DSG Principals

James R. Sholder

James Sholder brings to his clients over twenty-five years of financial services experience, with practical expertise in strategic and tactical planning, management of several business units, the development and implementation of value-enhancing market research programs, and the project management of new business initiatives.

Mr. Sholder has consulted with clients since 1988 in the development of strategy, creation of business and marketing plans, and the design and implementation of targeted market research. As an advisor to a wide mix of executives, his consulting engagements have included:

  • Corporate strategy development; also strategic and tactical plans for a broad array of business units, product lines, and retirement market initiatives;
  • Project management and facilitation;
  • Business opportunity diagnosis and business case development;
  • Evaluation of market potential for worksite marketing, retirement income market opportunities, personal financial planning, the home service business, and direct response marketing as an alternative distribution approach;
  • Financial/marketing models for insurance and bank programs;
  • Design and project management of proprietary and syndicated research.

Immediately prior to entering the consulting field, Mr. Sholder was Vice President, COO, and Principal of Colonial Penn Group's broker/dealer subsidiary, responsible for managing the day-to-day broker/dealer activities. In addition, he managed the unit that marketed mutual funds through Colonial Penn channels and established and managed the company's personal financial planning operation. Earlier at Colonial Penn, he was responsible for managing the variable annuity business and facilitating operational and strategic planning for each of the company's four major product lines.

Before Colonial Penn, Mr. Sholder was the Manager of Business Development at General Instrument Corporation, with responsibility for new venture business development and acquisition evaluations. He began his career with Atlantic Richfield, where he held a number of increasingly responsible positions in technical services, economic evaluation, econometric modeling, and business planning.

Mr. Sholder has been a NASD registered principal and registered representative, as well as a licensed life insurance agent. He has published articles in Barron's, National Underwriter, and several other financial services journals. He has co-authored articles on strategic competitive assessment and has written several white papers on the retirement market opportunity.

Mr. Sholder holds a bachelor's degree from Villanova University and received his MBA in finance from the University of Chicago.

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