Chad M. Smith CFP®

Managing Partner

Chad is a Certified Financial Planner™ and managing partner of Retirement Planning Specialists, Inc. His main focus is you, our client. With an attention to detail and a willingness to provide assistance, Chad reviews all areas of your financial plan.  Chad has over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry and he continues to educate himself in an effort to help serve you better.


Meet Chad and His Family

Chad was born and raised in the South Bay area of Southern California. Growing up, he was very active in sports and played football, golf, baseball and soccer for West High School in Torrance, where he met his wife, Jane. After earning a Bachelors degree in Communication Studies and a minor in Business Administration, they moved to Ashland Oregon, the perfect place to raise their two daughters, Kyra and Rylie. They have both decided to return to California to attend Cal Poly San Luis Obispo and University of San Diego.  When Chad is not at the office, he enjoys taking trips with his family, golfing, hiking, fishing and volunteering his time serving the local community through Kiwanis.

Chris Patterson

Managing Partner

Chris is a managing partner at Retirement Planning Specialists, a comprehensive financial services firm serving the specialized needs of retirees and pre-retirees. Chris is currently working though the Chartered Financial Consultant course for ongoing education. Since 2008, Chris has strived to provide his clients exceptional customer service and gives unbiased advice to truly help retirees and pre-retirees live a financially confident retirement. His comprehensive approach integrates investment management, income and estate tax reduction strategies, and insurance and estate planning.


Meet Chris and His Family

Chris grew up in the Sacramento, California area and is an Honorably Discharged  Veteran of the US Air Force and Army National Guard.  Chris and his wife, Heidi, were married in March of 2000. They have a large blended family, with four adult children, two teenagers still at home and three granddaughters. Chris lives on a 20 Acre farm in Talent where they raise cattle, goats and chickens for a sustainable lifestyle. Chris enjoys most outdoor activities but loves golf most of all.

Heather Thurgood

Director of Operations & Trading

Heather has been with RPS since April of 2008 and is the client’s first contact at our office. With a strong background in customer service and sales, she is the point person for all new clients and handles account inquiries for current clients.  As the Director of Operations & Trading, Heather is responsible for opening new accounts, client requests, account maintenance, transfers, distributions/contributions, and trades. She also prepares client reports, maintains client files and ensures that both Chad and Chris are organized and efficient.


Meet Heather and her family

Heather was born and raised here in Southern Oregon. She attended University of Oregon, where she studied business. Heather enjoys spending time with her husband David and two little girls, Makayla and Peyton. Most of her weekends are spent either at the soccer field cheering on her oldest daughter, or at the dance studio with her youngest.

Dana McLean

Office Manager

Dana has been with Retirement Planning Specialists, since January 2007.  Her background has been in the travel industry and management.  Dana operates as the office manager, and handles bookkeeping, technology, special client events, handling all vendor relationships and contracts, as well as scheduling client reviews. 


Meet Dana and her family

Dana is an Oregon native and has lived in the Rogue Valley since 1980. She is married to her husband, Bruce, also an Oregon native with roots in Ashland and they have one daughter, Keely.  Dana and her family enjoy traveling together, always seeking a new adventure wherever they go.  In Dana's personal time, she enjoys long hikes on the trails around Ashland and having a nice local glass of wine with friends at one of the local wineries.  

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