About Our Client Services Professionals
The professionals at Strategic Wealth Management Group can guide your financial future. If both performance-driven investing and tax and estate planning are vital to your future, Strategic Wealth Management Group, through its business partnership with MACC, a registered broker dealer and MAFM, a registered investment adviser, demonstrates a passion for exceeding the expectations of our clients.
Michael T. Bigley
President & Principal
Mr. Bigley is one of the original shareholders of Strategic Wealth Management Group. He has 29 years’ experience in the financial services industry primarily providing investment advisory services to retirement plans and individual clients.
Prior to founding Strategic Wealth Management Group he provided consulting services for clients at Mid Atlantic Capital Group, a diversified financial services company which includes Mid Atlantic Capital Corporation (MACC), a FINRA registered broker-dealer, and Mid Atlantic Financial Management, Inc.(MAFM), an SEC registered investment adviser. He is a licensed representative of MACC and an associated person of MAFM.
He began his professional career with Arthur Andersen LLP. While at Andersen, Mr. Bigley obtained valuable experience within the firm’s audit and emerging growth company divisions working with clients in the financial services area. He earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Accounting from the Pennsylvania State University.
Mr. Bigley resides with his family in Peters Township and has been actively involved in charitable activities primarily dealing with the welfare of children and families.
James F. Berquist
Vice-President & Principal
James F. Berquist, is an original shareholder of Strategic Wealth Management Group, Ltd.
In 1993, Mr. Berquist helped form Strategic Wealth Management Group and through its business partnership with MACC, a registered broker dealer and MAFM, a registered investment adviser, is able to implement a structure which could offer a level of service and sophistication to clients that had previously been reserved for larger “institutions”. This focus on professional investment management enables Mr. Berquist to provide an ongoing comprehensive analysis of his client’s portfolios in addition to delivering a superior customer service oriented product.
Prior to the founding of Strategic Wealth Management Group, Ltd., Mr. Berquist was responsible for the development and maintenance of client relationships in his position as Senior Vice President in the Asset Management Division of Mid Atlantic Capital Group. He also provided technical and fundamental research on marketable securities with a particular emphasis on fixed income securities. Mr. Berquist brought fourteen years of experience in the management of personal, corporate, and retirement assets to Mid Atlantic.
Upon graduation from Columbia in 1976, Mr. Berquist joined Merrill Lynch as an account executive. In 1984 he subsequently joined E.F. Hutton, which was acquired by Shearson Lehman Brothers in 1987. During his tenure with these firms, Mr. Berquist was responsible for the development and implementation of investment and marketing strategies, along with corporate development planning, portfolio management and individual investment counseling.
Mr. Berquist resides with his family in Peters Township. He is involved in various civic activities and serves on the Board of Directors for The Samaritan Foundation, and Peters Township Council.
James P. Reese, Jr.
Treasurer & Principal
James P. Reese, Jr. is the Treasurer and one of the original founding shareholders of Strategic Wealth Management Group, Ltd.
In 1993, Mr. Reese along with Mr. Bigley and Mr. Berquist formed Strategic Wealth Management Group, through its business partnership with MACC, a registered broker dealer and MAFM, a registered investment adviser, in order to specialize in performance driven, comprehensive wealth management strategies for a select group of clientele.
As a consultant backed with over 20 years of experience in public accounting and the financial services business, Jim provides extensive investment, tax, and estate planning research for all of the firm’s personal, corporate, and institutional clientele.
Prior to founding Strategic Wealth Management Group, Ltd., Mr. Reese was affiliated with Mid Atlantic Capital Group. MACG was a regional financial services company providing consultation in diverse client service areas including investment banking, corporate finance, asset management, tax, insurance and healthcare financial management.
During his eight years with MACG, Mr. Reese initially served in the capacity of chief financial officer. He relinquished that role in 1988 in order to specialize in the firm’s wealth management practice.
Mr. Reese graduated from Robert Morris University in May 1983 earning high academic honors as a magma cum laude graduate. Jim was inducted into the Robert Morris University Honorary Academic Hall in December, 1983.
Upon graduation from Robert Morris University, Mr. Reese became affiliated with the international accounting firm of Coopers and Lybrand. During his tenure with Coopers and Lybrand, Jim earned his Certified Public Accountant designation and was engaged in diverse areas of the firm?s audit and tax practices.
Mr. Reese is involved in several local government and youth athletic activities. Jim presently serves on the Bethel Park School District’s Citizen Finance Committee. In addition, he is actively involved in the Bethel Park Baseball and Football Associations in a head coaching capacity.
Senior Financial Planning Analyst
Carey Droznek has joined Strategic Wealth Management as a Senior Financial Planning Analyst.
Carey holds the Series 7 and 66 Securities licenses as well as the Life, Health, and Variable Annuity Insurance License. Carey started her financial services career as an Investment Associate with UBS in Tampa Florida in 2007. After relocating to Pittsburgh with her husband in 2010 she continued her financial planning career with Hapanowicz & Associates for 4 years. During this time, Carey passed the rigorous coursework and testing requirements to become a Certified Financial Planner. After taking a short time off to care for her growing family, Carey returned full time to financial planning with Strategic Wealth Management in April of 2016. She truly enjoys helping people create and obtain their retirement and life planning goals. Carey resides in Peters Township with her husband Chris and two children Jackson and Lena.
Chief Financial Officer & Client Relationship Manager
Rick has been with Strategic Wealth Management Group since its inception in 1993. He currently acts as the firm’s Chief Financial Officer and Senior Client Service Manager.
He focuses on providing in-depth client relationship support with emphasis on investment, financial and tax planning. As the firm’s Practice Manager, he works closely with the advisors and staff to continuously build and enhance service standards and office procedures to ensure maximum efficiency and the ultimate client experience.
Rick received a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration and Finance from West Virginia University in 1992 followed by a Master’s Degree in Business Administration and Accounting from the Katz Graduate School of Business at the University of Pittsburgh in 1994. He is a Registered Representative of Mid Atlantic Capital Corporation and holds the Series 7 and 63 securities licenses.
Rick resides in Wexford, Pennsylvania with his wife and two children and is actively involved with his church and community.
Karen Chess joined Strategic Wealth Management Group in 2004, prior to that she was in retail banking for 25 years.
She focuses on the day to day operations of the firm and assists the partners of the firm offering high level and efficient client support.
Jennifer Camody is the office manager for Strategic Wealth Management and has a B.A. in Art from the Pennsylvania State University.
Jen has retail as well as teaching experience. She enjoys running, biking, traveling, and volunteering.