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Michael Rom Profile Pic - Website

Blue Prairie Group Adds Industry Veteran Michael Rom

Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”) is pleased to announce the addition of industry veteran Michael Rom and his firm, PENSION INSIGHT, to its network of retirement consultants. Mr. Rom will lead the San Francisco office of Blue Prairie Group and will maintain an independent business model. Click here to read the full press release.


Carmela Elco Earns Exclusive CBFA Certification

Blue Prairie Group’s Carmela Elco, Managing Director and Senior ERISA Consultant, has recently become a Certified Behavioral Finance Analyst (CBFA). With this certification, Carmela became one of a select few who is qualified to work with plan sponsors to assess the behavioral health of their retirement plans, implement a tailored set of recommendations for improvement, and then measure success overtime using the PlanSuccess System. Carmela is the second consultant from Blue Prairie Group to earn this designation – Paul Sommerstad, ERISA Consultant, received the designation last year. Please click here to read the full press release.

Blue Prarie Group: Carmela Elco photographed in Chicago, IL. June 17, 2014. Photo by Andrew Collings.

Blue Prarie Group: Carmela Elco photographed in Chicago, IL. June 17, 2014. Photo by Andrew Collings.

Carmela Elco Named to NAPA’s Top Women Advisors

Chicago, IL – Blue Prairie Group’s Carmela Elco, Managing Director and Senior ERISA Consultant, was named as one of the top Women Advisors in the country by the National Association of Plan Advisors(NAPA). According to NAPA, this list recognizes leaders among the growing number of women “making significant contributions to this field” and who are “in a league of their own.” Carmela was selected frommore than 450 nominees who were voted on by roughly 12,500 industry professionals. “I am so pleased to be named by NAPA as one of the MVP Top Women Advisors in the country. This recognition is [ read more ]


Gary Silverman, partner, WM practice leader and our CIO, was named a five-star manager

Gary Silverman, Blue Prairie Group’s Chief Investment Officer and Wealth Management Practice leader was recognized by Chicago Magazine as a Five Star Wealth Manager. The nomination process relied on one of three sources – firm nomination, peer nomination and pre-qualification based on industry standing – to identify award candidates. Each award candidate was evaluated against 10 objective criteria such as client retention rates, client assets administered and a favorable regulatory and complaint history.

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Business Teamwork Puzzle Pieces

BPG Announces a Partnership with First Bankers Trust Services

BLUE PRAIRIE GROUP ANNOUNCES A PARTNERSHIP WITH FIRST BANKERS TRUST SERVICES Chicago, IL – August 3, 2015 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce a partnership with First Bankers Trust Services (“FBTS”) to provide FBTS’ clients with enhanced investment research expertise, improved client reporting capabilities, and a state-of-the-art technology platform. Leveraging Blue Prairie’s in-house, CFA-led investment research team and proprietary investment databases, First Bankers Trust Services will be rolling out an array of enhanced reporting and due diligence capabilities in the upcoming quarters including: Quarterly Investment Monitoring Reports, an annual Plan Health Report, Stable Value Due [ read more ]


Carmela Elco Named as Delegate to NAPA DC Fly-In Forum

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Philadelphia —Carmela Elco of Blue Prairie Group was selected as a delegate to the National Association of Plan Advisors’ (NAPA) DC Fly-In Forum, an exclusive gathering of the nation’s leading retirement plan advisors. As a forum delegate, Carmela met in Washington, D.C. to listen to and brief top congressional leaders about the importance and future of the nation’s workplace retirement plans, and, as advocates for the employers and participants they work with, shared how proposed laws and regulations might impact American workers’ retirement security. Carmela, a member of NAPA, is one of approximately 200 delegates who participated [ read more ]

Blue Prarie Group: Carmela Elco photographed in Chicago, IL. June 17, 2014. Photo by Andrew Collings.

