Prairie Financial Group Leadership
President & Chief Fiduciary Officer
As President & Chief Fiduciary Officer of Prairie Financial Group® (PFG), Victor is charged with overseeing the day-to-day management and fiduciary issues of the wealth management division, including personal trust, retirement plan, and investment management services and solutions.
Victor joined Prairie in November of 2013, initially leading its team of personal trust and estate professionals. Prior to joining PFG, Victor worked for Marshall & Ilsley Trust Company and BMO Harris Bank for 16 years. While there, he initially served as employee benefits counsel, then transferred to private wealth management where he managed the personal trust and not-for-profit services legal department and estate settlement group, and then served as the U.S. estate planning specialist for BMO Private Bank. Prior to joining M&I, Victor was a shareholder in the law firm of Cook & Franke, S.C. in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
Victor has been one of the leaders in modernizing and rewriting Wisconsin’s laws on trust, including the Wisconsin Trust Code, Wisconsin Principal and Income Act and the Wisconsin Prudent Investor Act. He served as co-chair of the study group that drafted and enacted the Wisconsin Trust Code in December of 2013. He is now working on the trailer bill that will further refine and improve Wisconsin’s trust laws. Victor is a frequent speaker and has spoken to and served on numerous committees and study groups for local bar associations, the State Bar of Wisconsin, the Wisconsin Institute of CPAs and both the Wisconsin and American Bankers Associations. He is a leading advocate for corporate trustee business in Wisconsin and serves as a director of the Wisconsin Bankers Association Trust Banking Section and WBA Government Relations Committee. He also serves on the boards of the Ellinger Foundation, the Children’s Hospital Planned Giving Council, the Life Navigators Trust Committee, and the Wispact Attorney Advisory Council. Nationally, he has been a member of the National Conference of Lawyers and Corporate Fiduciaries and the American Bankers Association Trust Counsel Committee.
He received his law degree from Marquette University Law School and his undergraduate degree in accounting from the UW–Madison. Victor and his wife, Jayna, live in Brookfield, Wisconsin and they have three daughters, Stacey, Melissa and Haylie.
Vice President - Chief Investment Officer
As Chief Investment Officer, Brian leads the investment services platform of Prairie Financial Group® (PFG). This includes directing investment and financial planning strategy and policies, asset allocation and portfolio positioning, leading Prairie’s investment committee, and providing daily oversight and guidance to PFG’s portfolio managers. Brian also oversees PFG’s research and due diligence process, and is responsible for articulating the firm’s investment philosophy.
Brian joined Prairie Financial Group in 2016 with more than 20 years of experience in the financial services industry, primarily providing financial planning and investment management services to retail and institutional clients. Having spent much of his career working directly with clients, Brian believes in purpose-driven investing, and that asset management works best when tied to goals or solves a problem. This belief forms the basis of PFG’s mission and philosophy: “By providing consistent communication and simplifying the investment process, clients gain the clarity and confidence to adhere to their financial plan.”
Brian is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and has earned the prestigious Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in accounting from Assumption College in Worcester, Massachusetts and is active in the community coaching various youth sports programs.
Senior Director - Fiduciary Sales
Terry joined Prairie Financial Group® (PFG) in 2014. His role as Director of Fiduciary Sales is to assist clients in achieving their fiduciary and asset management goals and to partner with outside advisors in providing their clients trustee services.
Terry has more than 30 years of experience in the financial services industry, including 12 years as an institutional broker and corporate bond trader. Prior to joining PFG, he worked for 10 years in the wealth management groups at BMO Harris and US Bank where he served in both business development and relationship management roles, focusing on high net worth clients and their families
Terry received both a B.A. in Economics and an MBA from Marquette University. He is former member of the Planned Giving committee at ProHealth Care, a former board member for Habitat for Humanity Wisconsin, and a past board treasurer for St. Anne’s Salvatorian Home. He currently lives in Sussex, Wisconsin with his wife, Sally, and has three children and two grandchildren.
Senior Personal Trust Associate
Jean started with Prairie Financial Group in 2018 and currently serves as senior personal trust associate. As part of the Trust Services team, she is responsible for supporting Prairie's senior trust administrators with an emphasis on estate settlement administration, real estate management and contract review. Prior to joining Prairie, Jean worked as a staff attorney with Bank Mutual. She has broad legal skills and is an expert in analysis and negotiation of contracts, bank account titling and real estate transactions.
Jean holds a Juris Doctor from Northwestern University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from Northwestern University. She is active in the community volunteering with Feeding America Eastern Wisconsin and Boy Scout Troop 530. She and her family currently reside in Greenfield.
J. Bernard (Bernie) Fiedler
Wealth Management Consultant
As Wealth Management Consultant and Past-President of Prairie Financial Group (PFG), J. Bernard (Bernie) Fiedler is an active member of the senior leadership team, specializing in advisor-friendly alliance coordination, financial planning, and the specialty asset needs of the firm.
Bernie has over 30 years of industry experience, which includes the 25 years he served as President of PFG. He chartered the advisor-friendly alliance more than 20 years ago, and has an extensive background in trust and estate administration, individual financial planning, and investment management including institutional accounts.
