Joseph A. Tomlinson, FSA, CFP independent voice and advocate for investment clients
"The industry needs to do a much better job meeting the needs of clients. I am beginning to make my voice heard as an advocate for simpler, understandable, lower cost products that directly meet the needs of clients."                                                                        
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Joe Tomlinson is both an actuary and a financial planner. He began his business career by training as an actuary and spent 25 years working for John Hancock Financial Services in a variety of investment and actuarial jobs. He completed his career there as vice president in charge of the annuity business. While at John Hancock, he also served on the boards of two investment subsidiaries, and was an active member of the committees responsible for choosing investment managers for the company's 401(k) plan and for the company's variable insurance and annuity products.

Ten years ago Joe decided to make a career move to work more directly with clients. He went through the education and examination process to become a Certified Financial Planner practitioner, and then set up Tomlinson Financial Planning, LLC. His focus as a planner has been on retirement planning working with retirees and others approaching retirement.  "I've learned a lot by working with clients, and in the past few years I've tried to combine that experience with my actuarial background and get more involved in doing research. I continue to work with clients, but I now spend more time on research."

Mr. Tomlinson is a member of the Society of Actuaries Committee on Post-Retirement Needs and Risks and is active on a number of the group's projects. He is chair of the subgroup on "Decisions at Retirement." His particular interests are: building better retirement products, improving the way retirement planning works, and advocating for changes to the retirement structure of 401(k)'s, IRA's, etc. so that retirement systems do a much better job meeting the needs of participants.

Joe lives in the small town of Greenville, Maine with his wife Suzan, who is from Great Britain, and they enjoy a variety of outdoor activities including fly fishing, canoeing, hiking, snowshoeing, and cross country skiing. He is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Natural Resource Education Center, a non-profit corporation that promotes environmental education programs for children and adults. He and Suzan also spend quite a bit of time in Suzan's home in northwest England, where, among other things he has the opportunity to study financial planning and retirement systems in Britain and see what lessons can be applied in the United States.

Mr. Tomlinson is graduate of the University of Michigan and a member of Phi Beta Kappa. 

Joe Tomlinson        
  • Highly Credentialed Fellow of the Society of Actuaries

  • Certified Financial Planner

  • 25 years actuarial experience with the same global fortune 100 life insurance company.

Joe continues to work with clients, but now spends more time on research. He welcomes questions, comments and the opportunity to work with other research organizations.
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