Leadership 500 Excellence Award 2015

BPG Makes Leadership 500 List for Excellence in Staff Development

Chicago, IL – Blue Prairie Group LLC is pleased to announce that it received the Leadership 500 Excellence Award for outstanding achievements in leadership and staff development programming. The company is a 2015 Top 10 Finalist in the Leadership Excellence Awards Program, Small Company category for its high impact, “Staff Development, the Key to Company Growth” program. Leadership 500 Excellence Award winners were announced March 31 at a Lead500 conference in Dallas, keynoted by former President Bill Clinton. The award recipients were judged by a panel of leadership experts and selected based on an application and nomination process, as well [ read more ]


BPG Earns CEFEX Certification for Fiduciary Excellence

Chicago, IL – April 29, 2015 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement, wealth management and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce its recent CEFEX (Centre for Fiduciary Excellence) Certification. BPG joins an elite group of Investment Advisors to successfully complete the independent certification process. The CEFEX standard describes how an Investment Advisor assumes the responsibility for managing a client’s overall investment management process, which includes the selection, monitoring and deselection of investment managers, as well as developing processes to implement investment strategies and fiduciary practices on an ongoing basis. “Through CEFEX’s independent assessment, the certification provides [ read more ]

CEFEX - Centre for Fiduciary Excellence

Rick Harris

BPG Adds Oregon Affiliate to Network of Retirement Plan Consultants

Chicago, IL – April 14, 2015 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce the addition of Rick Harris to its growing network of retirement consultants. Mr. Harris will lead the Salem, Oregon office of Blue Prairie Group as part of BPG’s advisor affiliate program. As practice leader for the higher education and non-profit spaces, he will play a vital part in developing new business in these markets. “I am excited to be associated with Blue Prairie Group,” said Rick Harris. “They are truly a top-tier retirement and investment consulting firm [ read more ]


BPG Partners with PSCA to Offer an Online ERISA Fiduciary Training Program

Chicago, IL – March 17, 2015 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce a new partnership with the Plan Sponsor Council of America (“PSCA”) to provide an online ERISA fiduciary training program for their clients. PSCA developed a new online fiduciary training program that provides a certificate of completion for fiduciaries that complete a series of modules and pass corresponding tests. “While we have provided fiduciary education and training for more than a decade, we felt the PSCA program does a nice job of providing essential fiduciary training for plan [ read more ]

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Connie Mulligan

BPG Names Constantine Mulligan as Equity Partner and Director of Research

Chicago, IL – March 5, 2015 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement, wealth management and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce the addition of new equity partner and Director of Research, Constantine “Connie” Mulligan. Connie’s career in the institutional and wealth management investment space began over 10 years ago, during which time he has worked extensively with both institutional and wealth management clients. Prior to joining Blue Prairie Group three years ago, Connie worked at RH Financial Group, where he managed client portfolios and conducted investment and asset allocation research. While at Blue Prairie Group, he [ read more ]


BPG Adds Industry Veterans to Network of Retirement Consultants

Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce the addition of two industry veterans, Jere Cowden and Mark Muto, to its growing network of retirement consultants. Mr. Cowden and Mr. Muto will lead the Pittsburgh office of Blue Prairie Group as part of Blue Prairie Group’s advisor affiliate program. “The partnership with Blue Prairie Group allows us to leverage the scale and efficiencies of a larger, nationally recognized firm, while delivering personalized local consulting services to our clients,” said Jere Cowden. “We are also very confident this partnership will help to propel [ read more ]

Business Teamwork Puzzle Pieces

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BPG Uses Retiremap to Win Industry Award for Financial Wellness

San Francisco, CA – September 24, 2014 – Leading ERISA retirement consulting firm Blue Prairie Group partnered with Retiremap to win a PSCA Signature Award with “High Distinction” for the Financial Wellness program it developed on behalf of a plan sponsor client. The Signature Award was presented at the Plan Sponsor Council of America’s 67th Annual National Conference held in Miami, Florida. A short video overview of the Retiremap program is available here: RetiremapHQ.com/tour Using Retiremap’s Plan For Your Future iPad workshops and working closely with the client, Blue Prairie Group education specialists achieved the following results for its client: [ read more ]


In The News 2014

Time for a Menu Makeover BlackRock.com – August 2014 Plan Sponsor National Conference 2014: DB Plan De-Risking Planadviser.com – June 2014 Wellness Programs Benefit the Plan as Well as Participant Planadviser.com – April 2014 Blue Prairie Group Adds Office Leader Planadviser.com – April 2014


Blue Prarie Group: Carmela Elco photographed in Chicago, IL. June 17, 2014. Photo by Andrew Collings.