Bernie holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education, and is a graduate of the Stonier Graduate School of Banking.He has earned the following nationally recognized certifications: Certified Financial Planner (CFP®), Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CTFA®), Accredited Investment Fiduciary Analyst (AFIA®).
He is a former director and past-chair of the Wisconsin Bankers Association Trust Section, a former director and past-president of the Financial Planning Association (FPA), and a former director and past president of the Partnership for Philanthropic Planning (PPP). Bernie is a member of the La Casa Investment Committee and has previously served as a director of the Potawatomi Area Council Boy Scouts and senior elder at Oakwood Church.
Further supporting his commitment to improving outcomes is his work with Royal Family Kids Camp, Make a Difference Wisconsin, the Ziemann Foundation, Inc. and Opportunities, Inc.
Vice President - Retirement Services Relationship Manager
Annette heads the employee benefits area of Prairie Financial Group – an area specifically focused on clients with retirement savings. This area is inclusive of both corporate plans established for the benefit of a company’s employees (such as 401(k) Plans) and individual retirement arrangements (IRAs). Annette works with her team to address day-to-day activities and operations necessary to establish, support and service these types of accounts. She also works with her team to help facilitate strong connections between the client and the investment team of Prairie Financial Group, as well as any other areas of the department or bank that may help meet the client’s needs. Annette and her team have Plan and IRA experience and expertise that include: plan design; document support; all aspects of third-party record keeping (including contribution / distribution processing, non-discrimination testing, participant loans, 5500 preparation, etc.); required minimum distribution calculations; tax reporting; and employee education and enrollment meetings.
Annette has worked at Waukesha State Bank for more than 25 years, with the majority of that time spent in the trust department. The department’s focus on retirement savings clients, and Annette’s role in providing oversight and management, have both expanded in scope and size over the years.
As a graduate of Carroll University with a B.A. in Business, Annette has continued her business development and education by pursuing various courses. She continues to stay current with the ever-changing rules and laws relating to employee benefit plans and IRAs by attending seminars and conferences, participating in recordkeeping user groups and subscribing to various industry resources.
Annette is married with one daughter who attends Waukesha South High School. She is a past board member and allocations chair with the United Way of Waukesha County. She enjoys volunteering with her church and spending time with her family – especially outdoor activities such as hiking, biking, in-line skating and participating in fun runs.
Vice President - Manager of Personal Trust
As the Manager of Personal Trust at Prairie Financial Group®, Diem delivers trust and estate expertise to individuals and families to help manage the complexities of wealth preservation at all stages of life. As an advisor, or acting as a corporate trustee, she develops and implements the range of solutions available to meet each client’s needs and expectations based on the complex financial and emotional issues of trust and estate management.
Prior to joining Prairie Financial Group, Diem was a Personal Trust Officer in the Probate & Estate Settlement Services Group with The Private Client Reserve of U.S. Bank for over 19 years.
Diem earned her B.A. from Indiana University in 1989 and her J.D. from the University of Notre Dame in 1992. Diem is a member of the Wisconsin State Bar Association, the Secretary and Treasurer for the Waukesha County Bar Association, Probate & Estate Planning Section, and a Board Member and Secretary for Roger Memorial Hospital Foundation. Diem is bilingual, with fluency in conversational Vietnamese. She is married with three children, and is a licensed foster parent.
Vice President - Manager of Accounting & Business Operations
As Accounting and Business Operations Manager at Prairie Financial Group® (PFG), Lisa is charged with the financial analysis, reporting, and strategic planning for the department. She oversees the internal operations department and manages the relationship with our back office, Reliance Trust Company, maintains compliance records, and serves as the primary point of contact for auditors and regulators. In addition, Lisa monitors and maintains all of PFG’s licenses, permits and contract renewals, and serves as the project manager for various department initiatives.
Prior to joining PFG in 2016, Lisa managed the office of a local boutique financial planning firm for nearly ten years.
Lisa is a Certified Public Accountant and earned her B.S. in business with majors in accounting and finance from the Curtis L. Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota. She is active in the community, volunteering with Girl Scouts of Wisconsin Southeast. And in 2017, Lisa was honored with Waukesha State Bank’s Golden Eagle Award – the highest employee recognition.
Senior Portfolio Manager
As a Senior Portfolio Manager with Prairie Financial Group® (PFG), Kelly works closely with all divisions of the organization, including investment management, trust and retirement plans. She serves each of these divisions in researching and constructing, educating, implementing and monitoring portfolios, as well as partnering with our outside advisor platform to meet the long-term financial needs of our clients. Kelly is also a member of the PFG Investment Subcommittee.
Kelly has over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry, with more than 15 of those years working in investment advisory services. She has extensive experience with fiduciary investment management, individual financial planning and investment management of individual, trust, retirement and institutional accounts. Kelly is a Certified Financial Planner® and an Accredited Investment Fiduciary®. She graduated with a bachelor’s of science in education from the UW-Whitewater – Summa Cum Laude.
