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Melissa Hawryschuk

Chief Executive Officer, Brighton Securities

Years in current role: 10 months

What has been your organization’s biggest success over the past year?

My team is my biggest asset. It is what differentiates us, defines us and elevates us. We have been very successful in creating a culture that retains our talent and it is one of the things that drew me to Brighton Securities. Since I started 10 months ago, we have hired amazing teammates and have grown our workforce over 15%. As we grow, it is important that we grow with the right people to execute our vision and represent our brand well into the future. Our firm always executes on a people first strategy; this will remain our priority as we move forward.

I am also proud of our Training and Development Program. We will continue to leverage success with this program to create an inclusive culture with intentional focus on diversity for our new advisors to thrive.

What are your expectations for the next 6-12 months?

Growth. We want to continue our strong growth by expanding our portfolio and continue to provide exceptional value to all our clients. We are always challenging ourselves to improve the support, tools, and technology that we provide our teammates and clients. We know that strong employee engagement directly impacts the experience that our clients have with us.

We will also have discipline as we grow. Creating sustainability in everything we do takes patience and discipline. For Brighton Securities to continue providing top tier service for our clients, we are very selective in who we grow with and that takes patience. Our clients count on us to help them meet their financial needs through all life events; I have tremendous pride in the experience my team provides.

What advice would you give somebody just starting out in your industry?

First, the financial services industry is a people-focused industry. I have incredible mentors who support my growth. Building relationships is critical and having a network of mentors to challenge you, empower you and help you grow will elevate your success in this industry.

Secondly, always be a student. This industry requires continuous learning, being open to development and personal growth is critical. Clients are trusting us with the financial wealth of their families; staying a humble learner will enable you to provide the best possible advice.

What is one personal goal you have for the next year?

I want to be an advocate for promoting the success of women in the financial services industry. As a woman in a traditionally male-dominated industry, I know that real change will take a multitude of efforts including education, mentorship and companywide commitments.

As we continue to pursue more female leadership in the financial services sector, I am reminded of this quote from Sheryl Sandberg: “We need women at all levels, including the top, to change the dynamic, reshape the conversation, to make sure women’s voices are heard and heeded, not overlooked and ignored.”

What are your favorite things about Rochester?

My family is in Rochester and that is my most favorite part of our city. We live in such a beautiful community, when my family has free time together, we love the Finger Lakes and we try to enjoy as much time as we can on the lakes.

I also love garbage plates, the best in Rochester is called the “Turtle plate” and can be found at the Thirsty Turtle in Victor, NY.

This profile is part of Rochester Business Journal's Power 30 Banking & Finance list for 2022. Information used in this profile was sourced from the honoree. View the full list at rbj.net.

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