BPG Adds A Top 100 Retirement Advisor To Network Of Retirement Plan Consultants

Chicago, IL – April 9, 2014 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce the addition of defined contribution industry veteran, Carmela Elco, to its growing network of affiliated retirement consultants. Ms. Elco will lead the Philadelphia office of Blue Prairie Group and will maintain an independent business model. “I am excited by the opportunity to join a successful ERISA-focused advisory firm like Blue Prairie Group,” said Carmela. “The affiliation with Blue Prairie Group provides my clients with access to a powerful suite of proven tools and resources, while giving me [ read more ]


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BPG Implements Retiremap Using iPads in Onsite Workshops

SAN FRANCISCO, October 1, 2013 — Leading ERISA retirement consulting firm Blue Prairie Group is now using iPads to educate employees and measurably improve retirement readiness with the Retiremap program from Boulevard R.  The new Retiremap Plan For Your Future iPad workshops offer an independent, employer-centric solution to engage employees, while helping plan advisors reach more employees in less time. A short video overview is available here: RetiremapHQ.com/tour “We successfully implemented the Retiremap employee education software with several of our clients and each implementation has worked as intended. The meetings have been well attended and employees love to receive a [ read more ]


Paul Sommerstad Joins Blue Prairie Group as an ERISA Consultant

Chicago, IL – August 1, 2013 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce the addition of a new ERISA Consultant, Paul Sommerstad. Paul has worked in the retirement consulting space for nearly 10 years. Prior to joining Blue Prairie Group, Paul worked at a Minneapolis-based investment advisory firm as an Account Executive where he managed and consulted over 40 separate 401(k), 403(b) and pension plans. Paul also assisted in investment research and was a non-voting member of the investment committee. Ty Parrish, Blue Prairie Group’s Managing Partner, said, “We are [ read more ]

Paul Sommerstad Blue Prairie Group Profile Picture

Blue Prarie Group: Carla Taylor photographed in Chicago, IL. June 17, 2014. Photo by Andrew Collings.

BPG Names Carla Taylor as Wealth Management Consultant

Chicago, IL – May 15, 2013 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce the addition of a new wealth management consultant, Carla Taylor, CFP®. Ms. Taylor serves as a financial advisor and wealth manager to a select group of individual clients. Ms. Taylor brings relevant experience after working with high net-worth families for three years at the advisory firm Brownson, Rehmus & Foxworth (BRF) and most recently worked at Gresham Partners where she developed long-term relationships with clients as a trusted advisor. Gary Silverman, a managing partner at Blue Prairie [ read more ]


Blue Prairie Group Launches New Plan Health Report and SmartCard™

Chicago, IL – March 20, 2013 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, has launched a comprehensive plan diagnostic report, the BPG Plan Health Report™. The proprietary report brings together a forward looking 24-month strategic planning calendar, information about plan-level participation, average and asset-weighted portfolio costs as well as plan design benchmarking and fee data. At the heart of the report lies the BPG Plan Health SmartCardTM, a powerful yet easy-to-use benchmarking tool focused on measuring the critical dimensions of a successful plan. It’s designed to quantify the overall effectiveness of a participant directed, [ read more ]

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Blue Prarie Group: Ty Parrish photographed in Chicago, IL. June 17, 2014. Photo by Andrew Collings.

Blue Prairie Group Names Ty Parrish as Equity Partner

Chicago, IL – February 14, 2013 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce the addition of new equity partner and Senior ERISA Consultant, Ty Parrish. Ty has worked in the institutional retirement and investment space for nearly 20 years with both plan sponsors and the broader advisor community. Prior to joining Blue Prairie Group, Ty worked at Great-West Life, Sun Trust Institutional Retirement Services and RidgeWorth Investments in marketing, sales, and product development and brings deep experience to Blue Prairie Group in two key areas: ERISA retirement consulting and the [ read more ]


Blue Prairie Group Releases Updated Stable Value Database Executive Summary

Chicago, IL – January 27, 2013 – Blue Prairie Group (“BPG”), a Chicago-based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, released its most recent findings from its stable value database. Every quarter, Blue Prairie Group updates its stable value database based on questionnaire results from 17 leading stable value providers representing over $140 billion of stable value assets. BPG summarizes the findings and releases them in an executive summary format that is then made available on Blue Prairie Group’s website. The information is free and is available about 6 – 8 weeks after the end of each quarter. Please click on [ read more ]

