Professional Designations

Wealth Advisor

Jay Leonard, CFA

Jay Leonard enjoys learning about the newest research and developments in the field of investment theory and portfolio construction, but his favorite part of the job is working with clients to help them plan for the future. He knows that understanding a client’s core values is critical to creating the right financial framework to achieve their most important goals.

As a wealth advisor at Buckingham Strategic Wealth, Jay provides advice on investment management and retirement planning. He believes it’s important to show his clients where they stand, what it takes to retire, and whether they may be saving too much or not enough. He leverages his extensive experience to help his clients define their objectives, and he stays with them to make mid-course adjustments as time passes and circumstances change. Jay believes that the firm’s investment approach gives his clients the best chance to get from where they are now to where they want to go.

Early in his career, as a securities analyst, Jay authored investment research reports, gave speeches and appeared on TV to make financial recommendations. But he never knew if anyone was actually benefiting from that brand of advice. Now, he sees the results of his investment management and financial counsel every day. He finds being a wealth advisor, and making a direct impact on people’s lives, much more satisfying.

Jay joined Buckingham through the firm’s 2015 merger with New Jersey-based Classic Capital, Inc., where he served as president and chief investment officer. Jay, who founded Classic Capital in 1989, has more than 40 years of experience as an investment professional. Prior to Classic Capital, when he worked as a securities analyst, it was on Wall Street primarily at Merrill Lynch.

A Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), Jay earned a bachelor’s degree with honors in economics from Brooklyn College of the City University of New York in 1965 and his MBA from the University of Chicago in 1967. A fencer in college, Jay a won a bronze medal at the NCAA Fencing Championships in his senior year and is a member Brooklyn College’s Athletic Hall of Fame.

Jay was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, and served in the U.S. Army Reserve. After living in Short Hills, N.J., for 37 years, he now splits his time between New York City and Sarasota, Florida. He has been married to his wife, Iris, for 45 years and has two children, Andrew and Emily. Outside of work, Jay has volunteered at his local food pantry and Habitat for Humanity.

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