Small Kennewick financial firm values personal relationships

Professional Investment Management Services celebrates 20 years in business in 2020

A Kennewick independent boutique investment advisory firm is closing in on 20 years of business next year.

That’s the case for Professional Investment Management Services, or PIMS for short, at 7103 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite B, upstairs in the new Copiers Northwest Building in Kennewick.

It’s a three-person shop, owned by Garrick Russell, who is also the investment advisor representative.

Nicki Kennedy is the office manager and financial assistant, and executive assistant Kiarra Tow runs the front desk.

The secret to lasting so long in a competitive business is the personal attention and services that PIMS gives each customer, and the company pairs that care with the financial security of several financial institutions, Russell said.

“I love working with neighbors, friends and clients, helping them figure out their life steps, whether it’s making sure their child can go to college, or they want to retire,” Russell said. “We are their trusted person. We like to fill in those pieces of the puzzle for them. And we love serving the community.”

The company dives head first into community involvement.

“We try to be super active in the community,” Russell said. “I was heavily involved in the Gesa Carousel of Dreams from 2015-17. We’re involved with the Pasco Soup crowdfunding dinner, where we’re presented five ideas while having soup, and then the group picks an idea to fund.”

PIMS also has always been a strong supporter of the Tri-City Americans hockey team.

Kennedy also is involved in the community, volunteering for the March of Dimes, or Wishing Star, graduating as a member of Tri-Cities Leadership Class 21, or as a supportive mother for the Junior Falcons of the Columbia Basin Youth Football League.

By being out and involved in the community, Russell and Kennedy are easily accessible to their clients, while at the same time fulfilling their own needs to help improve the Tri-City community.

Russell graduated from the University of Washington in 1997.

“My dad, Robert Russell, is an accountant,” Garrick said. “My dad convinced me to come back here in 1999. He had started a financial planning firm. In 2003, we split the business. I rented the front office, and took care of the investment part of the business. In 2005, we moved next door (to a strip mall on Clearwater). We were there until June of 2019, when we moved into this new building.”

Kennedy joined Russell three years ago.

They’ve developed a relaxed atmosphere with their clientele. Depending which client they see that day, they’ll do what they need to make that investor feel at ease. That means bringing the entire family into the office, if needed.

For Russell, if it also means wearing a suit and tie one day, then working in a hoodie the next, so be it.

“I think our clients dictate things like that,” Kennedy said. “There are days, and clients, where we know we need to dress up. You play to your clients. We’ll come in more relaxed and casual if that makes them comfortable. We’re part of their family. And as the years go on, we get more comfortable with each other.”

Russell said PIMS usually doesn’t get many customers coming in off the street or from cold calls.

“Our business is almost 100 percent referrals,” he said. “And 30 percent have been here since day 1, or the first couple of years. When I was younger, it was tough to get clients.”

But over the years, PIMS’ reputation through word of mouth has brought in more clients.

PIMS makes sure it gives clients plenty of time and education.

“We want our clients to understand what we are trying to accomplish,” Russell said. “We spend time with them, and they understand there are also pitfalls.”

Kennedy said she has learned to love the relationships with the clients.

“I get up every morning, check the stock market, then check the calendar to see who we’re meeting with that day,” she said. “It might be a couple who we haven’t seen in three months. I’ll get so excited because they just had a grandson. Or maybe it’s a couple who pulled money out for a new house, and I’ll want to see the pictures of the house.”

Closing in on 20 years of business come April, Russell and Kennedy have had plenty of success stories.

“Our success stories are when somebody retires, and we help them get there,” he said. “We love seeing people’s big life events come to fruition. And we get to help them get to those life goals.”

Kennedy gets a lift when she sees parents pass on their trust of PIMS to their kids.

“When we bring in a client, I think it means a lot when we sign their kids,” she said. “We’ve built that relationship with their beneficiaries. It shows they have a lot of confidence and trust with us.”

Both Russell and Kennedy expect to be around well after the 20th anniversary of the company.

“If you’re a client, you’re going to get Garrick 24-7,” Kennedy said. “And in five years down the road, we’ll still be helping our community. Garrick is the same person you see inside these walls as you see him outside.”

Professional Investment Management Services: 7103 W. Clearwater Ave., Suite B; Kennewick; poweredbypims.com; 866-735-7467.

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