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In The News 2012

Stable Value Industry: Either Boom or BustPensions & Investments – October, 2012 These Funds Give Retirement Savers Stability Market Watch – October, 2012


Blue Prairie Group Names Deborah Lovett as Wealth Management Consultant

August 3, 2012 – Chicago, IL – Blue Prairie Group is pleased to announce the addition of a new wealth management consultant, Deborah Lovett. Debbie will serve as a portfolio manager and financial advisor to a select group of individual clients. She brings relevant experience after working with high net-worth families for almost two decades at the advisory firm Brownson, Rehmus & Foxworth in Chicago, where she developed long-term relationships with clients as a trusted advisor. Matt Gnabasik, Blue Prairie Group’s Managing Director, said, “We are very excited to bring Debbie on board. She brings a fresh outlook to our [ read more ]

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Blue Prairie Group Named in Top 100 RIA Firms

August 1, 2012 Chicago, IL – Registered Rep Magazine has named Blue Prairie Group as one of the top 100 independent Wealth Manager RIA firms in the country. BPG was ranked number 8 nationally, and second highest in total assets under management for Chicago-based firms. Registered Rep ranked RIA firms not only on total assets under management, but also on their breadth of service offerings in areas such as financial planning, trust and estate counseling and educational expense planning. Registered Rep Magazine Top 100 RIA Firms


Blue Prairie Group Launches Stable Value Database

December 29, 2011 – Blue Prairie Group (BPG), a leading fee-based retirement and investment consulting firm based in Chicago, just released its Q3 2011 stable value database findings. The executive summary will be refreshed each quarter and is available at no cost on Blue Prairie Group’s website. Q3 2011 BPG Stable Value Database Key Findings 1-year investment performance ranged from 1.3 to 4.5 percent.  Market-to-book ratios generally increased due to falling interest rates, which was a stronger contributor to the ratio than a weaker corporate sector, which depressed bond prices.  Durations ranged from 1.6 to 4.4 years, and have shortened [ read more ]

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Blue Prairie Group Enhances Fiduciary-based Investment Consulting™ Report

October 31, 2011 – Blue Prairie Group, a leading fee-based retirement and investment consulting firm, has made significant enhancements to its Fiduciary-based Investment Consulting™ report designed for its ERISA retirement plan sponsor clients. The changes were the result of client suggestions over the past year since the Fiduciary-based Investment Consulting™ report was first rolled out in early 2010 and is part of Blue Prairie Group’s continuous effort to improve its investment monitoring report by proving key, actionable information for its busy fiduciary clients.  The new report design includes features such as a high-level business plan to track for busy clients [ read more ]


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Blue Prairie Group on Inc. Magazine 500/5000 List 2nd Time in 3 Years

October 1, 2011- Inc. Magazine recently named Blue Prairie Group as one of the fastest-growing privately held firms in the country. This is the second time Blue Prairie Group has received the award in the last three years. The Inc. 500|5000 list represents the most comprehensive look at the most important segment of the economy—America’s independent entrepreneurs.  Matt Gnabasik, Blue Prairie Group’s Managing Director commented, “We are honored to be recognized by Inc. Magazine again for this significant accomplishment. This designation puts us in elite company along with some of America’s most accomplished businesses. BPG is 100% organically grown — [ read more ]


Blue Prairie Group Named in Top 50 Independent Wealth Manager RIA Firms

August 1, 2011 Chicago, IL – Registered Rep Magazine has named Blue Prairie Group as one of the top 50 independent Wealth Manager RIA firms in the country. BPG ranked number 27 out of 50 nationally, and third highest in total assets under management for Chicago-based firms. Registered Rep ranked RIA firms not only on total assets under management, but also on their breadth of service offerings in areas such as financial planning, trust and estate counseling and educational expense planning.  Gary Silverman, Blue Prairie Group’s Wealth Management Practice Leader and partner in the firm commented, “We’re pleased to be [ read more ]

