SEM Team

Donald R. Jowdy
Founder and Chief Investment Officer

Prior to founding Suncoast Equity Management, LLC in 1997, Donald Jowdy was a Portfolio Manager with Polen Capital Management. During his tenure, Polen Capital consistently performed in the top 10% of its peer group for three, five and ten year periods, as measured by several industry consultants including Effron/PSN and Nelson’s Investment Manager Database. Mr. Jowdy played a key role in the company’s growth from $20 million in assets to approximately $250 million. Don then served in an advisory capacity to Polen Capital Management during its growth to over $1 billion in client assets. Previously, Mr. Jowdy was an equity analyst with 13D Research, Inc., advising institutional clients through an independent investment research organization. He provided an in-depth analysis of domestic as well as global investment opportunities in areas such as Latin America, Southeast Asia and the People’s Republic of China. Mr. Jowdy was also a Senior Associate with Price Waterhouse Coopers (formerly Coopers & Lybrand).

Mr. Jowdy is a graduate of Indiana University with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting. He is on the board of Quantum Leap Farm, a nonprofit Therapeutic & Recreational Horseback Riding Program Serving Veterans, Civilian Adults, and Kids. www.quantumleapfarm.org

Amy A. Lord, CFA
Senior Vice President/Co-Portfolio Manager

Amy Lord joined Suncoast Equity Management “SEM” in September 2008. She was previously Vice President/Portfolio Manager with Intrepid Capital where she was sole manager of the company’s Large Cap Equity and Investment Grade Fixed Income portfolios. Prior to joining Intrepid in 2001, Ms. Lord was Managing Director, Senior Portfolio Manager of The Investment Counsel Company. During her nine years with the firm, her responsibilities included equity and fixed income portfolio management and analysis; marketing and client servicing; and overseeing GIPS performance compliance.

Ms. Lord earned a Bachelor of Science in Advertising, with a minor in Mathematics, from the University of Florida. She is a CFA charterholder and past President of the CFA Society of Orlando, as well as a member of the CFA Institute. Ms. Lord is also active in her church as well as Circles USA, a non-profit organization which inspires and equips individuals and families to permanently move out of poverty and thrive.

Cheeroke Townsend
Research Analyst

Cheeroke Townsend is a graduate from the University of South Florida, with a bachelor’s degree in Finance. She is involved with the Women in Leadership & Philanthropy program at USF. Prior to joining SEM, Ms. Townsend completed a summer internship at Franklin Templeton Investments. She is also a candidate in the CFA program.

Al Dopking
Fixed Income Specialist

Al Dopking is a graduate of St Louis University with a degree in Finance. He played baseball in college and actively supports their program. He joined the Air Force Reserves after college. He served in a Rapid Runway Repair unit from ’79 to ’94.

Al Dopking is presently a portfolio manager for Suncoast Fixed Income Management. His primary focus is trading Municipal securities.

Al Dopking was previously the Manager of Citi’s Southeast Municipal Trading and Underwriting Desk. He was responsible for all risk in secondary Southeast trading and was involved in pricing for Citi’s Southeast Municipal financings. Al was with Citi for 30 years.Prior to Citi, he traded Municipals at The Ohio Company in Columbus, Ohio and Carolina Securities in Raleigh, N.C.

Al Dopking resides in Odessa, Florida with his wife Edie, President of Quantum Leap Farm, an Adult Horseback Riding Therapy Program. His hobbies include golf and watching sporting events.

Daniel T. McNichol
President

Dan McNichol joined Suncoast Equity Management LLC in 2020.  He has over 30 years of executive experience in the investment management industry.

Prior to joining SEM, he was an equity partner and Managing Director at Snow Capital Management LP for 19 years.  At its peak Snow managed in excess of $7 billion for institutional clients in the Wealth Management, Banking, Insurance, Pension, Endowment and Foundation marketplaces.  Dan was responsible for sourcing and maintaining much of that business.  Most recently he served as the firm’s National Sales Manager.  In this capacity he handled the firm’s institutional wealth management relationships with companies such as Morgan Stanley, UBS, Merrill Lynch, Raymond James, Janney Montgomery Scott, Royal Bank of Canada, Citibank, PNC Bank and New York Life, among others.  He also managed the firm’s institutional sales team.

Dan is a 1986 graduate of Fairfield University and holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the School of Business.

