Employee Profile: Barbara Black, CFP®

October 19, 2023

By ldraper on October 19, 2023

Our team is at the heart of everything we do at RMB. We believe in a people-first culture where our teams put our values at the forefront of our work. Barb Black, S.V.P. and senior wealth manager, is no exception. Our employee profile series continues as Barb shares her experience at RMB, her role leading our D.C. office, and some thoughts for investors.

INVESTED: Can you tell us a bit about your role at RMB and leading the Washington, D.C. office?

Barb: My time is split between working with clients and managing and growing the RMB D.C. team and client base. It’s a wonderful combination of everything I am passionate about—helping clients achieve their most cherished financial goals and leading and mentoring my colleagues.

INVESTED: What do you think differentiates the D.C. team from other RMB teams?

Barb: Each RMB team is unique in its own way. What makes the D.C. team different from other RMB offices is that we are small but mighty, and there is no lack of drive on our team. Our team is made up of two retired college athletes, a former Marine, and an ultramarathoner—so we all come from competitive backgrounds, which is highlighted in the work we do. We are all passionate about what we are working for, which is to see RMB and our clients succeed.

INVESTED: What was your background before coming to RMB and what led you here?

Barb: I grew up outside of Baltimore, Maryland, and attended Georgetown University, where I played Division I lacrosse and earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. Out of college, I worked briefly in marketing and public relations before working for a wealth management firm as a client service representative. One night I was at an event in Maryland with my colleagues, when my family friend introduced me to RMB co-founder and President Fred Paulman, who gave me his business card. I enjoyed my old firm and was fortunate to have had great mentors, but I was ready to start managing my own relationships and join a firm with a more comprehensive approach to working with clients. I was drawn to RMB because of the firm’s team service model and goals-based approach to planning for clients, so I accepted a job as a wealth management associate, moved to Washington D.C., and the rest is history!

INVESTED: What keeps you busy when you’re not in the office or focused on clients?

Barb: Travel! A lot of my close friends have recently tied the knot and so I’ve been to Tulum, England, Jackson Hole, and Lake Tahoe for weddings. Last October, I married my husband, Wyatt, and we plan on traveling around Italy this fall for our honeymoon! Back in D.C., I enjoy exploring downtown to find new bars and restaurants to try and I live a very active lifestyle. Maybe it’s the D1 athlete in myself, but I play tennis, golf, pickleball—anything to get my competitive juices flowing. Right now, I’m reading Killers of the Flower Moon by David Grann and look forward to seeing the movie with my mom later this year.

INVESTED: What excites you most about working with clients and helping them plan for their future?

Barb: The work we do for clients, in my opinion at least, is one of the most impactful professions out there. Giving people financial freedom is an incredible thing and is something every person wants and needs. Our best work can be done only by getting to know our clients on a personal level and building a mutual connection with full transparency and trust between one another.

The work we do for clients is one of the most impactful professions out there. Giving people financial freedom is an incredible thing.

INVESTED: How has your time at RMB shifted your perspective on a career in the financial industry? If you were to look back 10 years, what advice would you give your younger self?

Barb: Prior to RMB, when I was just starting my career, I was so focused on showing others what I know about wealth management and proving to them that I deserve to have a seat at the table. When I began at RMB, I started on this path of realizing what we can and can’t control in the market and in our clients’ lives. I began prioritizing helping clients do what they can to set themselves up for success, and I’ve enjoyed coaching clients through times of uncertainty.

Looking back 10 years, I would’ve told myself to slow down, listen more, and trust the process! Everyone’s path is different, and you’ll end up exactly where you need to be with open ears.

INVESTED: Are there any topics that you think often get overlooked by clients when thinking about their financial future?

Barb: I think the biggest risk that any investor faces is outliving your money. You’re going to outlive your money if you haven’t saved enough to fund your goals or if you aren’t making sure that your savings will keep up with the rising costs of those goals over time. A dollar today isn’t the same as a dollar tomorrow, so it’s important to know what sum is needed to meet your future goals—and that’s where your RMB advisor comes in.

INVESTED: Sandwiched between market optimism and the ongoing threat of recession, do you have any words of wisdom for investors as we enter 2024?

Barb: There are three ways that the market can go: it can go up, it can go down, or it can stay the same. We cannot predict where the market will go—particularly because many times in the past, what causes the market to drop is something we had not yet even considered. My words of wisdom for investors are to stay the course and remember that your investments are based on your goals. These investments shouldn’t change unless your goals do! If you have any concerns or hesitations about the market, then call your RMB advisor and we’ll navigate these fears together.

Read the Full 2023 Issue of INVESTED


The opinions and analyses expressed in this newsletter are based on RMB Capital Management, LLC’s (“RMB Capital”) research and professional experience are expressed as of the date of our mailing of this newsletter. Certain information expressed represents an assessment at a specific point in time and is not intended to be a forecast or guarantee of future results, nor is it intended to speak to any future time periods. RMB Capital makes no warranty or representation, express or implied, nor does RMB Capital accept any liability, with respect to the information and data set forth herein, and RMB Capital specifically disclaims any duty to update any of the information and data contained in this newsletter. The information and data in this newsletter does not constitute legal, tax, accounting, investment or other professional advice. Returns are presented net of fees. An investment cannot be made directly in an index. The index data assumes reinvestment of all income and does not bear fees, taxes, or transaction costs. The investment strategy and types of securities held by the comparison index may be substantially different from the investment strategy and types of securities held by your account. RMB Asset Management is a division of RMB Capital Management.

Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and federally registered CFP (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.

The CFA® and Chartered Financial Analyst® are registered trademarks owned by CFA Institute.

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