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2010 In The News Articles

Blue Prairie Group Expands StaffPensions & Investments – November, 2010 Providers Add Alternative Investments to Target Date FundsREITs, Commodities, TIPS are Among the New OptionsInvestment News – October, 2010 10 Things 401(k) Providers Won’t Tell YouSmartMoney Magazine – June, 2010 SSgA Exits Stable Value; $8 Billion May be Up for GrabsPension & Investments – June, 2010 Some 401(k) Plans are Ahead of the Curve on Transparency of FeesInvestment News – April, 2010


Blue Prairie Group Engages Highly Experienced ERISA Attorney

October 14, 2010 – Chicago, IL – Blue Prairie Group, a Chicago‐based institutional retirement and investment consulting firm, is pleased to announce they have engaged the services of Michael J. Olah, J. D. Mr. Olah has over 20 years of experience in the ERISA/Benefits area, beginning his career practicing ERISA law in Ohio and Virginia. In the past 17 years, Mr. Olah has been employed by Schwab Corporate and Retirement Services, Strong Capital Management and KeyCorp, during which time he consulted on ERISA and client servicing issues, mentoring client servicing teams and managing business risk. Mr. Olah stated, “I couldn’t [ read more ]

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Blue Prairie Group Launches Redesigned Fiduciary-based Investment Consulting (TM) Report

Blue Prairie Group Launches Redesigned Fiduciary-based Investment ConsultingTM Report Feb 05, 2010 – Blue Prairie Group, a leading fee-based retirement and investment consulting firm headquartered in Chicago, is launching its redesigned Fiduciary-based Investment ConsultingTM report. This report is the culmination of over a year of internal work including significant feedback from clients. The redesigned report is intended to define a new standard for ERISA investment consulting. Sara Braz, the Blue Prairie Group consultant who served as the internal project manager said, “We see this report as much more than just an aesthetic redesign. For us, it represents a complete retooling [ read more ]


2009 In The News Articles

Consultants 2009 – Ranked by total worldwide advisory assets Pensions & Investments 2009 Consultant Rankings – November, 2009 BPG and MCHC Partnership Offers Members Human Resource Consulting Services MCHC – October, 2009 Blue Prairie Group Has Been Named To Inc. Magazine’s 5000 List Inc. Magazine – August, 2009 When Acquiring a Company, It’s the People that Make the Difference! MRA’s Alert! Magazine – July, 2009 Retirement 101: Helping Employees Help Themselves Talent Management Magazine – May, 2009

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Blue Prairie Group Named on Inc. 500/5000 List

August 17, 2009, Chicago, IL – Blue Prairie Group was just named one of the fastest- growing privately held firms in the country by Inc. Magazine. We ranked number 1,037 out of 5,000 nationally, and number 42 in the Chicago-Naperville-Joliet metro region. The Inc. 500|5000 companies are ranked according to percentage revenue growth from 2005 through 2008 during which time BPG experienced almost 300% growth. BPG’s growth rate outperformed the 102.4% median growth rate for companies included in Inc. Magazine’s ranking this year and the 24.01% industry benchmark for Business Products & Services. Matt Gnabasik, Blue Prairie Group’s Founder and [ read more ]


2008 In The News Articles

Consultants 2008-Ranked by total worldwide advisory assets Consultants 2008-Ranked by U.S. institutional, tax-exempt advisory assets Consultants 2008-Ranked by total number of searches Blue Prairie Group’s profile Pensions & Investments 2008 Consultant Rankings – November 2008 “Could unbundling save you a bundle?” DC Focus Magazine from Barclays Global Investors – September, 2008 “Focus on Excellence – A Successful Plan Conversion” PSCA Defined Contribution Insights Magazine – September/October, 2008 “Rising inflation outstrips annual increase in Midwest wages” Medill Reports, Chicago – April, 2008 “Execs Profit by Querying 401(k) Costs, Plans Can Save Millions” Workforce Management – April, 2008 “Execs asking hard questions [ read more ]

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2006 In The News Articles

“10 Things Your 401(k) Provider Won’t Tell You” Smart money – November, 2006 “401(k) Lawsuits May Pose Legal Risk for Advisers” Investment News – November, 2006 “Drawing a Bead on Cost“ CFO Magazine – May, 2006 “Mail Bag – Letters to the Editor” BARRON’S – May, 2006 “Congress is Split on 401(k) Advisers” The Wall Street Journal – January, 2006

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