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Learning to embrace the next phase

BDK.Lucy

Brian Kilb with his granddaughter, Lucy

(Note: After more than 25 years at Landaas & Company, Brian Kilb is retiring. Below is a message he sent to his clients announcing his move. We share it in its entirety not only to pass along the news but to relate the wisdom of his sentiments.)

For most of my adult life, I have helped people prepare for the day when they would no longer be identified by their work. Now it’s my day to retire from Landaas & Company and the financial services industry.

Funny thing, the day after I let leadership know I would be moving on, my wife asked me if we would “be OK” financially. See, we’re no different than you are. We have the same worries, concerns and uncertainties. I revisited some of the basic retirement income analysis tools we commonly use and hopefully put her mind at rest. I am confident we’ll “be OK” because I have done my homework. We had a number, we saved to that number, and if we live within our means, I’m confident we’ll be just fine.

Please know that you have taught me over the years that retirement isn’t just about being financially secure. While I hope I have helped you find some confidence in your financial stability, many of you have shown me how to embrace this next phase and continue to find quality in your lives. You have shown me firsthand what it means to live life to the fullest in retirement. I have enough pictures of fishing boats, campers, collectible cars and trips from all parts of the world to remind me what lies ahead. Thank you for showing me the way.

I have read that the number one thing married couples argue about is money. If over the years we have moved that one item farther down your list, then I’ll take satisfaction in that. I learned a long time ago that money gives you flexibility, offers security and should be taken seriously. But also, that it doesn’t make you happy. Trite perhaps, but so very true. I have seen way too many people who have let their concerns about money ruin their quality of life. Have a plan. Execute the plan. Quit worrying about money. Markets will rise and fall. If you do the work, you’ll be just fine. (I’m still giving advice.  Sorry).

The last few years with Chris and Lisa have been the absolute best. If you ever worked with people you knew were smarter than you, anticipated your every move, covered your insufficiencies and cared deeply about the quality of their work, then you know how I feel. I know it isn’t always that way, so I feel blessed that my final years were spent with these two. I also have a whole Rolodex, I mean iPhone, of current peers and former colleagues that will fill my breakfast (and maybe cocktail) hours in the months ahead. I’m grateful for every moment one of them took to help me question and understand more about the world around us.

I also want to say out loud how much I recognize the sacrifices my wife, Lynn, and our daughters Kenzie and Sheila have made over the years. There were times in the early days when I often came home after Lynnie, who produced the 10 p.m. news at WTMJ. Work often played an outsized role in my life, and these three often paid the price. But they also taught me what really matters most, and although a bit late to the party, I did learn. I’m guessing now, with the extra time I’ll have, I can make up some of that lost time. Already, I hear the girls groaning. I’ll try not to overcompensate.

My profession was to give counsel on managing wealth.  But what I received from all of you was counsel on life. Thank you for allowing me to be part of your worlds and God’s blessings to you all.

Brian Kilb is senior vice president at Landaas & Company.

(initially posted Oct. 29, 2022)

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