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Lamont Brown
From Marine Corps to Money Management: ALNA Financial Succeeds with SCORE

ALNA Financial, Lamont Brown

Formed in: 2020
What do you do?

ALNA Financial is a veteran-owned Wealth Management company that specializes in coordinating all the parts of our client's financial lives.  We have a process that starts with helping our clients understand the keys to their personal financial independence.  We then align our expertise in risk management, estate planning, investments, and tax planning to help them achieve their personal outcomes.  

What inspired you to start your business?

After leaving the Marine Corps and becoming a Systems Engineer, I realized I wanted the freedom to make a difference in the lives of people.  I was inspired by my purpose and belief that financial independence can enhance relationships and make life a little easier.  Starting my business allows me to make a positive impact on those we encounter.

What's special about your business?

Our experience and process of helping our clients make better decisions for themselves is collaborative and it's meant to help them get clear about what's important to them now and in the future and take action to achieve Financial Independence.

What have been the high and low points of being a business owner?

My low point came early and later in the process.  Starting out I understood financial planning but I had no clue about running a business setting a vision and staying motivated.  I felt overwhelmed by all the things I needed to learn and do while trying to take care of clients.   I felt like I had so much to do in the business and not enough time.  Over time I gained focus and the overwhelm left.  The highs have been seeing clients succeed and being able to have the freedom to make a meaningful difference in their lives.  

What influenced you to seek help from SCORE?

Mentorship from someone who's been successful.

How SCORE helped.

My SCORE mentor, Michael Paul has been great to work with as he's pushed and guided me to better understand my business and business finances.  Michael has always asked challenging questions that have helped me to be better and see where I need work.  Before working with Michael, I hadn't completed a business plan or built a financial forecast for my business.  Now I'm so grateful that I did this as these items are tools I use daily to make better decisions.

What's great about my mentor?

Michael has been great because he asks great questions and provides direct feedback.  Most importantly, I can trust the advice Michael provides.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting a small business?

Take the leap, build a network of resources, and seek guidance from others who've been successful.

What would you tell a fellow business owner about SCORE?

I'm really happy to have SCORE as a resource. The knowledge and experience my SCORE mentor has brought to our conversation has accelerated my growth and made me a better business owner.  Prior to meeting Michael I was doing the job but not building a business. 

What have you learned from your experiences as a business owner?

I'm built for this and all the experiences before this point have prepared me for being a business owner.  From being a Marine, to Systems Engineer, to Toastmasters, and running passion all have prepared me for the challenge.  Being an owner is challenging and it's lonely but it's not impossible. 

My mentors
Headshot of Michael Paul
Michael Paul

With experience in Sales, Sales and Marketing Management, Entrepreneurship, and General Management...

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300 Preston Avenue
Charlottesville, VA 22902
(434) 295-6712

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Funded, in part, through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.

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