News From Terre Haute, Indiana


April 4, 2013

ISU grad and one of ‘America’s Top 1,000 Financial Advisors’ offers insight at ethics conference

TERRE HAUTE — Being a graduate of a non-Ivy League school, a young Joe Evelo was worried about competing in a financial workforce full of smart, well-educated people who did not attend his alma mater, Indiana State University.

But through the years, Evelo said he realized that the essence of success is being honest and fair, and doing what is right — rather than what is easy. And his education at ISU prepared him for that.

Evelo spoke about “Ethics and Integrity in the Real World” on Wednesday during the 8th annual Ethics and Corporate Responsibility Conference at ISU.

The native Terre Hautean is now the founder and senior investment strategist for the Evelo/Singer Group, and was recently named as the Top Advisor in Ohio on financial magazine Barron’s “America’s Top 1,000 Financial Advisors.” He has also been recognized as one of the top 100 wealth advisors nationally since 2000 by Barron’s Winners Circle.

Speaking to a student audience, many from the Scott College of Business, Evelo said he was asked to speak about Wall Street’s economic troubles in 2008 and 2009 at the conference. While many people want to find someone or some firm to blame for the financial crisis, he said, an overall negligence in how Americans conducted their financial business contributed most to the hard times.

“I think it was more of a systemic thing,” Evelo said. “I think more people were culpable than just the titans of Wall Street, and we all pay for that.”

Investors were taking too many risks. Clients were being talked into too many risks, and many were allowing their incomes to be manipulated, he said. Lenders were approving home mortgages to people who did not have the finances to pay their bills. And even real estate agents were sometimes too eager to make a sale without seeing the financial consequences down the road.

It all boils down to telling the truth, Evelo said.

“It’s easy to be ethical and honest if you tell the truth,” he said. Though it may be harder to do what’s right, rather than sell what is easy.

When a client wants to make an investment that looks good on the surface, Evelo said he has had some tough times trying to convince people that the future of that investment is a bust.

He recalled that one couple advised by his firm was spending too much of their investment proceeds rather than saving for the future, and he told the couple that. When the economic downturn came, they found that they really had been spending too much, and now in their retirement, they do not have enough money to get by.

Too many financial advisers will bend to their investors’ will, and make a commission on the investors’ money, rather than pointing out that a financial bubble cannot last forever, he said.

The principal of Reversion to the Mean — or averaging out over time — holds true in the financial world, as evidenced when the stock market bubble burst. When the stock market was making 20 percent gains, but technology was making 40 percent gains, many people invested too heavily in technology, and were then hurt financially when the technology market stalled and returned to the “mean.”

Evelo said his firm took most of their investments out of technology and put it into investments that were staying steady. That was a hard sell to clients, he said, but in the end it was beneficial and reduced losses when the bubble burst.

“The lesson in the story,” he said, “is you are going to be presented with things that are easy to sell but not right. I think your clients are going to expect you to inform them of what is the right thing.”

Another thing that happens in his business is intimidation, he said. When he was younger, the Schulte High School graduate admits that he was easily intimidated by slicker, well-educated co-workers.

But he recalled his experience with a client who was wanting to invest in a promising barge business, which was all the rage at the time with young hot-shot brokers. Evelo said he talked with an actual barge owner, who projected that a bust in the industry was coming. In two years, there was a downturn in the barge business, and many people lost their investment. But Evelo had talked his client out of the investment, though it wasn’t easy.

The firm he worked for was sued over those barge deals and had to pay for it, Evelo said, and that was when he realized that if he did his homework on investments, he was as smart as the next guy.

Evelo said he breaks people down into thirds. One third will work smart. Another third will work hard. And another third have integrity and positive attitudes. He likes to hire people with all three characteristics to work in his firm now, he said, and that pays off.

“Our minimum level of acceptance is above-average. Our minimum is hard work, and our minimum is good attitude,” he said. He cautioned the students that they will see a lot of negativity in the world, but keeping a focus on people who are positive has helped his business succeed.

“What I did was found people who were positive, who had a good track record,” he said. “Negative people always forget the enthusiasm of the American spirit. If gas prices are high, they will find an alternative. If gas prices drop, people buy gas. People adapt. Negatives don’t predict the Internet, or anything. Everything is in stasis for them.”

He encouraged the students to find positive influences, people who are upbeat and have a positive spin on the world, since they are more likely to get positive results.

He also encouraged the students to put a lot of time into philanthropy, since that will make them better people.

Reporter Lisa Trigg can be reached at 812-231-4254 or Follow her on Twitter @TribStarLisa.


Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • council mtg 013.JPG Mayor: City will not file bankruptcy

    The Terre Haute City Council took well more than  an hour to ask questions and discuss the health of the city’s finances with top city officials in a special meeting Thursday night. A few councilmen expressed grave concern about the financial picture, while Mayor Duke Bennett said things were improving.

