and was the resident sound and recording engineer in addition to being a performer with the band.
After fulfilling his enlistment, Michael joined General Electric Corporation in Suffolk, VA as a circuit analyst and returned to Old Dominion University to study economics and electrical engineering. Because of the 1974-5 recession, Michael left the GE plant to become a full-time professional musician playing in numerous bands up and down the East Coast. As much fun as that was, the duties of fatherhood called, and Michael left life on the road and secured a position at a local music store chain as the electric organ repair person. That soon evolved into a sales position and then into store management. Realizing that his surname was not compatible with further advancement at the stores, Michael sought career advice and a respected friend suggested the securities industry – a very good suggestion.
In 1986, after interviews with multiple securities firms (and offers from all), Michael accepted a position at IDS (Investors Diversified Services). After 17 years at what became American Express Financial Advisors (now Ameriprise), Michael sought more autonomy and freedom to do what his clients needed instead of what the corporation needed and joined a fellow Rotarian at his RIA (Registered Investment Advisor) firm, Financial Counselors of Virginia. Quickly advancing to President and Managing Principal, Michael took the sleepy little firm into the modern technological world of computer-based financial services. He also earned his designation as a Certified Financial Planner®.
Seeing the need for increased breadth and depth to his ability to serve clients, Michael sought to increase his corporate size by joining another RIA firm. He interviewed numerous firms over a 4-year period, deciding that Heritage Wealth Management Group was the right fit and in 2020 Michael became an Advisor with HWMG. He firmly believes in the role of a fiduciary, seeking to always put the clients’ needs first – before his own or the needs of the company. That culture is the bedrock of Michael’s practice and of HWMG.
In addition to his Advisory practice, Michael has enjoyed a lifelong love of music. He currently sings with the Virginia Symphony Orchestra Chorus and has performed in numerous seasons with the Virginia Opera Chorus. He sings and plays flute, clarinet and saxophone in his church where his wife, Edna is the Director of Music Ministries. Michael also owns a mobile recording service that records audio and video primarily of concert performances from various choruses, bands, chamber groups and soloists. He is a Past President of the Portsmouth Rotary Club and a Paul Harris Fellow.
Michael and Edna have one daughter, Jennifer, a teacher in the Suffolk city schools, two grandchildren, Gabrielle and Tanner and two great-grandchildren, Malakai and Lyra Jane, all of whom live close by in Portsmouth.