Adam Malamed Rides Again – As CEO Of Sanctuary Wealth

Janeesa Hollingshead, Executive Editor, Wealth Solutions Report

Former Ladenburg EVP, COO And Board Director To Oversee Next Stage Of Growth Vision For Fast-Expanding RIA Aggregator

RIA aggregator and financial advisor consolidator Sanctuary Wealth has announced the appointment of Adam Malamed as its new Chief Executive Officer, effective immediately. Malamed replaces Jim Dickson in this role. 

Sanctuary Wealth has not provided additional information regarding the circumstances surrounding the departure of Dickson, and the press release announcing the CEO change made no mention of Dickson. However, sources familiar with the company suggest the former CEO was terminated by Sanctuary’s Board of Directors.

Adam Malamed, CEO, Sanctuary Wealth

Track Record For Driving Growth

Malamed, a widely recognized wealth management industry leader who shot to prominence as one of the primary architects of Ladenburg Thalmann’s growth and eventual sale to Advisor Group, was brought aboard to drive Sanctuary Wealth’s future growth, according to a press release.

At Ladenburg, Malamed served as Executive Vice President, Chief Operating Officer and a Board Director, overseeing the growth of the enterprise to 4,500 financial advisors and $200 billion in client assets. The enterprise value of Ladenburg upon its sale to Advisor Group, completed in early 2020, was $1.3 billion.

Since the sale of Ladenburg, Malamed has been CEO at Ajax Investment Partners, a fintech incubator and financial services M&A advisory firm.

Unsurprisingly, the sudden change in CEOs caused some industry watchers to wonder if this move is a prelude to a sale of Sanctuary Wealth, gossip that the company unequivocally states is wrong.

A company spokesperson said, “Adam Malamed’s appointment as CEO of Sanctuary is absolutely not part of a plan to sell the firm. That is simply not the case.”

The spokesperson further noted, “Sanctuary is in the strongest financial position in its history, and Adam will be the firm’s CEO for the long term. He is not there to initiate a sale of the firm but rather to oversee the ongoing growth strategy of Sanctuary as a thriving, independent and successful enterprise.”

Significant level of expansion

A financial advisor recruiter with knowledge of Sanctuary who declined to be identified supported this perspective, commenting, “It’s impossible for anybody outside of the company to know precisely what caused this CEO change. But generally, firms that have reached a significant level of expansion need to bring aboard much more professional CEOs who have a greater depth of strategy and operational know-how.”

According to the recruiter, “By all accounts, Adam Malamed is the real deal in this regard, and Sanctuary needs a leader that can systematize how the firm develops and aligns the next generation of solutions their financial advisors need. A CEO from a predominantly sales-based career isn’t going to work out for a company that is now Sanctuary Wealth’s current size.”

Leveraging Sanctuary’s Past To Bring It Into The Future 

In the five years since its 2018 launch, private equity-backed Sanctuary has quickly grown into a leading national network of independent wealth managers. Malamed intends to build upon that foundation.

“I am a big believer in taking the best elements of a firm’s culture and aligning it with corporate strategies and scalable solutions that consistently elevate the financial advisor and client service experience,” Malamed said in a statement. “This is precisely what we will achieve together at Sanctuary going forward.”

Headquartered in Indianapolis, Sanctuary fosters an ecosystem of “partnered independence” whereby it buys a minority stake in advisor practices in return for access to the services of various Sanctuary subsidiaries, including an RIA, broker-dealer, asset management and an insurance solution provider. Sanctuary currently has approximately $30 billion in client assets managed by 300-plus advisors in more than 75 partner firms across 28 states.

Janeesa Hollingshead, Executive Editor at Wealth Solutions Report, can be reached at

Related Posts

Sign Up for Our Newsletters

Sign Up for Our Newsletters