Ken Fisher, founder of Fisher Investments, has been called out by an RIA for allegedly making "horrible" comments at an exclusive industry conference this week.
Alex Chalekian, founder of Pasadena, Calif.-based Lake Avenue Financial, took to Twitter Wednesday saying Fisher made comments that were inappropriate and sexist in nature and even made a reference to drug use. Chalekian said the comments were made at this week's Tiburon CEO Summit.
“It was horrible. Things that were said by Ken Fisher were just absolutely horrifying. He made comments about genitalia, talked about picking up on a girl, and don't show them what's in your pants. He made reference to [convicted sex offender] Jeffrey Epstein, talked about charities are immoral, mentioned things about tripping on acid, and other inappropriate comments at the conference,” Chalekian said in his video, posted below.
“I know, we're not supposed to talk about these things, especially the way this summit is set up. It's meant to allow many of these icons and industry to be comfortable and talk amongst your peers. But I just had to open up and mention how disgusted I am,” Chalekian added.
Speaking to FA-IQ about the incident, a spokesperson for Fisher Investments shared tentative language for text that will appear in a statement to media later in the day.
He quoted Fisher as saying: "While I said the words, I don't think [Chalekian] heard me correctly. He clearly misconstrued my meaning or my intended meaning."
The spokesperson added that Fisher said: "To the extent that [Chalekian] and any others were offended, I apologize truly and sincerely."
The Tiburon CEO Summit bills itself as an annual meeting for its "executive-level clients" and is currently being held at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in San Francisco. The fireside chat with Fisher was scheduled for 11am PT on October 8 as a conversation facilitated by Chip Roame, managing partner of organizers, Tiburon Strategic Advisors.
Fisher, oft touted as a luminary of the financial advice world, is the outspoken founder of Camas, Wash.-based Fisher Investments — a $100 billion-plus business. Last year Fisher slammed the SEC for its attempts to write a best interest standard for broker-dealers, saying the regulator should enforce the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 and not “invent” a new standard for brokers.
According to the SEC, Chalekian has been an investment adviser representative for his firm, Lake Avenue Financial, since March 2014. His Brokercheck record indicates he has been with LPL Financial for sixteen years. A February 2019 SEC filing shows Lake Avenue’s AUM as $90 million.
Tiburon did not respond to queries for comments on the issue at the time of press.
Fisher's spokesperson released the following official statement later Wednesday: “While I said words he cited I don’t think he heard me correctly and clearly misconstrued my meaning and certainly my intended meaning. Most of his slant is “gotcha” wrong in my view. To the extent he and any others were offended I apologize truly and sincerely.”
This story is developing.
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