What do you enjoy most about wealth management?
Empowering clients to use their money in a way that is meaningful to them.
What’s the biggest challenge?
Maintaining the context of each client’s situation in my head and heart; moving from one client to another without losing a connection to their mindset.
What do you love most about being part of Aspiriant?
The warm and friendly atmosphere.
What professional accomplishments are you most proud of?
Building a career that, like a tapestry, makes the most of the threads of earlier experiences.
Guiding clients to accomplish philanthropic goals more impactful than they had previously imagined possible.
What quality of yours makes you best suited to what you do?
Being able to see a client’s situation from their point of view.
How should people think about their wealth?
Like fuel that keeps the engine running, not the decider of the car’s destination.
What do you love to do outside of work?
Yoga and Qigong, listening to NPR, singing and playing the guitar, cycling with my daughter, cooking and exploring new restaurants.
What would you be doing if you weren’t working for Aspiriant?
Being a teacher or healer of some kind.
Please list 3-5 career highlights, or the most important entries from your professional resume.
Wall Street attorney (Simpson Thacher & Bartlett), business executive (HBO), professional actor, family caregiver and wealth coach (The Glowacki Group).
Please recap your education and accreditation.
- Yale University, BA in Political Science, cum laude
- U. of Michigan Law School, JD, cum laude
- U. of Santa Monica, MA, Spiritual Psychology
- Member of Bar of California, New York and Maryland
- Member, Financial Planning Association of Los Angeles
What personal accomplishments are you most proud of?
Raising my 15 year old daughter with my wife Robynn.
Don joined Aspiriant as Director of Wealth Management in April 2016 when The Glowacki Group (TGG) merged with Aspiriant. Integrating life coaching and financial planning, Don helps clients to articulate, clarify and prioritize their personal values, visions and goals, and to plan a future in alignment with those goals. Don has discovered that by understanding each client’s story and perception of money, he can be a more effective advisor and confidant of their capital.
Don has over 30 years of legal, financial and coaching experience. Don served for 12 years as Senior Financial Planner and Capital Confidant at TGG, where he was instrumental in developing TGG’s unique Capital Confidant Approach TM for working with affluent and ultra-affluent clients.
His professional experience has involved retirement planning, tax planning, estate planning, philanthropic planning, cash flow management and special projects. He has a special interest in working with inheritors and teaching children about money. In the course of his career, Don has worked on Wall Street as a corporate attorney and a consultant on turnaround situations for several businesses. He’s also been a professional actor, appearing in theater, film and television — including a film that won an Oscar Award® in 2000 for Best Live Action Short Subject.
Don earned his undergraduate degree from Yale University, his law degree from the University of Michigan and his Masters degree in Spiritual Psychology from the University of Santa Monica. He is an active member of the Bar Associations in California and New York. He is also a member of the Financial Planning Association and the Nazrudin Project, a community of financial advisors who include consideration of the human side of money as part of their work.In addition to his professional work, Don serves as a member of the Board of Directors of the Pennington Dance Group, a modern dance troupe in Pasadena, and as President of The Walter & Lillian Gettinger Foundation, a private family foundation. He has been married to Robynn Abrams since 1993 and lives in Santa Monica, California. He and his wife have one daughter, Jianjia.