Our specialty lies in the design, installation, and annual administration of retirement plans for closely-held business owners looking to maximize retirement savings and seeking the optimal tax-deductible contribution. Our goal is to creatively apply the technical requirements of the tax code to design a retirement plan that achieves the employer's financial objectives on an annual basis. Often this allows business owners to maximize contributions beyond Defined Contribution limits while minimizing or reducing employee cost. All work performed on a Karel-Gordon designed Plan from initial plan design through annual administration is completed by our experienced team.
History of the firm:
Jerry Karel started the firm in 1975 as the need for expertise in navigating ERISA laws grew. In 1977, Marc Gordon joined the firm and is the firm's Managing Partner. Together, with their team of experienced professionals, they have designed and administered in excess of 4,800 Plans. Karel-Gordon & Associates currently administers approximately 1,000 plans and is supported by a staff of 20 employees, including actuaries, consultants, and qualified plan administrators.
The Importance of Experience:
With the constant evolution of tax law, Department of Labor regulations and IRS changes, we believe it is extremely important to have a very experienced and trained team of professionals working on the design and administration of a retirement plan. As such, we have three enrolled actuaries and six administrators on staff with an average tenure of 19 years. Lastly, our plan Consultants who play an integral role in both the design as well as the entire life cycle of our plans have been working in the retirement planning industry on average of 25 years.
Jerry Karel founded the firm in 1975, which has established and administered over 4,800 plans to date. He has been very active in pension administration and consulting since his establishment of the firm. Jerry has been a speaker for the Illinois CPA Society and the American Society of Pension Actuaries on pension related issues. He has a B.S. in Accounting from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and has been a CPA in Illinois since 1962. Jerry lives with his wife of 50 years in the northern suburbs of Chicago as well as in Scottsdale, Arizona.
Marc Gordon joined Karel-Gordon & Associates in 1977. In addition to managing the business, he has been providing clients with administrative and consulting services for over 34 years. Marc is very active in several networking groups that keep him apprised of the latest issues affecting the pension plan industry. He graduated from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign with a degree in History. An avid golfer, Marc lives with his wife in the northern suburbs of Chicago.
Joining the firm in 1982, Beverly Platt has over 30 years of experience in the pension industry. She currently provides pension consulting services to our clients and holds the designation of Enrolled Retirement Plan Agent (ERPA), which allows her to represent clients before the IRS. Beverly is a member of the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries (ASPPA) with a Qualified Pension Administration (QPA) designation. She graduated from Northeastern Illinois University with a B.A. in mathematics. Beverly and her husband live in Chicago with their son. She enjoys running, reading and traveling with her family.
Seth Silverman joined Karel-Gordon & Associates as a Pension Consultant in 2005. He has spent the last nine years designing and implementing qualified retirement plans. He regularly speaks to professional groups on topics related to retirement planning. Seth earned his B.A. in Economics from the University of Iowa. He lives in Deerfield with his wife and three daughters.
Holly Danziger joined Karel-Gordon & Associates in 2011 as a Pension Consultant. Prior to joining the firm, Holly worked as the National Accounts Director at two different investment management firms. Throughout Holly’s career in the Retirement Planning business she has worked with Broker Dealers, Financial Advisors, CPA’s and Attorney’s as they help their clients find the appropriate solutions to meet their goals. Holly earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Finance from the University of Iowa. A Registered Corporate Coach, Holly holds her Series 7 and 63 licenses, and is working toward the Qualified Plan Financial Consultant Program (QPFC) designation of ASPPA. She lives in the northern suburbs of Chicago with her husband and two children.
Theodore Miraski joined our firm in 1981 and provides actuarial services to our clients. Ted has over 40 years of experience in this industry and is considered an expert in the area of pension matters in divorce situations. He earned his B.S. in Mathematics from Drexel University and is a member of the American Academy of Actuaries, the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries and the ASPPA College of Pension Actuaries. Ted enjoys listening to classical music and National Public Radio.
Susan Evans started with our firm in 1995 and provides actuarial services to our clients. She has over 30 years of experience in the industry and is a member of the American Academy of Actuaries and the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries. Susan graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a B.S. in Actuarial Science.
Walter Blackman joined Karel Gordon & Associates in 2012 and provides actuarial services to our clients. He has over 20 years of experience in the pension consulting industry and is a Fellow of the Conference of Consulting Actuaries, a member of the Society of Actuaries, the American Academy of Actuaries, the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries, and the Caribbean Actuarial Association. Walter graduated from the University of the West Indies with a B.S. in Public Administration, and from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln with an M.S. in Actuarial Science. He enjoys playing cricket and watching professional soccer and tennis.
Paul Scardicchio joined Karel-Gordon & Associates in 2005 to manage our 401(k) department and to review defined contribution plans. He has over fifteen years of experience in the pension field and holds the designation of Enrolled Retirement Plan Agent (ERPA), which allows him to represent clients before the IRS. Paul interned for Playboy Enterprises as an internal auditor before graduating from DeVry with a B.S. in Accounting. Paul enjoys playing ice hockey, bike riding and watching professional sports in his free time.
Charlene Rabey has been with Karel-Gordon & Associates since 1989. Specializing in defined benefit plans, she provides excellent administrative services to all of our clients. She has had the unique opportunity of learning this business from the ground up and is well versed in all aspects of pension administration. She has a degree in business administration and lives in the northern suburbs with her twin girls and adorable puggle.
Stacy Reid joined Karel-Gordon & Associates in 2006; she has over ten years of experience in the pension industry. She specializes in the design of defined contribution plans to provide business owners with their desired level of retirement income. She also administers both defined contribution and defined benefit plans. Stacy graduated from DePaul University with a B.S in Finance. She lives in the northern suburbs with her husband and children where she enjoys spending time with her family, running, cooking and traveling.
Joseph Gurka joined Karel-Gordon & Associates as a plan administrator in 2011. He specializes in the administration of both defined contribution and defined benefit plans. Prior to joining the firm, Joe worked in the accounting department of a national hospitality company. He graduated from Northern Illinois University with a B.S. in Finance. Joe has his QKA designation and is working toward the QPA designation. Joseph enjoys running, working out, and watching professional sports in his free time. He lives in Chicago with his wife.
Kineisha Nash joined Karel-Gordon & Associates as a Plan Administrator in 2013. She specializes in the compliance and reconciliation administration for Defined Contribution Plans. Kineisha is a member of ASPPA and holds a credential as a Qualified 401(k) Administrator. She is also pursuing a second credential as a Qualified Pension Administrator. Kineisha attended Northern Illinois University and graduated from Taylor Business School. She enjoys traveling and spending time with family and friends.
Jean Paul Galvez joined Karel-Gordon & Associates as a plan administrator in 2012. He specializes in the administration of both defined contribution and defined benefit plans. He is currently pursuing a B.S. in Finance at Harper College and is working towards his QKA designation. JP enjoys hanging out with friends and family, working out and watching professional sports in his free time. He lives in Palatine with his fiance and dog.
Our Senior Staff is also supported by a talented group of individuals.
Included in this group are the following valuable team members:
Denise Gaulin, Office Manager/ Human Resource Coordinator
Augusta Lundsgaard, Administrative Coordinator
Joshua Roberts, Word Processor/Administration
John Plamoottil, Assistant Administrator