Each month, the Arrowhead Park Association features one of its members. Enjoy reading about your neighbor on Beaver Creek Circle.
In 1957, the late John F. Savage started Savage and Associates with a belief in people and the difference they can make in others’ lives. Before beginning the company, Mr. Savage was a teacher at Central Catholic High School. He was a big basketball fan and believed that championship teams are built through a solid defense. He used that same philosophy when it came to his clients’ personal financial planning.
John Savage was ahead of his time – he could see where the industry was headed, and began to do total financial planning in the 1970s before most. His sports philosophy of building a strong defense was used in that same method around the bank account, insurance and investments. The three sets of three illuminated circles hanging dramatically from the ceiling in the lobby, and viewable from I-475, represent these three essentials. The circles were placed as a tribute to John when the new building was constructed. In the early 1980s, the company added group benefits and later added securities and investments.
Savage has seen steady growth since Mr. Savage’s brother, Bob, became the second team member and the first “associate.” Since then, the company prefers to bring in staff right out of college. Those young professionals begin growing their business, and stay long term. “Many people have been with Savage for 20-25 years plus,” shared Savage financial representative Scott Walsh. “I just reached 33 years myself.” For years the company had seven equal partners. Recently they added nine new partners, ensuring more longevity.
“We are trying to set up something that will last another 60-70 years,” said J.R. Toland, president and CEO, Savage. The leadership continues to create an environment where the advisors can make a dramatic difference in their clients’ lives. “The company vision is to make a difference in the lives that we serve,” shared Mr. Toland. “The leadership serves the team by providing a great work environment and many tools so they can serve their clients well.”
John Savage’s last words were “keep it going” and that’s what Savage is striving to do every day.
There are about 125 associates who report to the Maumee office. Each advisor/consultant is an independent contractor and hires their own staff. In addition, Savage has three additional northwest Ohio locations in Bowling Green, Findlay and Glandorf.
“Our advisors work for their clients, not for Savage,” added Mr. Walsh. “They can use any tools out there to serve them best.”
Savage serves both individuals and businesses. Investments, insurance, and health insurance are part of individuals’ services. Business Planning services include group benefits, investments, business continuation/succession, wellness, and human resources support. Representatives can utilize any carriers to get the best plans for their clients. With the large team of experienced professionals and a vast client list, a wealth of knowledge is present in the building. Savage represents 1,200 companies from the health insurance side alone.
Joel Tschantz works with individuals on retirement planning at Savage.
“We try to teach them that retirement planning is a whole different animal when you are moving close to retiring,” shared Mr. Tschantz. “The accumulation stage is very different from the ‘use the money’ stage. There are many pieces to navigate: health insurance, Medicare, social security, long-term care, and estate planning. Education is a big part of our service. Our planning helps customers realize their dreams and adds a lot of value. You know you are really in the business when you help change someone’s life. Because of our work, the situation is better for the family and future. Our planning is a work of passion, not just a job. It is so gratifying. You start with ‘a job,’ but seeing the life-changing events makes you realize that it is more than a job.”
Part of the Community
The Savage Foundation has an annual signature event. Since its inception, the Savage Foundation Golf Classic, led by Savage investment advisor representative Kelly Savage, has raised more than $1.2 million. Employees can invite charities to the foundation to apply for funds. The foundation committee interviews and later decides which companies get the funds. They typically are local charities, so the donation makes a big difference.
“Seeing the checks go to the charities at the end of the golf outing is so fulfilling!” commented Mr. Walsh.
As a company, Savage takes on projects to get the employees involved. They have packed backpacks, prepared meals, and installed smoke detectors, to name a few activities. During the holidays, they work with a local church to assist the underserved. Last season they adopted 16 families and 24 single women.
“The employees really kick in, and we enjoy wrapping gifts and planning it together,” contributed Mr. Tschantz.
Savage moved into Arrowhead Park two years ago.
“We saw the land and thought it was perfect for what we wanted to do,” stated Mr. Toland. “Now that we are here, we find that our customers love how easy it is to get here.”
We’re glad you’re here in the park, Savage and Associates!