Need some help preparing for a sound financial future? Just speak with John J. Ceparano '85CBA, CPA, PFS, M.Tax, CFP, one of the St. John's community's very own economic experts.
An accomplished alumnus, Ceparano is currently the Private Wealth Manager and Director of Tax and Financial Planning at Joseph Capital Management, LLC. He participated in the recent Meet the Experts event on the Staten Island campus, a program in which financial professionals shared their advice on estate planning and how to adequately weather the tough economic climate.
It was the first time Ceparano had participated as a panelist and he viewed the experience as a welcome return to the University he loves.
"I had been touching base with people on campus about getting more involved and about recruiting some students for my business," Ceparano explained, "so that's how I started to get back in touch with St. John's. Eventually that led to my helping out at a recruiting event the University held on Long Island and, after that, I was asked to join the panel of experts due to my credentials. I can't tell you how glad I am to have participated and to have helped fellow alumni out."
From explaining complicated tax rules to suggesting ways to save for the future, Ceparano provided invaluable information to all of the guests. He stressed the importance of establishing a coordinated economic strategy.
"Many clients come to me with what I call a ‘hodge-podge plan,' or a lack of a plan altogether," he noted. "Oftentimes their assets are in too many places at once and they listen to too many different people. They'll have a CPA and an investment professional who don't talk to each other, and that winds up costing the client more money in taxes and fees. My biggest recommendation, therefore, is to get consistent and long-term planning, and that's precisely what my company does – we create a personalized plan that's fully comprehensive while, at the same time, designed and customized to meet a client's personal needs."
Ceparano is glad to help out the St. John's community, particularly because it harkens back to his days as an undergraduate. As a student, he was active in a variety of on-campus organizations and even served as a cheerleader during the Johnnies' storied 1985 Final Four run.
"I got to meet a lot of people by being a cheerleader and had a ton of fun in the process," he said. "From one perspective, you could say that I was gaining experience in what business is all about – traveling, making contacts and networking. But also in terms of sheer fun, it was an unparalleled opportunity – I got to know great people like Lou Carnesecca '50C, '60GEd, '00HON, Chris Mullin '98CBA and Bill Wennington '85SVC. Wennington ended up being a great friend of mine who came to my wedding."
Helping out at the Meet the Experts event was just the tip of the iceberg for Ceparano – he hopes to continue to participate at alumni events and share his expertise with the rest of the St. John's family.
"I enjoy the fact that I've been embraced by the University, that I've helped them and am viewed as an ‘expert.' It's a great opportunity for me to gain exposure, but it's especially nice just to remain connected with St. John's. I still have a personal feeling of loyalty to the University, and I'm glad that hasn't diminished."Learn How You Can Help
If you are interested in supporting St. John's through a gift in your estate plans, contact Susan Damiani at (718) 990-7562 or [email protected] today, at no obligation.