Olga Starr Finalist in 2015 Progressive Woman Award

Congratulations to Olga Starr, Financial Planner in Skylight Financial Group’s Columbus office, finalist in the Progressive Woman category of the 2015 Smart Women Awards which took place on October 2 in the Hilton Columbus.  The prestigious award recognizes female executives or managers who have risen through the ranks in their careers and overcome significant challenges along the way.

Olga’s story is a compelling one.  Growing up in the former Soviet Union, Olga experienced economic collapse, political turmoil and poverty first-hand.  In the late 90s as persecution worsened, Olga aged 21 and fearing for her life, made the trip to the US on her own where she requested asylum.  As in many immigrant’s life stories, she had to start from the bottom. Working 2 full-time jobs was a norm.  Every free minute she had Olga was studying English and as her language skills improved she gained a job as a bank teller in 2002.  Her banking career took off and in the next three years she was promoted to a personal banker and obtained her investment and insurance licenses. In addition to working full-time, Olga graduated with distinction with an MBA focusing in Finance and a graduate certificate in Financial Analysis.

After a decade of a successful banking career, where Olga was continually one of the top performers, the decision to start her own financial planning practice seemed to her a natural progression. So in early 2013, she joined Skylight with a goal of serving the underserved.  At Skylight, she quickly excelled and picked up Skylight’s 2014 New Associate of the Year award.  Throughout her career, she has given in abundance to her community through teaching foundations of banking and financial education in halfway houses and community centers in low-to-moderate income areas.  Her business planning seminars for small company owners and collaboration with Increase CDC and ECDI have won Olga a MicroEntrepreneur of the Year award in the Business-to-Business category in 2015.

On receiving the award Olga said, “I am truly honored to be a finalist and to be recognized alongside other leading businesswomen who have achieved so much.  Thanks to everyone who has supported me in my career and helped in my development.”

Rob Fichter, Senior Partner at Skylight, who nominated Olga, said, “Many congratulations to Olga whose amazing determination and perseverance never wavers.  This has enabled her to overcome many significant challenges in her life and carve out an outstanding career for herself.  She always gives 110% of herself and is such a role model to aspiring businessmen and women.”

Olga Starr is a registered representative of and offers securities, investment advisory and financial planning services through MML Investors Services, LLC.Member SIPC OSJ: 2012 W. 25th Street, Ste. 900, Cleveland, OH 44113 216.621.5680