Tax Professionals


Andrea R. Hill, CPA


1527 19th Street , Suite 310

Bakersfield, California 93301

Phone: 661-843-7990

Fax: 661-206-0233





James O'Hearn, EA, MBA


1830 Truxtun Avenue Ste 216

Bakersfield, California 93301

Phone: (661) 637-1040





Paul Harman


707 18th Street

Bakersfield, CA 93301

Phone: (661) 213-9242



John R. Reedy


3434 Truxtun Avenue Ste 220

Bakersfield, CA 93301

Phone: (661) 325-9079



Christopher M. Dietrich


1401 19th Street, Suite 440

Bakersfield, California 93301

Phone: (661) 336-0344



Lance Howard Investments

Lance Howard Interview with Wayne Schmidt

Lance Howard Tax

Lance Howard Interview with
Nick Stovall

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About Lance Howard

Lance R. Howard

President and Founder, Howard Financial & Wealth Management, Inc.

Named one of the top five advisors nationwide, by Senior Market Advisor magazine in August of 2011, Lance has helped his clients and their families preserve assets, reduce taxes and get a better return on their money since 1991. Lance Howard is a financial advisor who believes that now, more than ever, it is vital to protect the downside when staying invested in the market. Lance emphasizes income planning using a comprehensive and coordinated approach as a key component to successful retirement planning.


A native Californian, Lance graduated from CSUB with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. He is a member of the Million Dollar Round Table, Top of the Table 2008, 2011, and 2012 and Court of the Table 2009, 2010, 2013 and 2014. He obtained his Series 65 license for Investment Advisor Representative in 2008. Lance belongs to the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (NAIFA), California Association of Health Underwriters (CAHU), Kern Association of Health Underwriters (KAHU) and the National Ethics Bureau (NEB). In February of 2014, Lance was named one of America’s Financial Leaders by Forbes Magazine. In addition, he is member of Ed Slott's Master Elite IRA Advisory Group. Lance believes in the importance of being involved and giving back to his community.

Mike Binger on Fox Business 7/20/12

Strategic Partners




Wayne Schmidt, CFA®, MBA

Chief Investment Officer, Gradient Investments, LLC.

In October 2008, Wayne Schmidt joined Gradient Investments, LLC and serves as Chief Investment Officer. With 26 years of investment experience, Wayne brings decades of institutional experience and in-depth knowledge of the private client market to Gradient Investments, and offers a global investment management perspective.

Wayne is an invaluable and direct resource for affiliated investment advisors and their clients. He provides vast wisdom, knowledge, experience and tools to help investment advisors grow their practice, while also growing clients' assets.

In a nationwide search that included acquisition considerations, AXA Investment Managers, a subsidiary of the European insurance giant AXA Group, handpicked Wayne to build their U.S investment grade fixed income capabilities and to lead a seasoned portfolio team located in St. Paul, Minnesota.

During his tenure at AXA Investment Managers, Wayne served as senior portfolio manager for the U.S. Investment Grade Fixed Income Team. As the lead portfolio manager, he managed $9.5 billion of fixed income assets with a variety of mandates ranging from aggregate, corporate and government bond portfolios.

Before joining AXA Investment Managers, Wayne dedicated over 20 years to Minnesota Life and its' $14 billion investment arm, Advantus Capital Management. As portfolio manager, he managed a variety of high-grade funds as part of Advantus's $1.8 billion Total Return Product for institutional and retail clients. He also served as the lead portfolio manager of the Advantus Bond Fund and the co-portfolio manager of the Advantus Spectrum Fund.

Wayne earned his Master of Business Administration in Finance from the University of Minnesota and a Bachelor of Science from Cornell University. He is a Chartered Financial Analyst® and a member of The Chartered Financial Analyst Institute and the Twin Cities Society of Security Analysts.

Over the years, Wayne has been quoted on the global economy in numerous nationally and internationally recognized investment publications such as Bloomberg, Pension & Investments, Reuters, The Los Angeles Times, Financial Week (2008 Neal Award Winner), Asia Times, InvestorVillage, Safehaven, SFO, Credit Investment News and RGE Monitor (Nouriel Roubini's Global EconoMonitorinvestment). He has also provided market insights on Bloomberg radio and television.

Wayne's love of Minnesota is Gradient Investments' great fortune, as he declined to relocate with AXA Investment Managers following their strategic decision to consolidate function into the high-yield operation in Greenwich, Connecticut.



Nick Stovall, CPA/PFSsm, MBA

Chief Tax Strategist, Gradient Tax, LLC.

Handpicked to serve as chief financial officer for Gradient Financial Group, LLC, Nick Stovall CPA/PFSSM, MBA boasts an extensive background in accounting, finance and investments. With over 20 years of experience, he brings decades of private industry accounting, public accounting, business taxation, IRA taxation, technical taxation, tax law and tax policy knowledge to the organization. Nick also holds his series 27, 7 and 66 as well as his life and health license. With an in-depth knowledge of the financial services industry and solid understanding of the complex demands of diverse business settings, his experience provides an invaluable perspective on the intricate relationships between tax and business issues.
During his tenure in the private industry sector, Nick served as the chief financial officer for Glenn Corporation and E Energy Adams. He has also consulted in the public sector serving individuals and businesses in the areas of financial and tax planning. Nick was an instructor with National American University, teaching upper division accounting courses and remains a mentor for aspiring accountants in the Twin Cities area.

Nick earned the Masters of Business Administration in Accounting from the University of St. Thomas and a Bachelor of Science in Finance where he graduated with distinction. In addition, he attended Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota for the Masters of Business Taxation.

Nick remains active in the accounting industry and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accountants (MnCPA) and the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). Nick is a member of Ed Slott’s Elite IRA Advisor Group.