303-PLANNER | 303-752-6637

855-PLANNER | 855-752-6637

You Can Avoid Millionaire Retirement Pitfalls and Boost Your Personal Planning

Retirement concerns shouldn't keep you up at night thinking about ruinous taxation, threatening market crashes, crippling healthcare costs, or complicated estate concerns.

If this is the case, you could be a victim of Fishbowl Finances™.

We will show you how to save your retirement from Fishbowl Finances™.  Start with our Complimentary Training Video.

Latest Podcasts & Videos

When The Paychecks Stop™ is our signature radio show and podcast where we talk about all things related to retirement planning.

Finance Bites™ are short, topical videos curated from our full length episodes. These Finance Bites™ are perfect for learning about specific topics and questions, and they are just the right length to share with your friends!

We have special guests from all different backgrounds to talk about every retirement planning topic. Check out our latest videos in our education center.

Paychecks and Bites Wally Photo
Retirement Flight Plan

Purpose. Planning. Portfolio.®

Address all 5 areas of your retirement in order to create your personal Balanced Retirement Ecosystem™

Ridgegate Financial proudly supports Hillsdale College!

Ask us about the Hillsdale College President's Club at your next visit.


Wallace Smith, ChFC™

Founding Principal, Financial Planner

Wallace Smith is the founding principal of Ridgegate Financial. He started the company after the dot-com market crash with the goal of serving the unique needs of the retirement community.

Wally is a Chartered Financial Consultant® (ChFC). Through that designation, he has completed advanced training in financial planning, insurance planning, retirement planning, income taxation, investments, and estate planning. Wally is licensed to work with both securities and life insurance products.

Outside of the office, Wally enjoys hiking in the outdoors, flying, spending time with his family.

Wally and Lynn, his wife of 28 years, have three children and a 6-pound Yorkie named Lanie. Wally is a private pilot and is active in his Church.

Coleman Benson

Financial Planner

Prior to joining Ridgegate Financial as a Financial Planner, Coleman Benson earned his BA in Personal Finance from Colorado State University in May of 2016. Coleman recently passed his insurance and securities examinations as well as the venerated CFP examination.

After college, Coleman had applied to St. John Vianney Theological Seminary to study for the priesthood. While in the process of the application, Coleman discerned another life path, and chose instead to pursue a career in Finance. Coleman is a devout Catholic, and personal interests include a passion for the outdoors, winter sports, and the art of brewing beer.

Chris Rogers

Financial Planner

Chris Rogers has more than 20 years of experience in the financial industry.  He started his career with First Trust in Denver, Co.  From there he moved on to serve in a variety of capacities with other companies in such roles as a Financial Advisor and wholesaling financial products.

Chris plays an important role in the team’s client relationship efforts, including coordinating with internal and external partners on behalf of clients.  He also contributes to the custom financial plans Ridgegate develops for its clients.  Chris has a BS in Marketing from Metropolitan State College of Denver, which has laid the groundwork for his successful career.

Away from work, he enjoys staying active in the gym and spending time in the great outdoors.   He also loves spending time with his wife and four children and is an active member of his local church.

Anita Blackman

Client Relationship Manager

Anita Blackman serves an important role as a client relationship manager with Ridgegate Financial. The experience she brings includes years of application preparation and accounts information.

Anita is an active member of her church and also enjoys singing and spending time with her husband, Bob.

Geordy Smith, MBA

Director of Marketing

Prior to joining Ridgegate Financial as an Associate Planner, Geordy Smith earned his BA in Marketing and Management from Hillsdale College. He then continued his education with an MBA in Strategic Management from Regis University. After this time, he took over the role of Marketing Director for Ridgegate Financial. Geordy is insurance licensed and is working toward his securities licenses. His duties also include supporting compliance work and systems design at the firm.

After high school, Geordy was drafted in the 2012 MLB draft by the Philadelphia Phillies. He chose to pursue his college studies while playing four years of college baseball. Personal interests include an active role with his Church, a passion for the outdoors, physical activity and training, and foreign languages.

Joe Merrell, CPA

Joe Merrell graduated from Brigham Young University in 1994 with a Master’s Degree in Tax Accounting.  His first job was working for an Insurance Company where he eventually was promoted to CFO.  In 1999 he sat for the CPA exam and passed all four sections.

In 2000, Joe had the opportunity to go into business with his in-laws.  They built three collision repair facilities in Utah.  During this time, Joe was in charge of the business end of the Company and facilitated the rapid growth in the business.  In 2004, he decided to move back to Colorado, so he sold my ownership in the family business and moved back to Colorado.

Joe used the money from the sale of his interest in the family business and purchased an accounting and tax business.  In addition to the tax and accounting services they provided, he added audit services for government entities.

Joe came onboard with Ridgegate Financial when he moved offices in the late Summer of 2018. This began a wonderful opportunity for collaboration on many tax-heavy cases.

When Joe is not working, he lives the Colorado lifestyle.  Cycling, hiking camping, and skiing are his passions.  Joe rides in several of the organized long cycling events each year.

Joe's three children live in Utah.  His son works in the corporate office for Tesla. His oldest daughter is finishing her degree in computer programing, and his youngest daughter is a cosmetologist.

Joe's business moto is: “Striving for Excellence Every Day with Every Customer”.  That is still the way he handles each day and each opportunity.

Our Offices

Greenwood Village

Headquarters Office

Colorado Springs - North

By Appointment Only

Colorado Springs - Downtown

By Appointment Only