Don Pitti, one of the founders and supporters of the financial planning movement, died last week. His death was reported by his colleagues at Joel Isaacson & Co., where he had served as an counselor in recent years.
Pitti served as chairman of two of the Financial Planning Association's predecessor organizations, the Society of Financial Counseling and the International Association for Financial Planning (IAFP), and more recently, as chair of the Foundation for Financial Planning.
In 2008, FPA gave its P. Kemp Fain award to Pitti for his contribution to the development of the profession. Unlike the vast majority of past recipients of the Fain award, Pitti was never a financial planning practitioner.
However, he was a visionary thinker who was instrumental in working towards the development of financial planning as a profession. Past recipients of the Fain award included such noted practitioners as Charles Hughes, Jack Blankinship, Richard Wagner, Alexandra Armstrong and Bill Carter.
Pitti joined the IAFP in 1969. He spent much of his career in senior marketing and management positions at Nuveen Investments and J & W Seligman. After he retired in 1994, Pitti remained very active. He became the founding director of the Financial Services Institute in the Tobin College of Business at St. John's University in New York, where he later continued to serve as an adjunct professor of finance.
"The Institute, under Don's leadership organized lectures, contributed to the training of international priests, and since 2006 offers an annual symposium where research papers on financial topics are presented. Don volunteered his time for all of these activities," comments Igor M. Tomic, the Institute's academic director, in a memoriam.
In the last decade, Pitti also helped to get the Foundation For Financial Planning off the ground.
A memorial service for Pitti will be held Wednesday, December 30, at noon at The Congregational Church of Manhasset, 1845 Northern Blvd., Manhasset, N.Y. For more information, call (516) 627-4911.