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Meet Our Team

At Halpern Financial, you have access to our team of experts partnering with you to help you achieve your financial goals.

Ted Halpern Photo
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Ted Halpern

President

Ted S. Halpern Photo

Ted Halpern

AAMS, CRPC, AWMA®, RFC® , AIF®

President and Founder

As Founder and President of Halpern Financial Inc., Ted is directly involved in developing and implementing wealth management strategies for affluent families and closely held businesses. He serves as Director of the firm's Investment Research Team and oversees the asset allocation process. Ted believes in educating our clients toward a logical path of wealth accumulation. Since establishing Halpern Financial in 1991, he has drawn his inspiration from motivating clients to achieve their financial goals.

Ted holds a degree in Finance from the University of Maryland. He is an SEC Registered Investment Advisor, a NAPFA-Registered Financial Advisor, an Accredited Asset Management Specialist (AAMS), a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor (CRPC), an Accredited Wealth Management Advisor (AWMA) and a Registered Financial Consultant (RFC). He is a member of the Financial Planning Association, the International Association of Registered Financial Consultants (IARFC) and the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors (NAPFA). He has also been continuously awarded with "Ethics Approved Status" for his adherence to the IARFC Code of Ethics.

In 2019, Ted Halpern earned the AIF® designation. Attainment of the AIF designation demonstrates understanding of the principles of fiduciary duty, the standards of conduct for acting as a fiduciary, and a process for carrying out fiduciary responsibility.

Ted is a dedicated husband and father. He and his wife Bethe live in Leesburg, VA with their twins Jack and Lauren and their dog Einstein.

 thalpern@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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Melissa Sotudeh

Director of Advisory Services

Melissa Sotudeh

CFP®, AIF®

Director of Advisory Services

Chief Compliance Officer

As the Director of Advisory Services at Halpern Financial, Melissa Sotudeh ensures our clients receive high-quality wealth management guidance from every member of our advisory team. She leads our advisory team on best practices in developing and implementing wealth management strategies to be applied consistently to all our clients. Melissa has extensive financial experience in the development of retirement, investment, tax management and estate planning strategies.

Melissa has a special passion for helping clients achieve peace of mind on their financial journey. In particular, she works with clients as they transition through life stages, from paying for children's college expenses to maximizing financial opportunities as an empty-nester, as well as guiding clients through sudden family changes. In January 2020, Melissa was the Financial Planner of the Year recipient, an award presented by the National Capital Area Financial Planning Association. 

Melissa received her Bachelor of Arts in Economics from the University of Texas in Austin, and her Master of Business Administration from the Thunderbird School of Global Management in Phoenix, Arizona.

Melissa has over twenty years of experience in a variety of business and community service activities. She began her career at the World Bank in Washington, D.C. and then went on to serve as a Management Analyst and International Market Development Specialist in the Office of the Executive Director at The US Securities and Exchange Commission for five years.

In 2010, Melissa completed the Certified Financial Planner (CFP®) designation from the CFP Board of Standards. The CFP® designation is a mark of distinction for the individuals who have met the education, examination, experience and ethics standards established by the Certified Financial Planners Board of Standards (CFP Board). After several years of service as a volunteer with CFP Board, Melissa is a member of the CFP Board Council on Examinations. The Council on Examinations is a volunteer group of CFP® professionals. They serve as primary subject matter experts for the CFP® Certification Examination and provide the CFP Board with recommendations regarding the development, administration and scoring of the exam consistent with best practices in high stakes testing and certification.

In 2019, Melissa Sotudeh earned the AIF® designation. Attainment of the AIF designation demonstrates understanding of the principles of fiduciary duty, the standards of conduct for acting as a fiduciary, and a process for carrying out fiduciary responsibility.

Melissa has a passion for college planning since her two children went through the college search process. She presents her “Late Stage College Funding” talk to D.C.-area parents several times a year with a college admissions counselor. She has written several articles about college funding, and is the author of Find Your Financial Safety School, a choose-your-own-adventure e-book.

