BY ANDREA PALMER
Andrew Cooper and Justyn Volesko are the
managing partners and namesakes of A.J. Wealth,
an asset management firm headquartered in New
York City, with a home office in Mechanicville.
The partners started their career at Ayco, a Goldman
Sachs company that has an office in Saratoga
Springs. The partners began in Parsippany, N.J.,
then transferred to the Goldman Sachs family office
in New York City. There, they were account managers
working with the partners of Goldman Sachs
providing family-office-type financial counseling.
Frank J. Fazio is the firm’s chief investment
officer. “At Goldman Sachs, they offered the full
menu, the full suite of estate planning, income tax
planning, property and life insurance planning–
very in-depth financial planning concepts for the
Goldman Sachs partners,” he said.
In May of 2012, Cooper and Volesko decided to
break away from Goldman Sachs and form their
“There were partners were leaving the firm of
Goldman Sachs and wanted to continue working
with both Cooper and Volesko, and the firm
was not allowing them to continue working with
the partners who were leaving. That’s when they
decided to branch out and start their own firm,
where they could provide the level and depth of
financial counseling that was appropriate for their
clients,” Fazio said.
“Since then, we have grown to over 100 clients
over a number of different industries. The beginnings
of our client base came from the Goldman
Sachs partners who started their own financial
firms, but through word of mouth and referrals,
we have branched out. We have a fairly large client
base of business owners and corporate executives,
as well as those in the financial services industry.”
Fazio met Cooper and Volesko while working
at Ayco in New Jersey in 2007. Fazio was starting a new regional investment position with the firm.
Previously, the investment group was solely located
in Latham. Cooper and Volesko transferred to Goldman
Sachs in New York City, but the three men
kept in touch. Fazio was contacted by the partners
last year as the firm was growing and taking on
“They wanted to pick my brain for different
investment ideas and different strategies they
should be considering. As I was helping them
along on more of a consulting basis, they offered
me the position of chief investment officer with
A.J. Wealth,” Fazio said.
Fazio runs the asset management side of the
firm. “I am directly responsible for managing client
assets and rebalancing portfolios. Right now we
have over $300 million in assets under management,
primarily through Charles Schwab. We also
have custody assets through Fidelity,” he said.
Cooper and Volesko spend their time at the firm’s
headquarters in Lower Manhattan, in the financial
district a block from the New York Stock Exchange.
Fazio operates a home office out of Mechanicville.
“We are looking to expand our footprint and client base into Upstate New York. Most of our clients
are located in the New York metro area, as well as
San Francisco. Given my background and roots
in Upstate New York, we are seeking to offer our
services to higher net-worth clientele in the Albany,
Saratoga and Glens Falls metro area,” said Fazio.
“Our investment minimum is $500,000 in terms
of our smallest account size we manage. On average,
the accounts we manage are around $1-$2
million,” Fazio said.
“We focus on asset management. That is my specialty.
We really run the gamut of the full menu of
financial planning services. It’s asset management.
It’s tax planning–from the most simplistic to the
most complex tax planning and ideas.
“The focus is asset management, but there’s a lot
we can do. We offer very intense financial counseling
services for a consulting fee, as well as any sort
of fee that comes along with the asset management
side. We wear a lot of different hats here. We don’t
just focus on one area–we try to specialize in really
every area of the financial services business.”
Frank J. Fazio III can be reached at email@example.com.
Photo Courtesy A. J. Wealth