    July 10, 2014 2 Photos 1 Story

  • State official threatens prosecution of city leaders who talk about audit

    A state official has threatened to pursue the prosecution of city officials if they violate a confidentiality agreement signed last month.

    July 10, 2014

  • MET 071014 181 02EXPO.jpg ISU, 181st Intelligence Wing show off capabilities at expo

    Communication and getting unmanned eyes in the sky can be vital parts of responding to a natural or man-made disaster.

    July 10, 2014 3 Photos

  • Feds relent: Military to restore equipment program for fire departments

    An agreement has been reached to keep surplus military equipment rolling into rural fire department bays in Indiana and 47 other states.

    July 10, 2014

  • united way.jpg UW kicks off pilot campaign

    Dottie King remembers the day she saw a young man leaving St. Ann’s Dental Clinic after having 17 teeth pulled. He had not received sufficient dental care before that day so his need was dramatic. That was unlike King, who had visited the dentist regularly since childhood, but still found getting a tooth filled not on her list of fun things to do. “I thought to myself, ‘I never have thought about the blessing of dental care,’” King recalled, sharing that story on Thursday morning with other volunteers for the United Way of the Wabash Valley.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • MET 071014 181 HILL.jpg Indiana’s director of homeland security sees unmanned systems’ potential

    Integrating unmanned flight systems into use for domestic surveillance can provide first responders with key information in responding to fires, earthquakes and man-made disasters, said John Hill, director of the Indiana Department of Homeland Security.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo

  • Stunt performer scheduled to be at Wigwam

    A celebrity stunt man named Jim “Crash” Moreau is scheduled to perform at Terre Haute’s Wigwam Skate and Event Center on Saturday.

    July 10, 2014

  • Rain barrels offered for sale

    The Vigo County Soil and Water Conservation District is taking orders for 55-gallon rain barrels.

    July 10, 2014

  • Ash.jpg Tips lead to meth lab bust

    Two people were arrested after police busted a clandestine methamphetamine lab Thursday in the 2200 block of Fourth Avenue in Terre Haute.

    July 10, 2014 2 Photos

  • MET070914 house exterior.jpg Historic Ohio Boulevard house inspired by 1948 Cary Grant movie

    Spurred in 1948 by a newly released movie staring Cary Grant and Myrna Loy, coupled with a growing post-World War II housing market, General Electric partnered with Hollywood’s RKO Studios to build “dream homes” throughout the country.

    July 9, 2014 4 Photos 1 Story

  • Detour ahead

    A panel of public and private officials is calling for $10 billion in projects to upgrade Indiana’s aging roads and bridges, but its members concede there’s no money to pay for it all.

    July 9, 2014

  • MET070814 barrels.jpg MARK BENNETT: Making road work a barrel of fun for drivers

    We’re lucky orange barrels can’t talk.

    July 9, 2014 2 Photos

  • City Council to take up city finances tonight

    The Terre Haute City Council will have a chance in a special meeting tonight to delve deeply into the city’s financial health. However, council members are being asked to avoid raising the most controversial subject of recent weeks: The city’s use of Redevelopment Commission tax increment finance (TIF) money.

    July 9, 2014

  • Bennett accepts $5,000 fine in ethics settlement

    Former Indiana Schools Superintendent Tony Bennett has agreed to pay $5,000 as part of a settlement with Indiana’s ethics watchdog in which he admits to using state resources for campaign work but is cleared of formal ethics violations in the grade-change scandal that cost him his job as Florida’s schools chief last year.

    July 9, 2014

  • Vermillion Jail trusties face new charges

    Two former inmate trusties at the Vermillion County Jail face new criminal charges after a recently discovered security breach at the jail.

    July 9, 2014

  • Lawrence police acquire armored military vehicle

    A central Indiana city has acquired an armored military vehicle for use in highly dangerous situations.

    July 9, 2014

  • Free carwash for law enforcement

    Mike’s Carwash locations in Central Indiana, including Terre Haute, will honor the sacrifice of IMPD Officer Perry Renn and thank all those who serve and protect our communities with a free carwash for police and emergency personnel today and Friday.

    July 9, 2014

  • MET070814 voice four.jpg Hitting a high note

    A 17-year-old from Casey, Ill., won “The Voice of the Valley” Tuesday night, singing and shaking his hips and legs to an Elvis Presley song, then wooing the grandstand audience at the Wabash Valley Fairgrounds with a country tune.

    July 9, 2014 2 Photos

  • MET 070814 STORM STAUNTON.jpg Clay County residents clean up debris, get power back

    Several power outages still affected hundreds of Duke Energy customers on Tuesday, more than 24 hours after storms and strong winds swept through west-central Indiana, leaving a swath of damage in the Staunton, Brazil and Center Point areas.

    July 9, 2014 4 Photos

  • MET 052106 EVANBAYH ADDRESS.jpg Return to Indiana?