Kelly is a former Great Blue Heron Girl Scout Council Investment Committee member. She has also served in many roles with the Financial Planning Association of Wisconsin including board secretary, symposium committee chair and audit committee member. When not working in her Senior Portfolio Manager roles, Kelly enjoys spending time with family and keeps busy being involved with her three children as they play basketball, softball, baseball and volleyball.
Vice President - Senior Trust Administrator
Nancy joined Prairie Financial Group® (PFG) in December 2013 and is responsible for the administration of trusts, estates, and employee benefits plans. She is the principal in our partnership with Fox River State Bank in Burlington, Wisconsin to bring trust and investment services to clients of Fox River State Bank and to members of the Burlington and surrounding communities.
Prior to joining Prairie Financial Group, Nancy worked at Talmer Bank f/k/a First Banking Center in Burlington for thirteen years. While there, she supervised trust operations and administered trusts and employee benefits plans. Nancy also previously worked in the wealth management department at Norstates Bank in Waukegan, Illinois for seven years where she was involved in various aspects of the Trust business.
She received her bachelor’s of business administration in finance from UW-Whitewater in 1991. She also earned her Retirement Services Professional Certification and completed Trust I from Cannon Financial Institute in 2002.
Nancy believes in using her skills to help the community. She serves as a volunteer and committee member for the Life Navigator’s Trust Program. She is also a member of the Walworth Estate Planning Council.
Senior Retirement Officer
As senior retirement officer of Prairie Financial Group® (PFG), Theresa serves as the primary contact for a number of retirement accounts, including 401(k) plans, SIMPLEs and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). In addition, she also supervises the overall management of all of PFG’s IRA relationship, interacts with employers and services the needs of individual participants and IRA holders. She takes great satisfaction in making personal connections with her customers and helping to meet their needs.
Theresa joined PFG in 2000 as an intern before being promoted to the Retirement Plan Services area.
Theresa is a Certified IRA Services Professional (CISP). She earned an associate’s degree from UW–Waukesha and a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Carroll University. She continues her education by attending seminars and webinars, participating in record-keeping user groups and subscribing to industry resources.
Angie joined Prairie Financial Group® (PFG) in 2013 and currently serves as retirement specialist. As part of the Retirement Services team, she assists with managing various types of retirement accounts including 401k plans, SIMPLEs and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). Prior to joining PFG, Angie worked with IRAs and provided other banking services to individual and commercial customers at Waukesha State Bank for three years.
Angie earned her bachelor’s degree in finance from the UW–Milwaukee. She is active in the community volunteering with the American Cancer Society’s advocacy arm, the Cancer Action Network.
Senior Personal Trust Associate
Matthew started with Prairie Financial Group® in 2017 and currently serves as senior personal trust associate. As part of the Trust Services team, he is responsible for supporting Prairie's senior trust administrators with the ongoing management of personal trust and estate settlement clients with an emphasis on real estate and closely held business management. Prior to joining Prairie, Matthew worked as a senior analyst with BMO Harris Bank N.A. He has more than 17 years of trust and investment experience specializing in business valuation and financial analysis.
Matthew obtained his master's in business administration from Columbia College in Columbia, Missouri and is active in the community serving as treasurer and finance committee chair for the Eisenhower Center, Inc.’s board of directors. He and his family currently reside in Greenfield.
Vice President - Senior Trust Administrator
Michele brings years of specialized trust experience, seasoned with a passion to care for her clients, as a Senior Trust Administrator at Prairie Financial Group® (PFG). She handles the many details involved in day-to-day trust administration, including the interpretation of trust and legal documents, opening and closing accounts, beneficiary distributions, asset transfers and bill paying. Michele enjoys working closely with her clients to ensure that their financial needs, goals and objectives are being met.
Prior to joining PFG, Michele was Vice President and Trust Officer for Marshall & Ilsley Trust Company and BMO Harris Bank for 25 years.
Having a bachelor’s of business administration degree in finance and economics as a solid basis, Michele has attended a number of specialized courses in advanced trust administration over the years. This has culminated in her attainment of the well-respected industry designation of Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CTFA). The CTFA designation requires ongoing education in the fields of finance, particular to trust administration, as well as a strict code of ethics. Michele also participates with her peers as a member of the Waukesha County Estate Planning Council.
Michele strongly believes in giving back to the community. She is on the Board of Directors for the Friends of Boerner Botanical Gardens and is a volunteer Big Sister with Big Brothers & Big Sisters of Metro Milwaukee. She and her husband, Greg, reside in Waukesha and enjoy traveling.
Vice President - Senior Trust Administrator
At Prairie Financial Group® (PFG), Steve is responsible for administering trusts, estates, guardianships and investment management accounts. He has over eighteen years of experience in the financial services industry, serving primarily as a trust administrator.
Prior to joining PFG, Steve worked at a large regional trust company and also managed a trust department for a community bank.
Steve graduated from the UW-Stevens Point with a degree in business administration. He attended Cannon Trust School where he earned the Certified Trust and Financial Advisor (CTFA®) designation in 2003, and completed the financial planning certificate coursework at Waukesha County Technical College and became a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ in 2008.
Matt Fischer, Personal Trust Associate
Barb Mueller, Operations Specialist
Julie Zagrodnik, Administrative Assistant