She has promoted financial literacy in the region through one-on-one counseling with Capitol Hill staffers and her leadership role on the steering committee for the Metro Washington Financial Planning Day 2011 and 2013. She also served on the Board of Directors of the Financial Planning Association of the National Capital Area for four years. Melissa lives in Bethesda with her husband and two children. She is an avid runner and in 2017, she completed the Boston Marathon.

 msotudeh@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

Recognitions:

  • 2021, 2022 Top Financial Professional by Northern Virginia Magazine
  • 2022 Washingtonian Top Financial Advisor
  • FPA 2020 Planner of the Year Award

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Daniel Trumbower

Senior Wealth Advisor

Daniel Trumbower

CFP®


Senior Wealth Advisor

Dan Trumbower can truly say that investing and personal finance are his lifelong vocation. From the time Dan was 12 years old, he remembers tracking the performance of mutual funds gifted to him by his grandfather, who was an advisor himself. 

Today, Dan is an experienced wealth advisor with two decades of comprehensive experience in the field. He has proven expertise in trading, portfolio development and analysis as well as investment selection and due diligence. 

He finds it incredibly fulfilling to meet with clients one on one. He enjoys listening to each client’s financial goals and concerns, and then providing solutions to help them grow and preserve their wealth.

He has special expertise in:

  • Financial issues affecting key executives of both private and public corporations.
  • Restricted Stock Awards, Restricted Stock Units (RSUs), Incentive (ISO) and Non-qualified (NQ) stock option exercise strategies along with NUA distributions from       employer savings plans.
  • Tax efficient diversification of concentrated stock positions.
  • Working directly with tax professionals and attorneys to streamline and customize financial planning strategies unique to each client.
  • Fixed income trading, options trading, equity trading and portfolio management.
  • Customized tax efficient portfolio strategies designed to fit each client's individual situation.
  • Legacy planning strategies. 
  • Planning solutions for major liquidity events.

Dan received a BSBA in Finance from Coastal Carolina University, and is a CFP® professional. The CFP® designation is a mark of distinction for the individuals who have met the education, examination, experience and ethics standards established by the Certified Financial Planners Board of Standards (CFP Board). 

Dan has also been a member of the Financial Planning Association of the National Capital Area for over a decade.

Dan currently resides in Frederick County, MD with his family. He is an avid golfer and also enjoys fishing and woodworking in his spare time.

 dtrumbower@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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Jennifer Wood

Director of Client Experience

Jennifer Wood

director of client experience

As the Director of Client Experience for Halpern Financial Inc., Jennifer is responsible for all aspects of client care and service, including establishing new client accounts, transferring assets and reconciling portfolios in the firm's portfolio management software. She is in frequent contact with clients to ensure that customer care with Halpern Financial, Inc. is of the highest standard. Jennifer frequently monitors industry standards and new financial technology to keep the Firm up-to-date and optimize the performance of the back office.

Jennifer has been a part of the Halpern Financial team since April 1999, motivated by the opportunities of working for an independent advisory firm. She is certified as a Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional™ through the College for Financial Planning and if ever in need, Jennifer is a Notary Public. 

A native of the Washington Metropolitan area, Jennifer resides in Rockville, MD with her husband and daughter. In her free time, she volunteers with the school PTA board and spends time with family and friends enjoying the culture, diversity and opportunities the area has to offer.

 jwood@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000


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Kirsty Peev

Director of Portfolio Management

Kirsty Peev

CFP®, AIF®

director of portfolio management

As the Director of Portfolio Management for Halpern Financial Inc., Kirsty is responsible for the design and application of investment strategies in client portfolios including the ongoing analysis of economic data, asset classes and client-specific data. She monitors balances, news, cost basis, activity and portfolio holdings. She keeps clients in touch with their investments and how their portfolio responds to market movements and various economic and market scenarios. Kirsty is responsible for a broad array of customized portfolio strategies including the concepts of asset allocation, portfolio optimization, cash flow, tax efficiency and retirement planning. Kirsty is a member of the firm's Investment Research Team, and contributes her expertise to the Smarter Investor column at U.S. News & World Report and other publications.

