Tammy Trenta Knowlton

  • Founder/CEO

    Family Financial LLC 

  • Address

    1117 5th St., Unit D, Manhattan Beach

  • Phones

    310-486-6763

  • Website | Social

    familyfinancial.biz
    FB: Tammy Trenta Knowlton
    IG: @tammytrenta

  • Special Section

    Women of the South Bay

Tammy Trenta Knowlton’s financial advisory firm has one specific focus: helping clients accelerate their wealth and keeping more of what they earn. They provide financial planning, investment management, estate planning, tax preparation and other business management services. Tammy launched the company this year and has worked in the financial industry for 26 years. She is a Certified Financial Planner, a Certified Tax Coach and a Certified Exit Planning Advisor.


Why did you choose to start your firm?

Thinking back, I believe that each career move has been a stepping stone to starting my firm. After 26 years of professional experience and two or three major life experiences, I realized that my passion for helping people and my specific skills could be best utilized by having the freedom to advocate for clients without conflict of interest, corporate objectives or bureaucracy. It is incredibly empowering to know that nothing gets in the way of helping my clients achieve their financial goals.  


How did you choose your career in finance?

I grew up on the East Coast in a middle-class family, and my parents were big spenders. During my first year of college, I received a call from my dad that my parents were splitting up. They were highly leveraged in real estate and ended up losing everything—including my college fund. In order to finish college, I took on student loans, waited tables and then applied to law school. However, the thought of incurring more debt for my education without having a clear career path gave me pause. I decided to work for a few years to see what type of career resonated with me.

When I discovered finance, I was extremely motivated to become financially literate so     I could support myself, make good financial decisions and prevent what happened to my parents from happening to me. It was at that point that I decided to pursue my MBA in finance and obtain my CFP. Now I have the privilege of helping others. 


If you could begin again, what would you want to “do over” in your career?

You need to experience the highs and lows in order to grow as a person. I have certainly endured my share of challenging times, but it has made me appreciate all that I have achieved and has undoubtedly made me a better financial advocate for my clients. I think you need to look back and be grateful for those experiences that shape you as a person. If I could change one thing, I wish I had started my firm 10 years ago.


What has been the most significant barrier in your career?

It’s hard not to look inward to see what holds us back. Fear has been my most significant barrier. Fear of rejection, failure, the unknown—it clouds good decision-making. There will always be an excuse or reason standing in the way of a goal or dream. I no longer allow it to control me or define me.


What is the #1 thing you do to ensure your business is successful?

It’s an interesting dynamic, but to me it’s simple. I think you genuinely need to care. At some point, as companies grow they start to focus on the wrong things. If your clients feel that you care and your team members feel that you care, success comes naturally.


How do you balance work and play?

In addition to work and play, I think you need to include “me” time. I am in a profession that requires me to serve others. I think it’s important to periodically take some time for myself so I can show up at my best     for others. Spending a long weekend at a wellness spa definitely helps me recharge my batteries.


What advice do you give your kids? 

I’m not sure how well my 5-year-old son, Jack, listens to my advice. I think it has to be more of an experience at this age. He has a piggy bank, and there are some ways he can earn money. I help him sell or donate his clothes and toys. He gets the money and can count it and decide what he wants to spend it on. It’s fun to see him make choices, trading one want for another—immediate gratification versus delayed gratification. It gives him a sense of accomplishment and freedom.


Tell us about a few of your passions.

I am passionate about teaching others and about health, wellness and longevity. I also enjoy cooking and hosting dinners with family and friends.


How do you find time to fit it all in?

Time is without question our most valuable asset. I love that many of us have gotten some time back by having the freedom to work from home and spend quality time with family. I encourage it because I know how much I value it. I think the trade-off to remote work is the risk of losing connection with your team and your employees. I like to set up quarterly retreats to spend quality time with my work family. Feeling happy and fulfilled both personally and professionally helps maintain relationships and inspires a good work ethic. 


Disclaimer: This should not be considered investment advice or an offer to sell any product. Family Financial is an independent investment adviser registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. More information about Family Financial’s investment advisory services and fees can be found in its Form ADV Part 2, which is available at www.familyfinancial.biz