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Angela Stowell, Financial Advisor, Denver

July 16, 2021 | 4 min. read

After retiring from service, Angela Stowell wanted to help others, build her own business and remain connected with the military – which is how she found a home at First Command.

As a Financial Advisor, Angela Stowell coaches military and other client families to make smart decisions with their money in pursuit of financial security. She helps them assess their current situation, codify their financial goals and then implement recommendations to pursue those goals. Stowell provides clients lifetime service – mentoring them along their financial journey and supporting their families in times of need. 

Why did you decide to join First Command? 

I joined First Command as a Financial Advisor so I could pay forward the opportunity that I was given when I was a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army: I was referred to First Command by a colleague, started my financial planning journey and have been a highly satisfied client for 30 years. When I retired from the military, I wanted to help others, build my own business, and continue to serve my military family. Working with First Command enables me to do all these things in spades!

What are some of the challenges you’ve found here at First Command? 

My biggest challenge was less about joining First Command and more about retiring from the military. After “wearing the uniform” for nearly 30 years, it was difficult for me to imagine transitioning out of that lifestyle. 

First Command actually helped me face that challenge since I was able to remain connected with the military. And because my job requires me to become more knowledgeable about the units from all components based within the Greater Aurora, Denver region, I even ended up expanding my military engagement. It has been really rewarding to learn about other units and build even more connections and relationships.

What are you most excited about doing at First Command? 

I’m most excited when I get to educate and mentor clients about new financial topics, or details about their own portfolios or military benefits which they weren’t aware of. Seeing light bulbs come on, helping abate concerns, or putting a structured plan in place to pursue lifetime goals – these all bring a great sense of satisfaction. Regardless of a client family’s stage of life or financial situation, I find that providing an objective, considerate viewpoint adds value on any number of levels. That makes my day!

What women in your life have impacted you the most? 

I was blessed to have a strong-willed mother and a determined and immensely caring sister as childhood role models. I grew up on a 500-acre farm in the countryside of Devon, England, where I learned the importance of hard work, commitment and working together. My siblings and I were all born there and enjoyed an idyllic life, primarily farming sheep, some cattle and lots of crops and grains. In the mid-1970s, my parents were looking for new adventures for our family, so we emigrated to Montana. 

Since then, I’ve shared many memories with my Mum and sister, and I have seen them both face difficult personal challenges with relentless positive attitudes, determination, and resilience. They both give me strength daily and greatly influence my relationships with clients – I try to emulate their sincere, caring, and reliable natures. Both have stories that support the absolute importance of the work we do at First Command and why having a thoughtful, balanced financial strategy can give you peace of mind and help prepare you for any situation.

I also had the good fortune of meeting several special women when I was in the New Hampshire National Guard: One was the Human Resource Officer who hired me, and the other was a Human Interaction Consultant who worked with the National Guard. Through their organizational leadership and personal development programs – and their personal examples – I learned so much about myself. It helped me bring hidden strengths to the forefront and improved my connections with colleagues, family, friends and now clients.

What brought you to this level in your career? 

I was blessed with a long, rewarding military career that was built on ever-increasing positions of leadership and responsibility. I served on active duty, in the National Guard and with the Army Reserves. I served with great leaders, mentors, and hundreds – if not thousands – of Soldiers and other service members who taught me daily lessons in leadership and about my own strengths and weaknesses. I have always been someone who reflects on the past to improve myself and find the best way forward, and that continues to serve me well. 

Interpersonal skills are so important for a leader. What soft skills helped you get to this position? 

It’s important for leaders to demonstrate confidence and trustworthiness – and to do that authentically, you need to live up to those ideals. I value and practice honesty, integrity, and clear communication, and I believe this has been integral to my career success. Being present and available also go a long way in establishing trust, and I believe my consistent actions show that I sincerely care about every client.

Favorite MovieHow to Train my Dragon is a favorite – it’s a fun, adventurous movie that weaves lessons about compassion and fearlessness.

Favorite Book:  The Elephant in the Room is a great book because it speaks to the strength of a simple, disciplined financial plan.  Plus, the author, Barry Bridger, is a tremendous example of perseverance and faith. Along the same lines, Unbroken is the true story of unprecedented survival, redemption and forgiveness and a testimony to the strength of human character.

Favorite Work Resource:  My favorite work resources are the simple tried and true illustrations that help us show the importance of a balanced financial plan: The three-legged stool, the income allocation chart, or an insurance illustration. A picture always paints a thousand words, and images can help simplify complex topics.

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