Cole M. Wasson, CFA, MSF Institutional Relationship Manager

Cole Wasson is a former 2020 valedictorian graduate from the University of Tampa upon earning a Masters in Finance (MSF). He was the valedictorian in both his graduate and undergraduate class, twice receiving summa cum laude honors with a cumulative GPA of 4.0. His demanding high school schedule allowed him to skip his freshman year at the University of Tampa and enroll as a sophomore at 18 years of age in 2016. Cole has earned his MSF in the AACSB accredited Sykes College of Business. As opposed to the typical 2-year program, he received his MSF in 1.5 years, graduating with an undergraduate and graduate degree in December of 2020. Throughout his education, he was the recipient of the Delta Sigma Pi Scholarship Award for graduating with the highest GPA in the Sykes College of Business. He is a former Vice President for the Florida Zeta chapter of the Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity. Cole intends on using his Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation to broaden Suncoast Equity Management’s institutional relationships. He consecutively passed the CFA Level 1 (August 2021) Exam, CFA Level 2 (February 2022) Exam, and recently passed the CFA Level 3 Exam (August 2022) all on the first attempt. As of November 2. 2022, Cole earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation, and is an active member of the CFA® Tampa Bay Society.

Jeff Strouse, JD, CRPC®, CEPA®
Head of Wealth Management Division

Current Role and Areas of Expertise:
Jeff has responsibility of overseeing SEM’s wealth management practice. In this capacity, Jeff is responsible for providing high net worth clients with unbiased, product neutral, advanced planning strategies, design, and implementation while working hand in hand with the firms’ financial advisors and portfolio management team. As an advanced financial planner, he can provide expertise in the following areas:
– Estate and Multi-Generational Planning
– Retirement Income and Cash Flow Analysis
– Business Continuity and Succession Planning
– Retirement Plans and Employee Benefits
– Risk and Liability Management Planning
– Charitable Giving Strategies
– Executive Compensation and Benefit Strategies

Professional History:
Jeff has over 30 years of experience in financial, tax and legal services. In addition to his role with SEM, Jeff has experience in public accounting and trust and estate law. He attained a post-doctoral fellowship in wealth strategies and has been a contributing author to two estate planning books. With degrees in both law and accounting, Jeff brings insight to the many aspects of financial planning. Prior to joining SEM, Jeff held various divisional leadership roles as an executive director at UBS, overseeing various product and service consulting areas as well as a divisional wealth planning strategist in the Southeast US. Jeff was also a Planning Director for MS Smith Barney, a Trust and Estates and Business Attorney and worked in the Tax Division of Ernst and Young CPAs.

Education and Personal Information:
Jeff has a Bachelor of Accountancy degree from the University of Mississippi “Ole Miss” and a law degree from Capital University. He holds several designations and securities licenses and is Life and Health Insurance licensed. Jeff is also a Chartered Retirement Planning Counselor (CRPC) and a Certified Exit Planning Advisor (CEPA). Jeff and his wife live in Tampa, Florida with their children and grandchildren. Jeff enjoys golf, music, college sports and being a “foodie.”

Beth Dopking Neal
Executive Vice President – Tampa Market

Beth joined Suncoast Equity Management (“SEM”) in February 2016. In 2005, she began her career in the financial industry. She spent her first year as an Intern at Peraza Capital, LLC. She spent the next 10 years working at Smith Barney/Morgan Stanley. Her roles as a Client Service Associate and Financial Advisor gave her a broad base of knowledge and experience working with high-net-worth individuals and institutions. She and her two partners managed approximately $250 million in assets.

Beth is a graduate from the University of Tampa with a B.S. in Marketing. Beth is a member of the Junior League of Clearwater-Dunedin and enjoys volunteering for Quantum Leap Farm, a nonprofit Therapeutic & Recreational Horseback Riding Program Serving Veterans, Civilian Adults, and Kids. www.quantumleapfarm.org

Terri Ritchie
Executive Vice President – Tampa Market

Terri Ritchie joined Suncoast Equity Management (SEM) in August 2019. Terri has more than 16 years experience in the financial services industry, both in client-facing roles, as well as management. She most recently joins us from Morgan Stanley where she was a Vice President/Complex Business Service Officer and managed the operations department for Morgan Stanley’s Virtual Advisor platform. She also spent 6 years at Wells Fargo Advisors where she worked as a Client Service Associate. Terri worked closely with clients and adopted a holistic approach to investing.
Terri graduated, with honors, from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Marketing. Terri currently holds her Series 65 license. She is also a Notary Public.

