June 4, 2020

Raymond James welcomes team managing more than $355 million in Virginia Beach, Virginia

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Raymond James recently welcomed financial advisors Tim Bellars, Claudia Bellars, CFP®, and Brad Harris to Raymond James Financial Services (RJFS) – the firm’s independent advisor channel – in Virginia Beach, Virginia, according to Shannon Reid, Northeast regional director for RJFS.

The team, which operates as Bellars Harris Wealth Management, joins from Merrill Lynch, where the advisors managed more than $355 million in client assets. Joining the advisors are Tim and Claudia’s son Axel Bellars, vice president of Bellars Harris Wealth Management and RJFS wealth manager, Jeannie Marie Hughes, client service manager, and Hughes’ daughter Laura Savage, client service associate.

“Raymond James is a very client- and advisor-centric firm, which is what we were really looking for in our next move,” said Claudia, partner at Bellars Harris Wealth Management and RJFS wealth manager. “With the firm’s focus on wealth management, we knew it was the best home not only for our clients and practice now, but also for the future of our practice. Axel and Laura are the next generation of our practice, and we’re pleased to have access to the resources – from succession planning, to wealth planning and more – to help us, and eventually them, continue to grow our business. We want our family to work for our clients’ families, and we feel like we have found the best partner to help us do just that.”

“The resources at Raymond James have made transitioning, even during a global pandemic, as easy as possible,” said Tim, partner at Bellars Harris Wealth Management and RJFS wealth manager. “Raymond James offered us a full spectrum of support on all aspects of our move, from the beginning stages of facilitating real estate connections, helping us find a new office location, to the integrated technology and tools like eSignature that have been incredibly helpful as we onboard clients.”

Tim has been in the financial services industry since 1987 and worked at multiple firms, including UBS and Merrill Lynch. He is a graduate of the Industrial and Labor Relations School of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.

Claudia began her financial services career in 1985 in banking. She transitioned to the investment advisory business with Paine Webber in 1992 (later acquired by UBS), and in 2008 joined Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, where she remained until joining Raymond James. Claudia is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNERTM professional. She earned her bachelor's degree from the University of South Carolina, with a major in finance.

Prior to Raymond James, Harris, partner at Bellars Harris Wealth Management and RJFS wealth manager, was with Merrill Lynch for 15 years, where he held the positions of first vice president, wealth management; senior financial advisor; and portfolio advisor. Earlier in his career, he was a financial advisor and assistant vice president at Paine Webber/UBS in Norfolk, Virginia. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Virginia and an MBA from Old Dominion University.

Axel Bellars, vice president of Bellars Harris Wealth Management and RJFS wealth manager, worked at Merrill Lynch as a financial advisor as part of the Bellars Harris Wealth Management Group, where he had worked since 2018. He earned a bachelor’s degree in finance from George Mason University.

Hughes has more than 41 years of experience in the financial services industry. She began her career in 1978 as a receptionist at Wheat First Securities and quickly moved to sales assistant. Her later experience includes Kidder Peabody, where she was sales assistant to a producing branch manager, and PaineWebber, where she served as a sales assistant. She started working with Claudia in 1992.

Prior to moving with the team to Raymond James, Savage was a client associate at Merrill Lynch. Previously, she worked for another wealth management firm in Virginia Beach as a client service associate.

“Tim, Claudia and Brad lead a forward-looking, truly multigenerational team, and I’m pleased that they found the resources Raymond James offers to be the perfect fit for them as they launch and grow their independent business,” said Reid. “The fact that they transitioned to independence, even in the midst of a pandemic, is a testament to the level of support we can provide so that advisors can spend time focusing on what matters most – their clients. We’re extremely proud to partner with them and welcome them to Raymond James.”

About Raymond James Financial Services
Raymond James Financial Services, Inc. is a financial services firm supporting independent financial advisors nationwide. Since 1974, Raymond James Financial Services Inc., member FINRA/SIPC, has provided a wide range of investment and wealth planning related services through its affiliate, Raymond James & Associates, Inc., member New York Stock Exchange/SIPC. Both broker/dealers are wholly owned subsidiaries of Raymond James Financial, Inc. (NYSE-RJF), a leading diversified financial services company with approximately 8,100 financial advisors throughout the United States, Canada and overseas. Total client assets are approximately $828 billion.

Securities offered through Raymond James Financial Services, Inc., member FINRA / SIPC. Investment advisory services offered through Raymond James Financial Services Advisors, Inc. Bellars Harris Wealth Management is not a registered broker/dealer and is independent of Raymond James Financial Services, Inc.

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP Logo Flame Design and CFP Logo Plaque Design in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.