Serving generations of accomplished clients nationwide, The Zelniker Dorfman Group is well regarded for its deep experience, portfolio development, and highly personal service.
“By doing more for clients and their families, we play key roles in their lives – especially, during challenging transitions and difficult circumstances. We stay in touch and on top of clients’ goals for themselves, their children and grandchildren. The rigor of our friendly service model gives us a genuine sense of clients’ multi-generational needs,” says Scott Zelniker.
As a “first call” for many clients, the team serves active and retired business owners (leading up to and beyond liquidity events), senior executives, financial colleagues, accountants, professional athletes and entertainers, retired couples and widows.
Focused on minimizing risk, achieving positive returns and maintaining liquidity in client portfolios, The Zelniker Dorfman Group formulates its own models. “We’re not controlled by outside mandates or benchmarks. We’re driven by research and client goals,” Peter Dorfman explains. “We actively rotate sectors, adjust equity-to-cash ratios, and use dividends to dampen volatility.
In building clients’ estate planning strategies, efforts are coordinated with their other advisors and the firm’s trust specialists. To enhance clients’ overall wealth, the team pays close attention to both sides of clients’ balance sheets – and provides access to liquidity, as needed.
“Clients we serve are busy and their concerns take precedent. That’s why we visit clients at their offices or homes, in town or out of town. We also make ourselves available to clients – often, when family issues are keeping them awake at night. We’ve come to know and admire clients – and we feel privileged to manage their assets, liabilities and expectations. We take each client’s wellbeing personally – as if we were serving our own families,” Scott adds.
Scott Zelniker, CRPC®, CRPS®
Scott handles macro strategic planning, investment oversight, portfolio construction and wealth planning for clients – many of whom have been with him for decades. In 1992 Scott began his career in financial services at Merrill Lynch, developing a practice working extensively with private business owners. Scott provides solutions to his clients’ needs with an emphasis on exit strategies and ultimate liquidity events, and their contribution to overall financial and long-term estate plans. In 2016, Scott, along with his partner Peter, joined UBS Wealth Management to use the vast resources to find optimal solutions for their clients.
Scott holds the designation of Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor (CRPC®) and and Chartered Retirement Plans Specialist (CRPS®) awarded by the college for Financial Planning. Over the years, he has shared his best practices to industry professionals and has participated as a panelist for the Money Management Institute (MMI). A graduate of Boston University, Scott earned a degree in Finance. He also holds an MBA in Finance and Business Management from Hofstra University.
Scott and his wife, Lisa, split their time between Long Island and Lakewood Ranch in Sarasota, Florida. Their two sons are graduates of Binghamton University and their daughter is a cheerleader at Syracuse University. Scott has coached hockey and served 15 years as a Great Neck PAL volunteer. He supports several local organizations in the Sarasota area, including The YMCA Foundation of Sarasota, The V Foundation for Cancer Research – supporting a cure for pediatric cancer, The Sarasota Memorial Healthcare Foundation, Ringling College of Art & Design and Nathan Benderson Park. Scott is a member of the Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance.
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Peter leads the group’s investment committee and is responsible for the research of equities, fixed income, and alternative investments, as well as portfolio construction and analytics. Peter launched his career at Merrill Lynch in 1997, and later joined Scott to create The Zelniker Dorfman Group. Together, they built a wealth management practice that today serves multiple generations of their clients’ families. Now at UBS Wealth Management, Peter uses extensive research to analyze and construct strategies most suitable for his clients. Through Peter’s holistic discovery process, he evaluates the needs of each client family to understand what they are trying to accomplish. Using a goals-based approach that focuses on clients’ objectives – not industry benchmarks – he selects an appropriate blend of investments to manage risk within the parameters of his short, intermediate, and long-term market outlook.
Peter is a graduate of the University of Vermont and lives in Westport, Connecticut with his family. He enjoys skiing, golf, traveling, and especially time spent with his wife Alison and their two daughters. Peter supports several local and national charities, many of which are important to his clients and their families, including St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and The No Greater Sacrifice Organization.
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Jolene joined The Zelniker Dorfman Group while at Merrill Lynch in 2006. Now with over a decade of experience with the team, at UBS Wealth Management Jolene is the clients’ primary point of contact for their non-financial needs. With a strong commitment to accuracy and detail, Jolene implements the team’s Client Service Model and handles client-facing administrative functions. She believes that providing superior client experience demands that she serve as a “client concierge.” She is also a Client Service Associate team coach, acting as a mentor and sharing her best practices with her peers in the branch. Jolene holds a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Brooklyn College and received her Master’s in Corporate Communication from Baruch College.
Jolene lives on Long Island with her husband, TJ and their dog, Ruffers. She is active in her community and passionate about volunteering and fundraising for local organizations including New York Says Thank You, Wounded Warriors and Voices of September 11th.
Molly Townsend, CFP®
Molly leads the team’s detailed financial planning process. She takes a holistic approach to fully understand clients’ life priorities and goals for their wealth before charting a realistic financial course and putting investments into motion. Her planning process includes analyses for retirement, education, taxation, and legacy wealth transfer, among other topics. Working with our employer-sponsored retirement plans means Molly is always adapting to changing legislation around ERISA, the Department of Labor, and tax codes. She is also the team’s primary resource on social security, pension income, life insurance, annuities, and long-term care.
Molly is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, a designation awarded by the CFP® Board of Standards, Inc. She joined the financial services industry in 2008, working in wealth management in her hometown of Chicago before moving to New York to join The Zelniker Dorfman Group in early 2015. At UBS Wealth Management, Molly creates robust financial plans for the team’s clients. Molly graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she earned a BA in International Studies.
In her free time, Molly enjoys reading, running, Pilates, traveling and music. She lives with her husband, Alex, in the Boerum Hill neighborhood of Brooklyn. Molly is passionate about youth outreach and is involved in several organizations both in NYC and Chicago, including A Leg to Stand On, Stand Up for Kids and The Chicago Children’s Choir.
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Ryan joined The Zelniker Dorfman Group in July of 2015 while at Merrill Lynch. At UBS, Ryan is a financial advisor focusing on client acquisition and the development of new relationships for the team. In October of 2018, Ryan moved down to Florida to help support the team's clients and efforts in the Sarasota and Lakewood Ranch community. Ryan is a strong communicator that values relationships and develops strong bonds with his clients.
Ryan is actively involved and supports many of the organizations in the area and is currently a member of the Lakewood Ranch Business Alliance and their Young Leaders Alliance as well as the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce and their Young Professionals Group.
Ryan holds a BA in Finance from the School of Business at Villanova University. While at Villanova, Ryan participated in many philanthropic services, including the Villanova Day of Service and volunteered with Catholic Charities rebuilding homes in New Orleans after the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. He was also a captain of the school’s club lacrosse team.
In his free time, Ryan enjoys golfing, fishing, skiing. Born in New York City and raised in Chatham, New Jersey, Ryan is passionate about supporting the New York Yankees and New York Jets along with his alma mater's men's basketball team. He currently lives in Lakewood Ranch, FL
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