Interview with D. Paterson Cope, CEO & Founder of Cope Private Wealth
D. Paterson Cope is CEO and founder of Cope Private Wealth, a comprehensive financial planning company based out of Birmingham, Alabama. Cope Private Wealth specializes in helping retirees and near-retirees to plan out the rest of their lives in comfort and security.
As a financial advisor, Cope ensures that his clients’ success is aligned with his own. Cope Private Wealth only gets a raise when their client’s account increases in value. In other words, they prosper only when their client does.
The firm seeks to grow financial assets judiciously while also ensuring as little taxation as possible.
In terms of experience, D. Paterson Cope has been advising clients for more than 30 years. After graduating from the University of Alabama, he later went on to become a Certified Financial Planner in 1997.
Over the years, he has worked for and alongside such companies as J.C. Bradford & Co., Lehman Brothers, and the Robinson-Humphrey Company in Atlanta. Cope has proudly served several hundred families during his tenure as a financial advisor.
At heart, however, D. Paterson Cope is perhaps best known as a family man. Above all else, Pat enjoys spending time with his wife, Jennifer Miree Cope, and their two sons, Bobby and Charlie.
Outside of work, he can be found exercising, attending Sunday services at Independent Presbyterian Church, reading the news, or watching sports.
Tell us about yourself?
My name is D. Paterson Cope. I am a graduate of UA, SAE and am originally from Montgomery, Alabama. I actually moved to Birmingham to marry my wife Jennifer, and I’ve been in the wealth management business since ‘87 and have been a CFP® since ‘97. I have two grown boys and a Havenese, enjoy bird hunting, golf, exercise, and going to church.
What makes you different than other professionals in your field?
I take a different approach to financial planning. Everyone’s situation is different – there is no “cookie cutter” financial plan or approach to investments. Instead, I believe the simplest portfolio is the best. We also focus heavily on client service – we are always available – call or email us any time, night or day.
How much market share can you capture in the next 3 years?
We aim to grow 20% a year. Some of that is market appreciation, the rest is acquiring new clients.
What was the most important part of your professional journey?
Getting the CFP® designation. Plain and simple.
What are the best and worst purchases you’ve ever made?
The best was when I bought my first house. The worst was when I purchased a lake lot that barely had enough water frontage to build a dock. Took a big loss on that impulse purchase.
What takes up too much of your time?
To be honest with you? It would have to be worrying.
What three pieces of advice would you give to college students/new startup business owners who want to become entrepreneurs?
That would be easy: have a plan, have a good lawyer, and then have another plan.
Who has impressed you most with what they’ve accomplished?
The Selmon Brothers, who played football for Oklahoma – all great athletes and very bright students.
What drives you to keep going when it’s really tough?
Haha, well, I would have to say it’s ice cream. Nothing really like getting a bowl or a cone when life gets stressful.
How should people connect with you?
You can find more about me on my website or you can visit my LinkedIn.