    Evan Bayh is keeping Indiana Democrats on hold.

    July 9, 2014 1 Photo

  • Planning under way for 2014 Downtown Block Party

    Wabash Avenue will be full of activity Aug. 23 as the 2014 Downtown Terre Haute Block Party takes over five city blocks in a celebration of music, food and events.

    July 8, 2014

  • MET 070814 CATHOLIC WARE.jpg VIDEO UPDATE: Guys give food bank a lift

    A $14,000 donation Tuesday from Guys Who Give enables Catholic Charities to be at nearly 75 percent of its $2.5 million goal to purchase and operate a new, larger food bank near Terre Haute International Airport-Hulman Field.

    July 8, 2014 2 Photos

  • wilson,robert.jpg ‘Dangerous’ suspect in police custody

    A man sought by the Vermillion County Sheriff's Department has been nabbed by police in Indianapolis.

    July 8, 2014 1 Photo

  • eBus brings financial empowerment to town

    A 40-foot long mobile classroom is scheduled to roll  into Terre Haute today, carrying what its sponsors call “financial empowerment.”

    July 8, 2014

  • MET 070714 CULVER PHOTO.jpg Maker of history

    A humble man with a heart for helping others is an apt description for Terre Haute resident Curtis B. Culver.
    Culver died July 2 at age 94, leaving behind a legacy of missionary work and social involvement.

    July 7, 2014 3 Photos

  • MET 070714 TRASH TRANSFER.jpg Petitioners push for recycling at fair

    A Vigo County environmental activist hopes to convince the Vigo County Fair Board to start recycling, especially during the county fair, and has started an online petition.

    July 7, 2014 5 Photos

  • MET 070714 SULLIVAN SQ2.jpg Veterans call on commissioners to protect war memorial

    Installing a camera on the second floor of the Sullivan County Courthouse may be one solution to curtailing what several veterans are calling a disgrace to a memorial that honors Americans who gave their lives in service to the country.

    July 7, 2014 4 Photos

  • Schools ethics case: Proposed deal to be reviewed

    The State Ethics Commission is set to review a proposed settlement Thursday in the ethics case against former Indiana Schools Superintendent Tony Bennett.

    July 7, 2014

  • Man airlifted to Indy after early morning crash

    A Clay City man sustained non-life-threatening injuries in a head-on collision early Monday morning on Indiana 46 at Riley Road southeast of Terre Haute.

    July 7, 2014

  • Man agrees to plea on youth sex charges

    A Terre Haute man received a suspended sentence in a plea agreement signed Monday as his jury trial was about to commence in Vigo Superior Court 1.

    July 7, 2014

Latest News Poll
AP Video
Police: Prostitute Linked to 2nd Death Chimp-attack Victim Lobbies Congress Obama Responds to Hecklers on Immigration FIFA Rejects Suarez Appeal Against Biting Ban Kim Kardashian Hits Up Valentino Show in Paris Police: Prostitute Accused in Overdose Death Israeli-Palestinian Tensions, Attacks Escalate World Cup Final Pits Argentina Against Germany Four Kids, Two Adults Shot Dead Near Houston Raw: Obama Shoots Pool in Denver Art of Haitian Machete Fighting Revived Neighbors Mourn Killing of Texas Family Thousands Attend NYC Firefighter's Funeral World's Tallest Water Slide: See It for Yourself Obama Talks Economy, Slams Republicans Robots Gearing Up for Their Own 'World Cup' Fans Dying to Be Near Jazz Greats Connecticut Boy Dies Inside Parked Car 'Game of Thrones' Leads Emmy Nominees Raw: Truck Crash Spills Turkeys on Va. Highway
NDN Video
Tiny Hamsters Who Ate Burritos are Back for a Tiny Hedgehog's Party Watch Kelly Ripa Get Soaked! 'Referee' Hands Out Yellow Cards for Social Faux Pas in NYC 2014 Emmy Nominees: 8 Snub Shockers Emma Watson Is Va-Va-Voom in Valentino 7 Infamous Sports Blowouts Argentina tops Holland in World Cup semifinals News flush: Japanese toilet exhibition making a splash Emmy Nominations: What to Watch For 'Game of Thrones' Leads 66th Emmy Awards Nominations Photographic 'Proof' That LeBron Is Leaving Miami - @TheBuzzeronFOX Elephant Pool Party at The Oregon Zoo Must-See! Berry and Fallon Form Human Hamster Wheel Pilot buys pizzas for travelers delayed by storm Klose nets record, Germany rout Brazil 7-1 'Purrmanently Sad Cat' Looks Adorably Sad All the Time Pharrell 'humbled' by success of mega-hit 'Happy' Day After: Brazil Reeling in WC Loss Jennifer Lawrence Facepalms Emma Watson Athletes Bare All for ESPN Magazine's Body Issue

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
  • -


    March 12, 2010

Real Estate News