Robin L. Cook
Executive Vice President – Sanibel-Captiva Market

Robin joined Suncoast Equity Management in 2022. She has a long-standing career in the financial services arena with over 30 years of well-rounded experience. Robin specializes in providing comprehensive wealth management services and developing deeply personal client relationships helping high net worth individuals, families, foundations and nonprofits preserve and grow their wealth. Prior to joining SEM Robin served for 8 years as Executive Vice President of Wealth Services at The Sanibel Captiva Trust Company, as a Certified Wealth Strategist at Regions Bank and as a Private Banker at Fifth Third Bank. In these roles Robin established herself as a top performer both in new business development, and client retention which resulted in being recognized multiple years as a “Chairman’s Club” award recipient.

Robin is a resident of Sanibel Island and enjoys being involved in the community. She is a member of Sanibel Captiva Business Women’s Association, Sanibel Captiva Rotary and volunteers for SanCap Cares Golisano Children’s Hospital Fundraising Committee and the Sanibel Captiva Conservation Foundation. Robin has served on boards for the Captiva Historical Society, Gulf Care Inc. retirement community, and The Cape Coral Community Foundation. Robin was recognized as the American Business Women’s Association “Sanibel Captiva American Business Woman of the Year” in 2013 and is a graduate of the “Leadership Cape Coral” program.

Robin has continuously sought out educational opportunities to better serve her clients. Robin completed the ABA’s Graduate School of Banking program the University of Florida in 1999, followed by earning the CERTIFIED WEALTH STRATEGIST™ (CWS®) certification in 2013, and the CERTIFIED TRUST FIDUCIARY ADVISOR™ (CTFA®) certification in 2022. Robin previously held a Florida Insurance license, the General Securities Representative (Series 7) license, and the Uniform Securities Agent (Series 63) license.

Katie Pemble, CFP®
Senior Relationship Manager

Katie joined Suncoast Equity Management in March 2016. She has a longstanding career in financial services providing business and individual clients advice on crucial decisions. Prior to joining SEM, Katie was President and Vice-chair of the board of C1 Financial, Inc and previously President and board member of Florida Bank Group. She twice led these banking organizations to be among the highest-growth banking companies in Florida and completed two successful initial public stock offerings. Prior to these entrepreneurial ventures, she enjoyed a tenured commercial banking career with Bank of America as the Pinellas County market president.

Katie’s broad financial acumen, 30 years experience and her genuine interest in her clients enable her to chart a financial path towards wealth creation and protection for our clients. Katie is the president and founder of Baldwin Pemble Advisors, Inc. and she serves on the board of Axiom Bank in Maitland, Florida. She has been actively involved in the community with countless organizations since moving to Tampa Bay in 1987. She was recently chairman of the American Heart Association Tampa Bay Metro Board and remains a board member. She founded Go Red For Women in Tampa Bay dedicated to reducing deaths among women due to heart disease. She served on the board and as finance committee chair for Bayfront Health Systems, Inc. for eight years and was a founding director serving as inaugural vice-chair of the Foundation for Healthy St. Pete. She currently serves on the board and is finance chair of SPCA of Tampa Bay and is a member of the Investment Oversight Committee for the City of St. Petersburg.

Katie graduated from the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science in Finance. She holds a Series 65 license, is a Florida realtor proficient in commercial real estate, is a certified risk professional and earned her Certified Financial Planner® designation in 2017.

Stacey Blair
Client Service Associate

Stacey joined Suncoast Equity Management (SEM) as a Client Service Associate in April 2022. Prior to joining SEM she spent 5 years working at Morgan Stanley. Her years in the financial service industry comprised of roles in Operations, Client Services, and Client Resolutions.

Elliott Sharp
Chief Operating Officer/Chief Compliance Officer

Elliott joined Suncoast Equity Management (“SEM”) in March 2014. He is responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the firm. He also assesses and oversees the research, planning, and implementation of the firm’s critical systems.

Prior to joining SEM, Elliott began his finance career in 2008 at Private Capital Management; a registered investment advisor located in Naples, FL.

Before he began his career in finance, Elliott graduated magna cum laude from Florida Gulf Coast University in 2007 with a B.S. in Finance and a minor in Economics. Elliott currently holds his Series 65 license.

Nick Base
Director of Operations

Nick joined Suncoast Equity Management (SEM) in the Operations and Client Services department in January 2019.  Prior to joining SEM, he began his professional career in commercial real estate at SkyView Advisors where he served as a Research Analyst.  He is a graduate from the University of South Florida where he earned his Bachelor of Science in Finance. In his free time, he enjoys playing soccer, tennis, and golf.

Zane Walsh
Operations/Trading Associate

Zane joined the Operations/Trading/Client Services department at Suncoast Equity Management (SEM) in October 2021. He is a graduate from the University of South Florida where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Analytics and Information Systems. Prior to joining SEM, he began his professional career as a Sales Advisor working in the automotive industry.