Kirsty joined Halpern Financial, Inc. in 2002, motivated by Ted's vision of the challenges and opportunities of working with a fee-only, independent advisory firm. It has always been incredibly important to Kirsty, to be on 'the same side of the table' as our clients - a passion that all of us at Halpern Financial share. 

Kirsty is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional, with a Bachelor's Degree with Honors in Education from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland. Kirsty is also a Registered Investment Advisor Representative and earned her Financial Paraplanner Qualified Professional™ through the College for Financial Planning. Kirsty is also proud to have earned the AIF® designation - attainment of the AIF designation demonstrates understanding of the principles of fiduciary duty, the standards of conduct for acting as a fiduciary, and the process for carrying out fiduciary responsibility.  

She lives in Virginia with her husband and sons. 

 kpeev@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000


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Nisha Patel

Retirement Plan Consultant & Portfolio Administrator

Nisha Patel


retirement plan consultant and portfolio administrator

As the Retirement Plan Consultant and Portfolio Administrator for Halpern Financial Inc., Nisha Patel provides objective guidance that is aligned with the needs of plan sponsors and employees eligible for the applicable retirement savings plan. 

As Portfolio Administrator, Nisha oversees the operations related to portfolio construction, trading activity and confirmations. This includes portfolio and trading reports, trade generation in coordination with the Direction of Portfolio Management, and operations management of client and portfolio targets.

Nisha holds a Bachelors of Arts degree in Management and Business from Barat College of DePaul University in Illinois. Nisha resides in Loudoun County, Virginia. 

 npatel@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

 

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Cody James

Wealth Analyst


Cody James

CFA®

WEALTH Analyst

Cody is a Wealth Analyst at Halpern Financial after joining the firm in the Fall of 2021. As a Wealth Analyst, Cody works collaboratively with the Head of Planning and proactively seeks to identify opportunities within wealth planning and investment management to provide clients with an efficient and suitable path forward in achieving their financial goals. Proud to be a fiduciary and passionate in discovering, validating and illustrating opportunities, Cody strives to deliver value to every client. 

Cody graduated from the University of Virginia in 2017, studying at the McIntire School of Commerce and concentrating in both finance and accounting. Before joining Halpern Financial, Cody worked in housing finance where he provided mortgage portfolio scenarios and sensitivity analysis.

Cody holds his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation and is a member of the CFA society of Washington, DC. The CFA Program teaches and tests the fundamentals of investment tools, valuing assets, portfolio management and wealth planning. 

Cody was born and raised in Loudoun County and currently resides in Ashburn. In his spare time, Cody enthusiastically follows the Tennessee Titans and Denver Nuggets very closely, and UVA sports of course. Cody also enjoys playing pick-up basketball at his local gym, playing tennis and skiing. 

 cjames@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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Lindsie James

Operations Manager

Lindsie James

Operations manager

Lindsie James joined Halpern Financial in 2016 as the Operations Administrator.  Now as the firms Operations Manager, Lindsie ensures the delivery of exceptional client service by providing critical knowledge, operational support and technology support to the team. She has a wealth of administrative and operations experience from her eight years as a Patent Prosecution Paralegal. She takes pride in a job well done, from the smallest of tasks to large-scale projects. Lindsie earned her B.S. in Business Marketing from Davis & Elkins College, as well as a Paralegal Certification from Boston University. Lindsie is also a Notary Public to facilitate document signatures in our Virginia office.

Born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, Lindsie now resides in Leesburg, VA with her husband, son, and daughter. She enjoys being outside on the water, staying active, and traveling back to the Eastern Shore whenever she has the chance!

 ljames@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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Susan Grimail

Client Administrator

Susan Grimail

Client Administrator

As Client Administrator for Halpern Financial Inc., Susan enjoys being the starting point of contact with our clients. Her responsibilities include a number of administrative duties, as well as coordination of internal communications and email correspondence. She personally greets all visitors to our office and is an integral part of maintaining the total client experience at Halpern Financial, Inc. 

