Cynthia Plawker

Advisor Headshot

I Partner with Families as Though I Were a Member

I have a true passion for people and creating personal relationships with my clients. I love being there for them and thoroughly understanding their aspirations and concerns. Together, we make well-informed decisions that speak to their circumstance.

What has inspired you to stay at Bernstein for as long as you have?

Celebrating my 30th anniversary at Bernstein was a major milestone and a testament to the firm’s incredible culture. When someone asks why I have been here so long, the answer is easy—I simply love what I do! Over the years, Bernstein has significantly expanded the depth and breadth of the investment services and advice they offer to meet the growing complexity of their clients and the capital markets. Regardless of the environment, one thing that has always been consistent is the firm’s solid ethical reputation. Every decision we make is based on what is best for our clients. I work alongside a team of very talented colleagues in our wealth management group. We work hard to support clients and address their latest financial challenge or dilemma. Clients truly benefit from our entire organization as we work in tandem to meet their needs.

What is the most fulfilling aspect of being an advisor to your clients?

I work with complex multigenerational families, including grandparents, parents, and their children. Understandably, each generation has different concerns and priorities. Their risk tolerance, spending needs, and investment experience vary significantly. While one generation is saving to purchase their first home, others are selling a business or building their net worth. For some, wealth transfer strategies are top of mind. I enjoy dealing with such a multifaceted dynamic. I guide each generation in a way that best addresses their individual circumstances while also keeping a clear picture of the overall family situation. 

Developing my client’s investment plan requires an ongoing dialogue that changes periodically. Attention to detail is so important to me, as is a personal touch. My clients feel comfortable calling me on a consistent basis. I love to go that extra mile and I feel honored when they include me as part of the family. I partner with them as if I was a part of theirs. 

What passions do you pursue outside of work?

Nothing gives me greater joy than spending time with my family. My husband and I are the proud parents of a daughter and son. Having arrived as 2 lb and 3 lb babies, both spent their first several months in a neonatal intensive care unit. They truly are miracles and my greatest inspiration. Witnessing the indefatigable work ethic and skillfulness of the physicians and nurses in that unit reinforced my commitment to philanthropy, particularly in regard to medical research. 

Another interest is martial arts. One of my children exhibited learning disabilities at a young age, which led us to enroll both of them in karate. Today, they are world-ranked martial artists and members of an international competition team based out of the South Bronx. That affiliation evolved into mentoring a group of underprivileged children who I now consider family. Some of them call me “Mom” and in that respect, I am a voice of reason who offers love, guidance, and support to help kids make better decisions.