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Christine Damico

Director of Human Capital, OLIO Financial Planning

When seeking their first professional job, academically trained financial planners often face a dilemma. Employers want new hires with experience, but newbies have no experience because few will hire them. A creative solution to the problem is a paid residency, which combines a real job with training for a specific length of time. Christine Damico, 32, has been a strong industry advocate for and speaker about these programs since spending four years as a resident at Cornerstone Wealth Advisors in Minneapolis. Her time there was followed by a return to her native Virginia and a job at a financial planning firm in Tysons Corner. Two years later, she and partner Andrew Miller started their flat-fee planning firm in the Washington suburb and later acquired one in Blacksburg, Virginia, the home of Damico’s alma mater, Virginia Tech, where she is now an adjunct professor in addition to serving clients.

With students, Damico teaches the nuances of successful client interaction. “Through mock scenarios, we practice ways to make the personal connections necessary before a client will accept advice,” she said, noting that her firm has hired a fellow alumna of the school’s program — who also was her successor as a resident.

Evan Cooper