Founders and Senior Advisers

The Founders and Senior Advisers of Jacaranda FP are:

Brett Stene

Brett Stene - Founder

Brett started in the financial services industry in 1986 after leaving the international accountancy firm Arthur Andersen and working in Australia and the UK. Over the past 30 years he has headed the research and strategy operations of adviser groups, developed new financial products, worked in funds management, sat on a number of boards, consulted and lectured internationally. Brett is often referred to as being the financial planning guru, and is synonymous with imparting knowledge and mentoring others in the industry.

Jeannie McKenzie

Jeannie McKenzie - Founder

Jeannie started her career as a chartered accountant with Price Waterhouse Coopers, working in offices in Australia and Canada. Her experience covered business valuations, financial investigation and strategic business advice. Through her role with a multinational company, Jeannie further developed advice skills on business profitability and restructures. Jeannie is a strong advocate for the broader financial planning community and generously offers her time on boards to assist many advisers in the industry reach their potential.

Blake Wendt

Blake Wendt – Associate Partner & Senior Adviser

Blake is known for delivering highly positive financial outcomes for clients based on research, his extensive educational qualifications, his technical know-how and overall financial planning experience. Blake is highly regarded for sharing knowledge and insights in a warm and engaging manner to many clients who seek his guidance. Blake believes that a good adviser can enrich the lives of anyone seeking assistance. He sees this done through an engaging professional relationship to best understand the client’s perspective and drivers, and then applying this framework to offering appropriate practical solutions and strategies. Blake generously provides his time weekly on talk-back Radio 2GB and 3AW where he answers the many and varied financial planning questions raised by listeners. In his personal life on weekends, you will often find Blake at a tennis court or trying to find the next best Japanese restaurant.

Alex Allenby

Alex Allenby – Associate Partner & Senior Adviser

Alex has over a decade of experience with Jacaranda Financial Planning, assisting clients to solidly meet their financial objectives. He holds a number of academic qualifications to support the quality advice he provides. Alex exudes a professionalism and passion to ensure the client experience is at the highest level. This commitment to excellence has seen Alex peer awarded at the national level. Alex is a strong client advocate in all aspects of providing advice. He is most engaged when developing financial strategies to help clients navigate their way through changing economic environments at each life stage and embracing a disciplined approach to meeting client’s financial needs and objectives. When Alex is not assisting clients, he thoroughly enjoys the outdoors with his beautiful wife Alexandra.

Michael Pavani

Michael Pavani – Associate Partner & Senior Adviser

Michael started his career as a tax accountant at the personal and business level, and through this developed a passion to apply logic and technical know-how to best deliver solutions to clients’ overall financial positions. For the past decade, Michael has leveraged technical knowledge to holistic financial advice, making superannuation and wealth creation easily understood by his many clients. Michael has an engaging approach, where he believes the journey of financial literacy and empowerment are equally important to gaining the best outcome for clients. Michael assists many wealth accumulators as well as retirees to meet their objectives. When not assisting clients on their financial journey, Michael shows the same enthusiasm to an active involvement in his local football club (soccer) as a player and coach.

Nick Patterson

Nick Patterson - Senior Adviser

Nick started his career as a Chartered Accountant with Deloitte Australia, focusing on providing strategic and operational advice to private clients, their families, and their businesses. Through this exposure, Nick has developed a strong analytical yet personable approach to tackle complex issues in a simple and engaging way. For the past 10 years as a financial advisor, Nick has been dedicated to the financial security of his clients, as he seeks to unearth better ways for them to attain a high quality of life in their retirement. In doing this, Nick draws on his extensive education and hands on experience, being a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants as well as being a Certified Financial Planner. Nick is a life long local of Sydney's Inner West. He enjoys an active lifestyle and is a rusted-on NSW Waratahs and Wallabies supporter. Nick is married to Maddison, and they have 2 young children.

Diana Ramirez

Diana Ramirez – Senior Adviser

Diana has a finance and tax accounting background spanning over 14 years’ in the industry. In this time, she has acquired excellent technical knowledge and experience across wealth protection, retirement, superannuation, estate planning and portfolio management. Diana considers it a privilege to understand each client’s unique circumstances, their needs, goals and family circumstances, so as to provide considered, personal advice to allow clients to meet their agreed objectives. Diana is inspired to be the best financial planner every day. Clients understand that they work with Diana, allowing her to then adapt strategy and investment allocation through their financial journey. Core to Diana’s philosophy, is that the best financial planner relationship is based on warmth, respect and dedication to the principle of service delivery. Away from work, Diana is married with two gorgeous kids (Bjorn and Martina). She enjoys spending time with family, playing tennis, going for walks and meeting up with friends.

Patrick Abrams

Pat Abrams – Senior Adviser

Pat’s high-touch approach to client advice stems from his broad experience in investment management and financial planning, combined with his extensive educational qualifications. He has a deep understanding of financial markets; and applies this understanding to provide both insightful strategic advice and developing portfolios across asset classes and investment specialists which meet client objectives. Pat believes that at the heart of good financial advice is providing peace of mind, helping clients to recognise the things that are within their control and those that are not, so that they can move forward in life with confidence. He is an effective communicator with high attention to detail and enjoys the client education aspect to financial advice. He shares that rare ability to make the complex understood. Away from work, Pat spends time outdoors with his wife and young son and is a keen tennis player.

Ben Malkki

Ben Malkki – Senior Adviser

Ben’s passion to assist clients stems from his extensive studies in finance and financial planning, and the empowerment that he sees clients obtain from the holistic advice he provides. Ben believes in both the qualitative and quantitative benefits, bringing these together to provide sensible and clear financial planning solutions. He is known for bringing a consensus approach to the advice he provides, through client engagement and buy-in as to what is required and what can practically be achieved. Ben leaves no stone unturned on behalf of clients. He is often seen researching and discussing with clients their portfolios, looking for opportunities to improve the client outcome. Ben encourages his clients to be an active participant in their financial planning journey through a framework of objectivity and measured value add. Away from work, Ben loves spending time with his family and exploring the great Australian outdoors.

Joel Harty

Joel Harty - Senior Adviser

Joel has a wealth of experience having worked for some of Australia's largest superannuations funds as well as start-up businesses. With over nine years experience as a financial adviser, he has excellent technical knowledge across superannuation, tax structures and investment markets. Joel's strengths lie in his ability to build relationships whilst also providing technical expertise, enabling him to take clients on the journey to demystify complex money problems. Joel is a patron of XY Adviser - a platform designed to drive the positive evolution of financial advice and the services delivered to clients. He is also a Certified Financial Planner and Justice of the Peace. Away from work, Joel has two children - Poppy and Freddy who he adores, he loves to go ocean swimming, walking and playing a good game of chess!

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