Our mission is to value and protect, above all things, the trust that our clients have placed in us. We do this by acting with integrity, always being accountable for our actions, and consistently applying and expanding our expertise.

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About Us

Our mission at Northstar is to value and protect, above all things, the trust that our clients have placed in us. We do this by acting with integrity, always being accountable for our actions, and consistently applying and expanding our expertise. Our team of professionals has been dedicated to this mission since our founding in 1996. Everything we do, from financial planning to investment management, is driven by our client’s needs. Helping them to define their most important goals is our main focus.

Our clients often have complex financial lives that require an experienced hand for guidance and execution. They place trust in our entire team because we work as one unit, with the capability to service and support the financial concerns of a variety of clients.

Professionals, executives, and business owners use our services to organize and monitor their financial lives. Our experience with pensions and governmental plans helps us provide planning services to both active and retired military members. And our level of expertise allows us to guide the financial decision making for trusts, qualified plans, and nonprofits.

Steven B. Girard
Principal / President

Steven is the President and principal of Northstar Financial Companies, Inc. His long-term approach to financial planning and investing has helped numerous clients achieve their goal of a life lived well. As the leader of our firm, Steven is responsible for developing the planning strategies used by our clients as well as our firm’s overall philosophy and guiding initiatives.

Before founding Northstar in 1996, Steven earned a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of New Hampshire and began his financial services career at MetLife. Wishing to provide his clients with independent thinking and personalized strategies, Steven decided to create his own firm focused on delivering tailored financial services in an ethical manner.

He is currently studying and fulfilling requirements for the rigorous Certified Financial Planner™ certification.

Julia Randall
Financial Planner

Julia is a financial planner and a registered Investment Advisor Representative with Northstar, providing clients with day-to-day support and enabling them to maintain or modify their plans as situations dictate. A detail-oriented individual, she guides clients through a high level of active communication. Julia believes that consistent monitoring and making timely adjustments is an important part of a successful plan.

Julia earned a bachelor’s degree in Communication and English from Temple University. A 20+ year veteran of the financial industry, she brings both management experience and hands-on investment knowledge to the Northstar team. She often coordinates with attorneys on complex estate plans and gifting strategies for high level executives. Her goal is to help bring clients confidence in their planning and a greater understanding of the financial system.

Julia lives in Pennsylvania and enjoys cycling, hiking, camping, kayaking and generally spending time outdoors with her husband Jeff, her two grown boys and her friends.

Alex Bastron
Financial Planner

Alex is a financial planner and asset manager with Northstar. He believes that everyone’s situation is unique and requires a customized solution in order to achieve financial independence and other important life goals. Alex strongly feels that effective and ongoing communication is paramount in any relationship. Beyond that basic relationship need, confidence and comfort in an investment plan and investment portfolio can only happen through proper communication.

Alex earned his bachelor’s degree in Finance from the University of Northern Iowa and has been working in the industry for more than 15 years. He and his wife, Tasha, enjoy all the activities that the Colorado mountains offer and love their dogs, Chloe and Titus, more than they should. They also enjoy spending time with family and attending concerts and sporting events.

Alex is currently completing requirements to attain the professional designation of Certified Financial Planner.

Thomas Tuskey

Thomas is registered with Northstar as an Investment Advisor Representative (IAR) and currently serves as Paraplanner to both advisors in the Pennsylvania office. He is a member of both our Investment Committee and our Compliance Committee, and is looking to grow into a purely Advisory role as he gains more industry experience, while also studying to become a CFP Professional.

After graduating from The Rutgers Business School in New Brunswick, Thomas began his professional career with Northstar in 2018 as a Client Service Specialist. He prides himself on relentless attention to personalized client service. Thomas loves cultivating new relationships so please feel free to say hello!

Currently residing in Pennsylvania, when he is not working you can usually find Thomas back in New Jersey spending time with his family and friends, cooking something delicious, or studying the financial markets.

Melissa Gemmell
Operations Manager

Melissa is the Operations Manager at Northstar and is a member of the Compliance Committee.   She is responsible for managing all the day-to-day needs for the office and staff including record keeping, software systems, custodian relationships, vendor management and staff training.  Additionally, Melissa works closely with advisors on life insurance cases and is the primary contact for a number of our industry relationships including brokers and general agents.

Melissa graduated from Rivier College in New Hampshire with a bachelor’s degree in Human Development in 2010.  She began her career with Northstar shortly after and has been a part of the team for 11 years.  Melissa is currently working toward her Series 65 so that she is also able to work in an Advisory capacity at some point.

Melissa resides in Pennsylvania with her husband, Rob.  She enjoys yoga, going to the beach, walks, and spending time with her husband, friends and family.

Lauren Cuddeback
Director of Business Development and Client Relations

Lauren is the Director of Business Development and Client Relations for Northstar Financial Co. She generates new growth opportunities by developing and cultivating partnerships with new and prospective clients.  Lauren’s understanding of Northstar’s financial planning philosophy, strategy, and solutions allows her to strategically find new, long-term opportunities.  She works side by side with her team to facilitate the financial planning process from start to finish.

Lauren earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Education and English from University Delaware where she also played on the Varsity Lacrosse team.  Originally from Wayne, PA, Lauren lived in New York City for five years where she pursued her career in Insurance sales.  She returned to Philadelphia and now resides in Conshohocken with her English bulldog, Barb.

Lauren takes pride in her passion for meeting new people, building strong connections and being involved in her community  A true self-starter, Lauren likes to bartend, teach indoor cycling classes and participate in local Conshohocken community events.

Our Approach & Process

Our experiences working with clients over the years has taught us that clearly defined goals are the most powerful drivers of success, and that long-term strategies to meet those goals must be what guides day-to-day decision making. At Northstar, we take the time to help you fully articulate your goals and only act once the strategies we choose are mutually understood. We have also learned that over-extending risk can damage even a well-crafted plan, and that risk takes many forms. Inflation, for instance, is one of the most over-looked obstacles to long-term Plans, and so we measure its impact in everything we do. We also consider the tax implications of each strategy we employ, and how best to minimize that expense.

Of course investment risk is measured and monitored, and we take great care to keep our client’s from assuming too much in their portfolios. The biggest risks, however, are those that are most often unexpected – the devastating shock of a long-term disability, or death. We assess the potential economic impact of such an event for our clients, and ensure that the right strategies are in place to protect them. At Northstar, we believe that active and regular communication is a critical element of effectively working towards goals and managing risks, so we take the time to listen to our clients and apprise them of their progress on a regular basis.