When some advisers look at investment returns, they see charts and graphs, hopefully with lines zooming upward. When his clients do well, Thomas Scalici sees something more.
He sees nonprofits with more funds to carry out their missions, hospitals empowered to buy more equipment, retirement plans fulfilling their promises, and corporations boasting stronger financial statements.
“In the course of doing this, we have built a profitable and sustainable business that benefits the people who work for us,” Scalici said. “This is something I think about every day.”
Scalici has been CEO of Cornerstone Institutional Investors since 2010, when the firm bought itself back from its former parent, Harleysville National Bank. He was a senior executive with the firm, which originally had been independent.
Scalici's leadership has been instrumental in the firm’s growth, and he is well-respected for his thoughtful management. But while today he heads a firm that manages billions of dollars in assets, his beginnings in the investment business were more modest. Scalici's first paycheck as a broker, after cold-calling potential customers, came to $9.27. The job taught him the value of perseverance.
“I had many setbacks in those early years, but I never gave up,” Scalici said. He brought the same spirit to the founding of Cornerstone, which followed a fee-based advisory model that was new to the market at the time.
“We believed it was a better way to run a business and was more aligned with the needs of our clients,” Scalici said. “It required us to reduce our current income in hopes that we would build a long-term business model that was sustainable. We were totally committed to this model, and remain so to this day.”
In addition to his position at Cornerstone, Scalici serves on the boards of Sacred Heart Hospital, the Catholic Diocese of Allentown and the Lehigh Country Club