Raymond James hires father-son municipal bond bankers in Kansas City

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Raymond James is bulking up its Kansas City, Missouri, office with the hiring of veteran education banker Richard G. Bartow and his son Richard T. Bartow.

The elder Bartow, who goes by Dick, joined the firm as a managing director while his son, who goes by Rich, holds the title of vice president. The two, who had not worked together before, started Monday.

They join Greg Vahrenberg, a managing director, who opened the Kansas City office in late 2018.

Gavin Murrey, Raymond James' head of public finance/debt investment banking, hailed the experience of new bankers Dick and Rich Bartow.

The new hires will work on kindergarten through 12th grade school district deals in Missouri and Kansas while also supporting the general governmental practice, the firm said in a statement.

“Dick is a highly regarded banker with deep roots throughout Missouri and a decades-long track record of providing uncompromised client service and financial leadership to school districts and local government issuers,” Gavin Murrey head of public finance/debt investment banking for the St. Petersburg, Florida-based firm, said in the statement.

“With nearly 45 years of combined experience in the financial services industry, Dick and Rich’s expertise and understanding of the Missouri education landscape is valued by clients and further strengthens our respected education practice,” Murrey added.

Dick Bartow previously worked at George K. Baum & Co., where he specialized in school bond transactions. Baum was acquired last summer by Stifel, which led to a shake-up in banking staff with some professionals retiring or departing and others joining with the Stifel team.

Rich Bartow has 15 years of experience in the financial services industry and most recently worked as an advisor to individual investors. He also serves on the park board for the city of Raymore, Missouri, and as a board member for the Raymore-Peculiar Public Schools Foundation.

“My son and I are excited to work with Raymond James’ team of experienced investment bankers and underwriters to build the ‘go-to’ education finance practice in the Midwest,” the elder Bartow said in the statement.

The hires mark the latest in a series of additions and new offices Raymond James opened in various Midwest states over the last two years. In addition to Vahrenberg, who started in late 2018, the firm last fall moved into Indiana with new offices in Indianapolis and Crown Point staffed by Damian Maggos and Matthrew Ruess, respectively.

The firm expanded in Michigan with the opening of an office in Traverse City and hiring of Paul Soma, the recently retired superintendent of Traverse City Area Public Schools. The firm added education banker Elizabeth Hennessy in Chicago in 2017.

The firm remains on the hunt to hire “additional talented bankers to continue expanding the practice,” the statement said.

Raymond James ranked 10th last year among underwriters leading $14.36 billion of deals. It did not rank in the top 10 in the Midwest, according to data from Refinitiv. The firm reported being the third-leading underwriter nationally of primary and secondary school transactions last year based on par amount.

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