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Who We Are 

FES is Driven to Make It Easier for Your Donors to Support Your Programs

Our team of industry-leading professionals is passionate about the success of non-profits in the United States.   We have engaged tax specialists at one of the oldest and most respected law firms in the state of Florida, in order to innovate the non-profit funding space in an effort to help you mount a significant campaign to increase funding in the near and long term and overcome today’s many obstacles.    

Long Term Sustainability for Your Organization and Your Valued Donors 

Contact us today to set up a free consultation with our team.  Once we understand your program’s needs and operations, we will devise methods to increase your revenue from existing and prospective contributors.  This will not require more checks to be written by your patrons.  We will also assist in locating any funding avenues and dollars that may have been missed or tied up unnecessarily.    

Your Advocate

FES is your financial advocate and consultant working with your not-for-profit organization to help cover initial and long-term costs during funding downturns.  Your passion creates opportunity, our solution helps you sustain it.

Foundation Enhancement Strategies Board

Craig Waldenmaier Principal

Craig is a nationally recognized top producer and owner of First Choice Brokerage, one of the largest wholesale insurance brokerage firms in the United States. Craig’s passion is advanced wealth accumulation and preservation strategies.  He dynamically shares his ideas throughout the nation as a speaker.  

For over 30 years, he has helped hundreds of high net worth families and businesses with their planning strategies. In addition to his personal production, he founded First Choice Brokerage in 1994 and has been CEO since.  

He is a member of AALU, the International Forum, Million Dollar Round Table, Top of the Table and served as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Insurance Designers of America.  

Craig has passion for giving back to the community through several charitable non-profit organizations such as Tim Tebow Foundation, Griffin Moody Scholarship Fund, Jacksonville Beaches Museum and History Park, Ponte Vedra High School Sharks Football Boosters, Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and Gateway Girl Scout Council.  Craig really enjoys sponsoring Boy Scout Eagle Scout and Girl Scout Gold Award projects along with the many high school and college students with their own personal philanthropy organizations and events.

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Tom-Finley

Thomas Finley, MBA Principal

Tom is responsible for product development for First Choice Strategies, LLC. (“First Choice”). In addition, he heads up the financing effort for various individual and group premium finance transactions. 

Prior to joining First Choice, Tom was an Investment Banker for approximately 20 years and has successfully executed structured transactions with an aggregate fair market value in excess of $14 billion. 

Most recently, Tom was a Managing Director at Merrill Lynch and was responsible for developing, marketing, and executing proprietary structured transactions for Merrill Lynch and its clients. While at Merrill Lynch, he developed various insurance related products including premium finance and life settlements. His clients at Merrill Lynch included corporate entities, financial institutions and high net worth individuals.

Prior to working at Merrill Lynch, Tom worked at Bankers Trust Company, Citibank, N.A. and Arthur Andersen. 

Tom received his M.B.A. in Finance/International Business from New York University, Leonard N. Stern School for Business and received his B.S. in Accounting from the State University of New York at Albany. Outside of work, he loves to watch movies and spend his time with his girlfriend.

Joseph H. Arnall Principal

Joe started in life insurance during college at age 18 in 1965. Since then, he has represented many excellent companies matching his clients with the very best available products and methods. He is a Chartered Life Underwriter, Chartered Financial Consultant and a Life Member of the Million Dollar Round Table. In 1995, he received the highest award for community service , the JC Snead award, from the Association of Life Underwriters in Jacksonville.

He was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 1988. While in the Legislature, Joe was a member of numerous committees. He became Chairman of the influential Utilities and Communications Committee and Chaired the powerful Rules and Calendar Committee his last two years. During his career he received numerous awards for his service and effectiveness (in addition to being unopposed 4 times for reelection) such as: “Legislator of the Year” from the Florida Sheriffs Association, Florida Grocers Association, Florida Life Underwriters, Florida Realtors and the Florida Chamber of Commerce. The Miami Herald named Joe in the top 10 of the most effective members of the House and the Senate in each of his last 4 years.

Joe graduated from Sewanee Military Academy in Sewanee ,Tennessee. He began his college education at the Citadel in Charleston, South Carolina. He then transferred to the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee where he earned a BA in Psychology.

He helped found the First Coast Family and Housing Foundation as Chairman. He stepped down after 6 years, after providing housing units to 715 families in need. Additionally, he is a member of the Board of Trustees for Southeastern Legal Foundation in Atlanta. He has served as chairman of this legal advocacy group for 10 years.

He enjoys time with his daughters and grandchildren, college sports and socializing with his friends.  He also enjoys reading, working out and jogging.

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