LPL gives a voice to the voiceless. As a woman in this industry, and as a Black woman, we oftentimes are not seen, nor are we heard. However, ever since affiliating with LPL, I have been given a voice and also a face. And I’m very happy about that and very proud of it.

- Denika Tokunaga, Maven Wealth Management

Learn how LPL Financial advisor Denika Tokunaga leverages LPL’s partnership to change people’s lives

For Denika Tokunaga, financial advisor with Maven Wealth Management, success means being able to open the door for other people. Growing up in Baltimore City, Tokunaga wasn’t exposed to many discussions of finances. “Where I came from, there wasn’t anyone who looked like me, who knew very much about finances. Not to mention investments. Sitting around the dinner table in the evening, we never talked about stocks and bonds.” But a lack of exposure to those subjects only inspired her to want to learn more.

“I knew that I needed to change my life. I wanted to be able to give my children more than what I had,” she said. And she took that mindset and also applied it to what she could do for other people’s lives, beyond even her immediate family.

The value of a strong support system — and freedom of choice

Tokunaga left a wirehouse environment to join LPL in 2014, and she instantly felt the difference in how she was able to work with her clients and “put their interests first,” she said. “One of the amazing attributes that I’ve benefited from, after joining LPL, was just being able to have a strong support system. A support system that’s objective and cares about me. Who feels like when I win, they win.”

And this support has enabled her to thrive in her practice and deliver for her clients. “As a sole practitioner, having the breadth and strength of all of LPL’s resources means everything to me. It’s a feeling that’s unparalleled,” said Tokunaga. “When I came to LPL, I had no idea what to expect, but I knew that I needed a new way to do business. I needed to be able to build the business the way I wanted to, without having the organization tell me what types of products I needed to use for my clients,” she said. Reflecting on the seven years she’s spent with LPL so far, she says, “It has been a phenomenal experience.”

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Putting LPL tech to work

“As a financial advisor, technology is everything,” said Tokunaga. And not just any technology, “but the latest and greatest.” From Meeting Manager to eSignature, the Portfolio Review Tool to ClientWorks CRM, Tokunaga is leveraging what LPL has to offer and making it work for her.

ClientWorks is amazing. It’s a conglomerate of all these different resources and it allows us to have access to many more resources outside of LPL,” she said. And as much as she uses these technology tools in her practice, she also encourages her clients to take advantage of their online access to their accounts. “I love for clients to have Account View. It’s very beneficial because the client is able to log in to their account, on a computer or on the app, and they can see exactly where they are, what their account values are, and it’s in real time.”

Looking ahead

Tokunaga has built her business and begun to establish a legacy that is grounded by relationships. And feeling connected to the people at LPL, building relationships with them, has been just as valuable to her as the tools and resources she uses in her practice. “I feel completely embraced by everyone within the firm,” she said. “And the Diversity and Inclusion team is so valuable to me as a Black financial advisor. Just knowing that there’s that kind of outreach, that the firm cares about me and how I’m doing in my practice, how I’m doing personally. And also knowing how much they care about my clients.”

She added, “LPL gives a voice to the voiceless. As a woman in this industry, and as a Black woman, we oftentimes are not seen, nor are we heard. However, ever since affiliating with LPL, I have been given a voice and also a face. And I’m very happy about that and very proud of it.”

Tokunaga’s commitment to her clients and her desire to help people—especially those who may need more guidance to realize the opportunities they could have—will undoubtedly be the cornerstone of her legacy. And that’s exactly what she strives for now.

“The legacy that I am creating is one in which I would like to be able to help other people,” she said. “I want to be able to help clients. I want to be able to help people who want to join the industry. I want to be able to help people who look like me. I want to be able to make a difference, make a change, and close the wealth gap that we’re experiencing—not only in this country, but all over the world.”

The views and opinions expressed by the LPL financial professional(s) are as of the date of the recording. These views may not be representative of the views of other financial professionals and are not indicative of future performance or success. Neither LPL Financial nor the LPL financial professional can be held responsible for any direct or incidental loss incurred by applying any of the information offered.

Maven Wealth Management and LPL Financial are separate entities.

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