INSURANCE & TAX ADVISOR TEAM
President, Insurance & Tax Planning Advisor
Rob is president and founding member of Westward Advisors. Rob started Westward in 1997 with an innovative approach to insurance-based tax and estate planning. Rob specializes in advanced markets for both individuals and company shareholders. Rob’s extensive knowledge of insurance products and underwriting processes has positioned him as a leading advisor in insurance-based tax and estate planning. Rob has 20 years experience as an advisor in the insurance industry. He is a member of the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners, the Financial Advisors Association of Canada, and the Canadian Association of Family Enterprise. Rob is an avid snowboarder and plays soccer competitively. Rob is married with two sons.
Wayne Stone CPA, CA, CFP. TEP, CLU
VP, Planning & Finance
Wayne specializes in life insurance planning for private business owners in the HNW and UHNW markets. He focuses on securing financial stability for their estates and maximizing the income tax benefits of life insurance that are available in the Income Tax Act. Wayne’s professional memberships include the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada (CPA, CA), the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (TEP), the Financial Planners Standards Council (CFP), the Institute (CLU), the Canadian Tax Foundation, the Estate Planning Council of Vancouver, and the Conference for Advanced Life Underwriting (CALU). Wayne is active on CALU committees including the Policyholder Taxation Group supporting the Board on its dialogue with the CRA and Finance regarding income tax issues affecting life insurance planning. Wayne travels frequently to clients in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal, and enjoys using his frequent flyer benefits for road cycling trips around the world.
STRATEGIC IMPLEMENTOR TEAM
Chief Operating Officer
Grant is a licensed insurance agent with over 20 years of experience in the financial services industry. He is pivotal in the organizational structure of the office and is responsible for seeing all corporate projects through to completion. Grant was instrumental developing The LifeStep Process and is also heavily involved in The Strategic Implementor stage, liaising with clients and managing their file through the underwriting process. Outside of work Grant is a soccer enthusiast, and enjoys travelling with his wife, son and daughter.
STRATEGIC ALLIANCES TEAM
Insurance & Estate Planning Advisor
Pierre is an independent life insurance advisor based in Montréal who operates an insurance planning practice recognized for its ability to serve the unique needs of entrepreneurs. Pierre began his career in 1980 and has established deep-rooted connections with Québec business leaders who trust his knowledge of insurance products and his ability to make complex concepts clear. Together, Pierre and Westward have implemented tax efficient estate plans that benefit the long-term needs of many Quebec entrepreneurs and their families. Pierre is an outdoorsman at heart. For relaxation, he enjoys mountain trekking and any activities that connect him with nature.
Insurance & Estate Planning Advisor
Warren is an owner and senior advisor at Cove Continuity Advisors in North Vancouver. His unique abilities involve asking questions, doing extensive research, pondering the solutions and providing detailed explanations about alternative approaches. Warren is right at home when there is an abundance of data to work with and enjoys sharing his finding with others. Together, Warren and Westward have implemented tax efficient estate plans that benefit the long-term needs of high net worth entrepreneurs and their families. Warren lives in North Vancouver with his wife and two young children and enjoys tennis, trail running, and just about anything that gets him outdoors with his family.
PERFORMANCE OPTIMIZER TEAM
Mai Furuhashi CFP
Senior Insurance Manager
As the lead of The Performance Optimizer team, she is responsible for making sure that clients’ life insurance plans stay on track. Her work begins after The Strategic Implementor stage when she loads a recently implemented plan into Westward’s proprietary Performance Optimizer tools to monitor, manage and maintain the plan. Mai and her team then use the Performance Optimizer tools to execute annual plan maintenance and reporting. Mai takes on special projects when plans require customization. She obtained a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Guelph, and is a Certified Financial Planner. Mai was born in Nagoya, Japan and regularly returns with her husband and son to visit family and friends. She is also an accomplished flamenco dancer who performs regularly in Vancouver.
Senior Insurance & Credit Analyst
As the manager of the Bank Loan Program, Vivian brings extensive knowledge of insurance and accounting practices to the Performance Optimizer team. Having originally joined the Westward team as an Account Manager, Vivian transitioned to take on special projects and became the Bank Loan Program manager through her dedicated focus on quality and creative problem-solving skills. She has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Electrical Engineering from The University of British Columbia and has completed the Chartered Financial Analyst Level 2 examination. Outside of work Vivian is a sports enthusiast, participating in half marathons around the world and an avid watcher of live NBA and NFL games. She is also a certified yoga instructor and enjoys challenging herself through various fitness classes.
Harjot’s insurance experience and administrative skills enable her to apply the Performance Optimizer process to her clients and advisors with precision and accuracy. She came to Westward in 2007 shortly after earning a degree in administrative studies from York University. Four years later she joined The Performance Optimizer team where her organizational skills and initiative for improving process efficiency have proven of great benefit to the team and Westward’s clients. Harjot keeps everything on track, both at work and as the mother of two very active young daughters.
Mike Blaney CFP
Mike brings more than 10 years of insurance and underwriting experience to the Performance Optimizer process. He applies professionalism and accuracy when dealing with clients and advisors. He has been with Westward since 2013 and also provides back up support for the underwriting process. Mike is an avid music enthusiast and world traveller.