The Financial Services Industry is the cornerstone of Topeka, Kansas’ economy. It accounts for a large percentage of the population’s employment and has been instrumental in contributing to community development and growth. At certain points in Topeka’s history, key industry players even proved to be a guiding force to elevating the prestige of the Capital City of Kansas.
Advisors Excel (AE) was established in 2005 by three innovative Kansans: Cody Foster, Derek Thompson and David Callanan. AE provides service to financial advisors and brokers from across the U.S. Although at its inception the company focused primarily on fixed index annuities, they have since expanded into life insurance and investments.
One of AE’s very special features is its in-house ad agency. This team helps advisors with everything from business logos, letterheads, websites, radio commercials and more.
According to Cody, Topeka has been their biggest competitive advantage. “From a service-based standpoint, you’re only as good your people and the people here are awesome,” he says. “It’s never been a challenge to find good people.” Indeed, the company has benefited from its capable employees. And, in turn, AE has become a fixture in the Topeka business community and a strong supporter of many civic and philanthropic endeavors.
In 2020, construction was completed on AE’s second campus at Gage Center. This expansion brought over 200 new full-time jobs, resulting in an economic impact of $12.4 million. In total, AE has over 700 employees in the Topeka & Shawnee County area. The second campus expansion is thanks in part to an incentive contributed by the Joint Economic Development Organization (JEDO) of Shawnee County.
FHLBank of TOPEKA
FHLBank Topeka’s history is a unique one.
Of his many personal crusades as Vice President, Charles Curtis, Topeka native, wanted to help breathe new life into the economy. In 1932, his work led to the creation of the Federal Home Loan Bank (FHLBank), and its location in Topeka is his doing.
In a statement made in 2016 during the dedication of a statue made in Curtis’ image in Downtown Topeka, Pat Doran, executive vice president, FHLBank Topeka, remarked:
“Charles Curtis has a special place in FHLBank Topeka history. In fact, we wouldn’t be here in Topeka if it wasn’t for him. In 1931, at the height of the Great Depression, hundreds of thousands of American families were losing their savings and their homes, as lending institutions collapsed. Home lending ground to a virtual halt. This economic shock exposed major weaknesses in the foundation of home financing and homeownership in the U.S. With the home lending market in peril, President Hoover called for innovative measures to reform the system. Alarmed by the failures, and deeply troubled by signs that homeownership was beginning to erode, Hoover urged Congress to find ways to restore liquidity to the system….The result, the Federal Home Loan Bank Act was signed into law on July 22, 1932. The act created a central reserve credit system made up of 12 banks located across the country. Their mission was to support residential mortgage lending and community investment by providing credit to savings and loan associations…Charles Curtis is a big reason FHLBank Topeka is in our community. Many of the other FHLBanks are located in major metropolitan areas like New York, San Francisco, Boston, Dallas and Atlanta. Thanks to native Kansan Charles Curtis, who was vice president of the United States under President Hoover at the time the Federal Home Loan Banks were created, one of the banks is located in Topeka.”
“Helping people achieve financial well-being since 1892.”
With a legacy spanning over 129 years, Security Benefit has held true to the enduring belief that everyone deserves the opportunity to achieve financial security. Therefore, the core of its brand is based on a handshake between the original knights and Ladies of Security, the fraternal association, predecessor to Security Benefit, built a national reputation for ingenuity and philanthropy in 1892.
Today, Security Benefit is a privately held financial services company focused on the U.S. retirement space. In the past decade, we’ve experienced tremendous growth—more than tripling our employee base to 2,000 worldwide and almost quintupling our assets under management to $46.4 billion (as of December 31, 2020).
Keeping with its core principles of wisdom, protection and security, Security Benefit’s Charitable Trust focus extends to more than 100 organizations that serve low-income and at-risk individuals; promote education, health and the arts; and support diversity initiatives.
Security Benefit collaborates on numerous community efforts designed to enhance economic and workplace development. The company played an integral role in the launch of Topeka’s Play and Play initiative in 2020, which will position the community as a regional accelerator for animal health and agtech startups working in the Animal Health Corridor.