Designations and Certifications

CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM (CFP®) - The CFP® marks identify those individuals who have met the rigorous experience and ethical requirements of the CFP Board, have successfully completed financial planning coursework and have passed the CFP® Certification Examination covering the following areas:  the financial planning process, risk management, investments, tax planning and management, retirement and employee benefits, and estate planning.  CFP® professionals also agree to meet ongoing continuing education requirements and to uphold CFP Board’s Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility, Rules of Conduct and Financial Planning Practice Standards.

CFP Board is a nonprofit certification organization with a mission to benefit the public by granting the CFP® certification and upholding it as the recognized standard of excellence for personal financial planning.  CFP Board owns the certification marks CFP®, Certified Financial Planner™ and federally registered CFP (with plaque design) and CFP (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete initial and ongoing certification requirements. 

Accredited Estate Planner (AEP®) - The AEP® designation is the only graduate level multi-disciplinary accreditation that focuses specifically on estate planning. It emphasizes multiple disciplines, including law, accounting, insurance, financial planning, and trust services. The Accredited Estate Planner® brings together these diverse areas of practice into one personalized plan to assure your family’s financial well-being. You should have the highest degree of confidence that an AEP® possesses expertise, experience, multi-disciplinary focus, and a strict code of ethics. These qualities will provide you the peace of mind that only comes through expert estate planning services.

An AEP® designee provides quality professional advice, and meets the highest standards knowledge, skill, ethical conduct, and experience in estate planning. An AEP® can:

  1. Offer advice and prepare a personalized plan to help accumulate, preserve, and transfer your estate according to your objectives.
  2. Explain all of the complex estate, tax, and personal planning issues regarding your individual, retirement, and business assets.
  3. Provide personal, customized advice with respect to all of your estate and tax planning needs.
  4. Encourage the team concept of estate planning and coordinate the services of all of your professional advisors (and refer additional professionals to round out your team) to provide a comprehensive estate plan suitable to your needs.

Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC®) -  is a mark of excellence for almost thirty years and currently requires nine college-level courses, the  most of any financial planning credential. Average study time to earn the ChFC® exceeds 450 hours.  Required courses cover extensive education and application training in financial planning, income taxation, investments, and estate and retirement planning. Additional electives are chosen from such topics as macroeconomics, financial decisions for retirement, and executive compensation. ChFC® designees must meet experience requirements and adhere to continuing education and ethical standards. The credential is awarded by The American College, a non-profit educator founded in 1927 and the  highest level of academic accreditation.

Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU®) - The Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU®) designation has long been recognized as the fundamental and foremost educational credential for life insurance professionals. Since 1927, more than 94,000 individuals have earned their CLU®, helping them build a successful life insurance practice by providing clients with knowledgeable and ethical advice. For financial representatives, field management, home office personnel, and others involved in providing life insurance products to the public, the CLU® designation symbolizes continuing growth and commitment to professionalism.

Chartered Advisor in Philanthropy (CAP®) - Those enrolled in CAP® are highly successful advisors and fundraisers who are taking their already high-achieving career to another plane. Having learned earlier in their career to plan for client needs, or having learned how to raise significant funds, these advisors and gift planners take CAP® to provide a higher level of service to their donor/clients, and to help advance philanthropy in their local communities. CAP®s become members of a growing network of top planners who are working to make our towns and cities better places to live for generations to come.

Awards and Recognition

Million Dollar Round Table Qualifying Member 2015-2018

MDRT is the premier association of financial professionals. MDRT status designation is granted for one year and members must apply every year to continue their affiliation with the MDRT

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National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors Quality Award 2015

Award recognizing commitment to excellence in service to clients and industry

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Zach Esplund, CFP®, ChFC®, CLU®, CAP®, RICP®
Wealth Management Advisor

Physicians Nationwide


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