Advisors

John Christianson

John Christianson, CFA

Founder/CEO

John Christianson is the Founder and CEO of Highland®, where he has been guiding and stewarding the wealth and aspirations of some of the most successful wealth creators, business owners, and executives in the country for the past 25 years. John specializes in taking a thoughtful approach to integrating life and money, something he calls Living Fully™.

John is the host of The Wealth Confidant Podcast, available on iTunes, SoundCloud, Overcast & Stitcher. John writes regularly for The Wealth Clarity Blog, LinkedIn, and his work has recently been featured in the Harvard Business Review.

John’s “Why”

Since our humble beginnings in 1999 in a small executive suite, I’ve been committed to creating and leading a unique wealth advisory experience with the potential to have a transformative influence on the clients we are privileged to serve.

I believe money is a means to living a full life, not the end itself. I coach clients to understand what Living Fully means for them and steward their financial resources to accomplish that life.

I believe more strongly than ever that Highland is changing the world by encouraging, inspiring, and providing leverage to business leaders as they discover the true purpose of their lives and live as closely as possible to that purpose. I can’t imagine anything more important!

Personal

John is an avid rower and member of The George Pocock Rowing Center in Seattle.

John and Kelle enjoy spending their time traveling, gardening, boating, entertaining family and friends, and are active in their church and several local non-profit organizations. They believe that being generous with their time, talent, and treasure is central to a life of meaning and purpose.

John and his wife, Kelle, live in Woodinville, Washington with Blue, their rescue Catahoula Leopard mix.

John and Kelle are blessed to have three married adult children and one grandchild, all currently living on the west coast.

Contact John Christianson:
425-739-6500
john@highlandprivate.com

Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson, CFP®

Principal | Lead Advisor

Ben Johnson has over two decades of experience in financial services. He has a passion for advising on both money and life, thoughtfully aligning his client’s financial resources with their values.

Ben’s expertise is in serving business leaders and families with multi-generational wealth. He is highly proficient in executive compensation, concentrated stock strategies, retirement planning, risk management, tax and estate planning, philanthropic giving, and business transition. He has an in-depth understanding of family wealth matters.

Prior to Highland, he served as Vice President and Client Advisor at Laird Norton Wealth Management for over 9 years. He also managed the Institutional and Retirement Services Department at SAFECO Mutual Funds earlier in his career. Ben holds a B.A. with double major in Finance and Economics from North Park University in Chicago. He has been a Certified Financial Planner since 1999.

Ben’s “Why”

I believe in the concept of “to whom much is given, much is required.” I find meaning in helping clients make better decisions with their money to improve their life, family, and community.

I feel it’s essential to consider both the technical and the emotional consequences of plans, and merging these together to help each client live fully is what gets me up in the morning.

Personal

Ben grew up in a small town in the Midwest and moved to Washington in the mid 90’s. He lives in Snoqualmie with his wife Jennifer and two children. He enjoys hiking, fishing, skiing, reading, traveling, and having meaningful conversations with his friends in his free time.

Community Involvement

  • Member of Purposeful Planning Institute and active in the Seattle Collaboratory
  • Member of East King County Estate Planning Council
  • Provides pro-bono financial planning services for those with modest means
  • Active author on financial planning related topics

Contact Ben Johnson:
425-739-6500
ben@highlandprivate.com

Ben Wicks

Ben Wicks, CFP®

Principal | Lead Advisor

Ben Wicks has over 17 years of experience in wealth management. He has a passion for equipping clients with clarity and courage to live a full life and meaningful story.

A respected thought leader and community voice on financial life topics, Ben’s expertise is in serving closely-held and family-owned business owners, executives, and families with multi-generational wealth. He specializes in helping business owners understand how their business strategies align with their family’s financial goals and how to maximize that synergy. Ben’s breadth of work also includes portfolio management, retirement planning, tax planning, estate planning, and charitable gifting strategies.

Ben’s “Why”

I believe finances often bring uncertainty, anxiety, and even embarrassment. We transform financial confusion to comfort, confidence, and courage.

I believe money is a means to living a full life, not the end itself. We coach our clients to understand what Living Fully means for them and steward their financial resources to accomplish that life.

Personal

A Washington native, Ben’s favorite place to be is in the mountains. He is a founding member of Climb for Captives, a community of friends who “do what they love to fight what they hate”…climbing mountains to raise awareness and funds to provide aftercare for women and children rescued out of human trafficking. He lives in Bothell with his wife Angie and three kids and enjoys all things outdoors, woodworking, and homemade ice cream.

Community Involvement

  • Active member of Seattle #4 Rotary
  • Member of Vistage
  • Board member and Program Chair of NW Family Business Advisors
  • Seattle Children’s Hospital Legacy Council Member
  • Northshore Young Life

Contact Ben Wicks:
425-739-6500
benw@highlandprivate.com

Colleen Kroger

Colleen Kroeger, CFA

Advisor

Colleen Kroeger has over 17 years of experience in wealth management and has served Highland clients for over a decade. She particularly enjoys helping clients with complex personal financial situations find clarity and peace of mind.

Colleen’s expertise is in serving executives and their families and she also enjoys working with the next generation of wealth. Colleen’s particular strengths include executive compensation planning, portfolio management, retirement planning, tax planning, estate planning and charitable gifting strategies.

Prior to Highland, Colleen served as a Client Advisor at Laird Norton Wealth Management for over 7 years. She has also worked in investment consulting and accounting. Colleen is a CFA charterholder, a former CPA and has a B.S. in Accounting from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.

Colleen’s “Why”

I believe everyone can benefit from wealth management. I love helping clients manage their financial to-do list and, as a result, reduce their money worries and gain confidence in decision making.

Personal

Originally from the Chicago suburbs, Colleen moved to the PNW in 2000 to be closer to mountains and lakes. She is raising her family here and loves to find balance in her home and professional worlds. She lives in Redmond with her two daughters and spends her personal time with friends or doing all things active. She enjoys the outdoors, yoga and running.

Community Involvement

  • Youth basketball coach
  • PTSA

Contact Colleen Kroeger:
425-739-6500
colleen@highlandprivate.com

Are you ready to invest in a life fully lived? Let us know how we can help.