R.F.P. association set for inaugural conference

By Doug Watt | October 23, 2003 | Last updated on October 23, 2003
2 min read

(October 23, 2003) It’s been a fairly low-profile first year of existence for The Institute of Advanced Financial Planners (IAFP), the industry association for advisors holding the R.F.P. designation. After focusing on building the association and signing up members, the IAFP will show a more public face next week with its first ever conference in Toronto.

The IAFP came into being last year, splitting from the Canadian Association of Financial Planners (CAFP) as the CAFP joined forces with the Canadian Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors (CAIFA) to create Advocis.

Since then, the professional association has attracted more than 500 members, the bulk of the R.F.P. designation holders in Canada, according to IAFP president Lynne Triffon.

“There were about 600, I believe,” she says. “We do have some associate members as well but it’s mostly R.F.P.s.”

About 100 delegates are expected at the first IAFP conference, being held October 26 and 27 at the Toronto Congress Centre.

The conference, described as an advanced financial planning symposium, will follow a unique format. The entire program is based on a complex case study, which has already been distributed to delegates.

“One of the criticisms of CAFP conferences in the past was the level of education offered,” says Triffon. “We have a more focused membership so we’re able to tailor that accordingly.”

Attendees have also been asked to do a bit of homework, Triffon adds, and complete a workbook to earn additional CE credits.

Symposium speakers, who will all address the case study, include author Jim Otar, pension valuation specialist Edmund Burrows, divorce planner Akeela Davis and tax expert Glen Schmidt.

A newly developed practice standards document will also be unveiled at the conference.

Other pending projects for the IAFP include launching a new Web site — which will have both a public and members-only area — and preparing for the annual R.F.P. exam on October 25.

However, getting the word out to the public about the R.F.P. is the IAFP’s top priority, Triffon says, conceding that the designation is not as widely known as its more popular cousin, the CFP.

“But we have a relatively long history so there is some public awareness out there, not to the same extent obviously as the CFP,” she says. “We have some recognition, among other professionals, the media and some consumers. But that’s certainly our biggest challenge.”

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For more on the conference, check out the IAFP Web site at www.iafp.ca.

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Filed by Doug Watt, Advisor.ca, dwatt@advisor.ca


Doug Watt