A Newport Beach, Calif.-based broker formerly with Oppenheimer has launched a new independent practice in partnership with LPL Financial’s Strategic Wealth Services (SWS), an affiliation model for breakaway advisors, LPL announced today.

Tower 68 Financial Advisors, led by founder and CEO Ken South, managed about $550 million in advisory, brokerage and retirement plan assets with Oppenheimer.

South, who began his career at E.F. Hutton & Company in 1985, founded his solo practice in 2006. He was previously with Smith Barney (Citigroup), according to his BrokerCheck profile. At Tower 68 Financial Advisors, he is joined by COO Steve Arcos and an experienced operational support team, the release said. The team, the release said, manages handpicked portfolios, which are customized to fit each client’s personality and needs.

The team chose LPL after substantial research and due diligence, the release said. “LPL provides our clients with an incredibly robust online experience. The simplified, intuitive technology gives clients the tools and resources they need to be able to view their entire portfolio and easily upload information,” South said in a statement. “My team also believes that LPL’s trading platform is second to none. We can manage trades with complete objectivity, allowing us to put our clients’ best interests at the forefront of everything we do.”

He added that the team also is excited about the depth of dedicated support provided by the SWS model. “We’ve built great relationships with LPL’s SWS staff, who we consider an extended part of our team, and they provide strategic coaching and expertise in areas that are not my core competencies,” he said.

South, the release said, teaches stocks and bonds to high school senior economics students, and also implements financial education and coaching within the practice to help clients understand the big picture of their finances.