I am an entrepreneur, a businesswoman, a motivator and I am passionate about helping individuals and families take control of their financial well-being. I focus particularly on helping my clients navigate the investment world. My name is Carolyn Costigan and I am a Portfolio Manager and Investment Advisor at RBC Dominion Securities.
I believe there are many attributes to being a successful investor, including diversification by asset class and diversification geographically. I believe active management will provide higher returns than passive investing, but most importantly I have learned that a disciplined and long-term approach is necessary to achieve financial goals.
Prior to joining RBC Dominion Securities I co-founded an independent investment research firm where I worked as an equity analyst focusing on North American mid and small cap equities. I looked specifically for companies with strong balance sheets, strong operating cash flow, and strong corporate governance, companies that are making a positive impact on the lives of their customers and that are environmentally sensitive.
From my childhood, dinner table talk among my parents and their friends was about financial markets, as my father worked in the industry.
When I was 14 I set out to achieve a black belt in Tae Kwon Do. I achieved my goal in five years. As any passionate martial artist will tell you, the discipline and the attention to detail learned in the dojo are applicable to every aspect of life. I believe that the real-life application of discipline and attention to detail that helped me achieve my black belt has stayed with me and has had a positive impact on my every subsequent endeavor.
In 2009 I started my first business as a public thoroughbred racehorse trainer at Woodbine Racetrack, I was 28 years old. I employed a team of 14 people and competed in Ontario, New York, Kentucky and California and in Europe. I represented Canada at the World Championships held in the United States. I was the first woman, and the youngest trainer, to win the Canadian Classic Woodbine Oaks, the most important race for fillies in Canada.
Losing my mother to pancreatic cancer in 2014, when she was only 54, readjusted my priorities. This experience made me think about what is important to me in life and helped me to realize that in my career I wanted to do something that had a profound, positive impact on the lives of others.
My position as Portfolio Manager and Investment Advisor with RBC DS allows me to act on this: I am passionate about making a positive difference in the lives of my clients. I leverage the resources of RBC and apply my skills of discipline and attention to detail to create and implement long-term investment portfolios and financial plans for my clients. My experience as an equity analyst has shown me the importance of independent investment research which is an integral part of my development of bespoke portfolios for my clients.
My partner and I love to hike, camp and spend time in the great outdoors around Vancouver. We always carry a map and a compass with us. Having a planned route and keeping an eye on the compass to know if the path is correct is imperative on some of the West Coast trails. I believe that "North" is also applicable in wealth planning. Knowing your "North," knowing what is important to you and why you make the decisions you make, is crucial. What is your North? And do you have a planned route to get where you want to be?