Susan resides in Maryland with her husband Michael.

 sgrimail.com@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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Jennifer Davis

Head of Planning

Jennifer Davis

CFP®, EA, AIF®

Head of Planning

As Head of Planning for Halpern Financial Inc., Jennifer Davis ensures that clients receive the financial consultations they need at critical turning points in their lives—from the birth of a child to retirement. Jennifer provides planning expertise covering a variety of topics, from cash flow planning, debt reduction, insurance analysis, tax management, retirement projections and retirement income security planning. She helps to analyze and evaluate each client’s current financial status and goals, then develops and tests optimal recommendations to bridge the gap between where they are today and where they want to be.

Committed to expanding financial wellness and education, Jennifer prides herself in giving honest, transparent and sound guidance. She joined the Planning Team at Halpern Financial, Inc. in 2015 and values the relationships developed with clients as she helps them meet life’s goals.

She is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professional. The CFP® designation is a mark of distinction for the individuals who have met the education, examination, experience and ethics standards established by the Certified Financial Planners Board of Standards (CFP Board). She also holds a federally licensed Enrolled Agent tax designation, the highest credential the IRS awards. In 2019, Jennifer Davis earned the AIF® designation. Attainment of the AIF designation demonstrates understanding of the principles of fiduciary duty, the standards of conduct for acting as a fiduciary, and a process for carrying out fiduciary responsibility.

She graduated with a B.S. in Finance and a minor in Philosophy from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Jennifer's interests include being active, reading, and exploring the great outdoors with her family and friends. She volunteers with the Metro Washington Financial Planning Day to provide needed financial information to the community and raise awareness of the importance of financial planning. She also likes to compete in triathlons, which sometimes takes her all over the world!

She lives in Maryland with her husband, sons and two cats.

 jdavis@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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David Leone

Wealth Planner

David Leone


WEALTH PLANNER

David Leone joins the Halpern Financial Planning Team with almost a decade of financial services industry experience in planning, portfolio construction, insurance, securities, and risk management. David earned his Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA®) designation at Wharton and graduated from Rutgers University in 2011 with a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science.

David was born and raised in Washington Township, NJ and currently resides with his wife, Lisa, and pup, Luna, in Leesburg, VA. In his free time, David loves playing golf and is a diehard Philadelphia sports fan who bleeds green for the Eagles! He and his wife also enjoy the outdoors. They love a beach day in the summer or taking their dog Luna for a hike in the fall! 

 dleone@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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Julie Spaeth

Administrative Assistant


Julie Spaeth

Administrative Assistant

As the Administrative Assistant for Halpern Financial Inc., Julie assists with daily office operations in our Ashburn office. She also provides administrative support to our Operations Manager, Portfolio Management team and Retirement Plan Consultant.

Julie joined Halpern Financial Inc., in 2022. She brings a variety of administrative experience from her work at educational institutions and legal entities. Julie earned a B.A. in Organizational Communications from Indiana University – Indianapolis.

A native Hoosier, Julie now resides in Ashburn, VA with her husband and daughter.

 jspaeth@halpernfinancial.com
 240-268-1000

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Olivia Luper

Communications Coordinator

Olivia Luper


communications coordinator

As the Communications Coordinator for Halpern Financial Inc., Olivia Luper manages both public relations and business promotion strategies, including the development and implementation of a digital presence and maintenance of ongoing client and prospect communication. Olivia is passionate about connecting the talented individuals on the Halpern team with the individuals and families who can benefit most from their services.

Olivia Luper holds a B.A. in English and a M.A. in English Literature from Florida Atlantic University. As a professional finance writer, she aims to simplify and humanize complex financial topics into a language that is easily accessible.

Olivia resides in South Florida with her husband and three exceptional children. Her interests include reading, competitive bodybuilding, and kicking up her feet on the beaches of her current hometown.

 oluper@halpernfinancial.com

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