Throughout his career, Jim Combs has become known for his ability to lead strategic initiatives to transform underperforming organizations into businesses with high performing teams of engaged employees, a strong risk management culture, and increased profit contribution.
He is able to quickly identify operational issues and risks, scale the business, establish strategic objectives, and effectively manage key change initiatives to enhance service quality, reduce risk, and improve operating efficiency. He brings extensive wealth management expertise, risk management acumen, strategic planning experience, and a proven track record of success implementing process re-engineering and quality management programs to increase enterprise value.
As Chief Executive Officer of National Advisors Holdings, Inc. (NAH) and its three affiliates, Jim is responsible for executing the strategy for providing expert trust services and solutions to trusted advisors and the families they serve. The companies serve a nationwide network, comprised of more than 170 advisory firms, with $10 billion of client assets under administration and located in 45 states. The company primarily distributes its services through five financial services intermediary channels: Registered Investment Advisors, banks and independent trust companies, CPA's, law firms, and family offices. Prior to joining NAH, Jim served in a variety of leadership roles in the financial services industry. He has developed extensive professional experience in the fields of operations and information technology management, product management, enterprise project management, merger and acquisitions, and talent management.
After serving five years on active duty as a commissioned officer in the United States Army, Jim started his financial services career in treasury management services with Bankers Trust Company of NY. During that time, he played a key role in the formation of a joint venture with First Fidelity Bank to provide outsourced treasury management services to agency and community banks. Jim was part of the executive team responsible for designing and implementing the business and operating models that formed Global Processing Alliance, Inc. in an eighteen month period. Jim used this experience to transition to the wealth management side of the business by accepting a senior management position at Wachovia Bank.
As a Group Executive from 1994-2001, he lead numerous large scale change programs and merger and acquisition projects to improve the service capabilities and financial performance of the bank. These projects improved the profitability of the wealth business by 10%, enabled the successful wealth management technology transition for Y2K, and generated operating efficiencies totaling $38 million for Wachovia Operational Services Corporation. Upon leaving Wachovia, Jim accepted a position with SEI Investments as a product manager for the Private Banking and Trust division which generated 33% of the company's total revenue. During his tenure, he developed a range of new products and services in taking the business up market which doubled the size of the outsourcing business in a period of seven years.
He joined Wilmington Trust Company in 2008 as the Trust and Custody Services executive where he lead the Trust Service Excellence initiative and integration projects for two merger and acquisition projects which reduced combined operating expenses by more than 25%. In 2011, he returned to SEI as Chief Operating Officer for the Investment Manager business where he initiated a series of operational and organizational changes to streamline fund services. Serving the community is important to Jim and his family. He serves on the Board of Directors for the Heartland chapter of United States Lacrosse, Kansas City Youth Lacrosse League, and the West Point Society of Greater Kansas City.
He is a parishioner at Visitation parish and a member of the Knights of Columbus. His passions include coaching youth lacrosse, honoring the service of veterans of the armed forces of the United States of America, bird hunting, and spending time with family while enjoying Kansas City's food and entertainment scene. Jim is a graduate of the United States Military Academy at West Point, Class of 1983. He earned an MSE in the Management of Technology from the University of Pennsylvania Wharton School of Business and School of Engineering and Applied Sciences in 2005.