Aria executive team
David Stone, Chief Executive Officer
As former senior legal counsel to major life insurance companies, mutual funds and broker dealers, David has more than two decades of financial services experience as well as specific expertise in annuity product development and distribution.
Before co-founding Aria, David was chief legal counsel for all of Charles Schwab’s insurance and risk management initiatives. He was a member of the firm’s Insurance Services management team as well as a co-leader of a cross-enterprise internal team dedicated to building a series of Schwab-branded financial products to be wrapped with annuity guarantees.
Prior to Schwab, David was in-house counsel at Allstate Financial, where he served as lead counsel on numerous product development projects for broker dealers and bank distributors.
David is a frequent speaker at industry conferences as well as an active participant on numerous committees dedicated to retirement income product solutions.
R. Scott Strait, Chief Technology Advisor
Scott has an extensive record of IT leadership and strategic technology transformation within the financial services industry, most recently at Charles Schwab & Co. At Schwab, Scott was CTO, divisional CIO for the Schwab Institutional business serving independent financial advisors, and divisional CIO for the Schwab Investor Services business serving retail investors.
As head of Schwab Institutional Technology, Scott led the effort to build SchwabInstitutional.com and to support independent advisors as they adopted the Internet for the first time. He was also responsible for building the back-office tools used by Schwab to support the advisor business.
As CTO and head of retail technology, Scott drove the technology strategy to support cross-channel integration and develop a more client-facing experience as Schwab’s focus shifted from transaction-based to relationship-based. He led the complete rewrite of Schwab.com as well.
Prior to Schwab, Scott was with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Arthur Andersen, where he was a CPA.
Len Stecklow, Chief Distribution/Sales Officer
Responsible for directing company-wide sales and distribution efforts, Len brings a seasoned blend of corporate leadership and field experience to his role at Aria.
His previous tenure at Fidelity Investments spanned diverse positions over two decades. Most recently, he was president of the Private Wealth Management Group. In that capacity, Len oversaw major business units including the retail branch network, the Fidelity Active Trader Division, Portfolio Advisory Services and The Trust Division. He also held responsibility for all high–net worth retail clients as well as the premium phone services.
Len currently serves as the president/chief executive officer of Protected Investors of America, an independent broker dealer and Registered Investment Advisor headquartered in San Francisco. Securities offered through Aria will be cleared through Protected Investors.
Before that role, he was executive vice president for the Fidelity Retail Core Customer segment, where he oversaw the Fidelity call centers and an additional 4 million households with assets under $500,000. Len also served as a regional vice president and a regional sales manager in the branch network, and as a senior vice president for National Financial, the clearing and custody division for the Fidelity Institutional Brokerage Group.
Prior to joining Fidelity, Len was a Registered Investment Advisor and a retail broker. He is a CFP with Series 7, 8, 24 and 63 licenses.
Jay Miller, Chief Marketing Officer
Jay is one of the direct-marketing industry’s most notable entrepreneurs, having founded, funded, managed and grown four distinct and successful marketing companies. Three of those, under the TargetCom banner, were sold in 2004 to MDC, Canada’s largest marketing services holding company.
Under Jay’s leadership, TargetCom went from a one-man operation to the eighth-largest direct-response advertising agency in the United States, with more than $200 million in capitalized billings and an average year-over-year profitability growth of more than 225% over a 15-year period.
Throughout his career, Jay has successfully maximized marketing ROI for blue-chip clients and such iconic brands such as AARP, Aetna, Allstate, AT&T, Audi, Bally Total Fitness, BP Amoco, Bank of America, Blue Cross/Blue Shield USA/Florida/Illinois/Missouri, Harley-Davidson, Hilton, Marriott, New York Life, SBC, Sandoz, Searle, Sears, State Farm, United Airlines, Verizon and Wachovia.
He has taught marketing at DePaul University in Chicago. He also recently published “The Legend of Svet’s; Where Advertising Was Lost and Then Found,” a cautionary tale of what senior executives should expect if they don’t demand accountability from each marketing expenditure.
Neil Wilding, National Sales Manager
Neil is the senior vice president and national sales director for Aria Retirement Solutions. He leads sales, business development and operations for Aria, running its national sales office in Louisville, Kentucky.
A specialist in retirement income solutions, Neil has served on several industry panels focused on new and innovative ways to offer guaranteed income to current and future retirees. Before taking his executive role with Aria, he was the national sales manager for the Institutional Retirement Group of Genworth Financial, where he led sales and business development efforts for the advisor market.
Neil’s career has included time wholesaling annuities, mutual funds, and managed money in all channels of distribution with a specific focus on working with RIAs on how to incorporate guaranteed retirement-income solutions into a fee-only practice.