Who We Are
Communicating with and helping others have always been major points of emphasis for Craig Barnwell. With a Bachelor’s of Science and Education from Emporia University in 1984, Craig honed these skills by teaching for five years and coaching for 15 years before starting in the insurance business in 1991. He earned his LUTCF designation and began his own practice as an independent financial advisor in 2004.
At CB Financial, Craig works primarily with pre- and post-retirement clients, growing their portfolios, but especially, protecting their assets. He knows from experience that economic uncertainty is a certainty. “It’s funny,” says Craig, “but people generally ask me the same three questions, more or less: 1. Have I saved enough money to retire? 2. Will my savings last my whole lifetime? 3. By the way, how much is enough? I’m able to give them solid numbers as answers, but then help them achieve their goals — that’s the part of my job that is really satisfying to me.”
CB Financial will never engage in the high-pressure sales that some firms employ. Craig’s philosophy is to never take the trust of his clients lightly and to serve as the alternative to higher-risk-taking money managers, to be the “safe-money guy.” This is why a lot of his business comes from repeat and referral clients. He has now even begun to work with the offspring of his former clients, who recommend him to their children. He makes house calls upon request and is available to his clients at all times, not just when they are doing business.
“My philosophy is that it’s what you do for people after the transaction that shows what kind of advisor you are,” says Craig. “I haven’t worked for Prudential since 2004, but I just helped a woman I worked with back in those days who recently showed up at my office. She tried to pay me and I said, ‘No ma’am, my mother and grandmother would be highly upset with me.’ So yes, I make myself available to my clients, sometimes even after they’re no longer my clients!”
The area of focus at CB Financial will always be income planning. Craig believes in treating clients as the unique and individual people that they are. This is why he designs retirement plans specific to each client. Each case presents unique challenges, and he enjoys strategizing with clients to overcome them
In his free time, Craig is an avid golfer and reader. A former college basketball player, he jokes that in his mature years he’s joined the “dark side” as a college basketball referee. He and his wife have two grown sons and daughters, and seven grandchildren. They both love ocean beaches and enjoy visiting the Caribbean at least once a year. They are also very active in their church. And, as a former teacher, Craig has never lost his passion for helping children — he and his wife recently hosted the Third Annual Fun Day for Foster Kids at their church.