Geneos Wealth Management: Joseph Tennison Barred

My Deep Dive into the Case of Bradley Joseph Tennison’s Deceptive Scheme

Greetings, I am Emily Carter, an experienced financial analyst and author. Today, I wish to discuss the concerning situation involving ex-Geneos Wealth Management consultant Bradley Joseph Tennison, who has been prohibited from working in the sector by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Furthermore, he is required to undergo three years of supervised probation and pay back almost $8.2 million due to his involvement in a scam related to the sale of bogus investments, purportedly for a religious and humanitarian initiative called The Joseph Project. Tennison has acknowledged the accusations by pleading guilty.

The Deception Behind The Joseph Project

The Joseph Project was masked as an investment opportunity, allowing participants to invest indirectly in what was portrayed as a private, exclusive offering. Tennison, positioning himself as the point person for this project, convinced investors that their money would be funneled into banks for high-return ‘after-hours trading.’ He sold this idea by claiming to have personally enjoyed monthly returns of 10 percent on his seven-figure investment. Swept up by these promises, nine individuals entrusted their money to these unsanctioned securities from October 2015 to September 2016.

An Examination of Bradley Joseph Tennison’s Past and Present Activities

Digging into Tennison’s background via his BrokerCheck profile, I discovered that this was not his first brush with controversy. With five customer disputes tied specifically to the Joseph Project—four settled and one for $4.5 million still pending—it’s clear the pattern of dishonesty ran deep. Tennison’s prior history includes being let go from Oberlin Financial for circumventing a supervisor to directly process transactions, and suspicious activities at First Allied Securities, before his 12-year tenure at Geneos.

Despite these past missteps, nothing came to light until a complaint from a former Geneos client regarding The Joseph Project, revealing that Tennison had been conducting business that the firm itself had no record of. His response to their inquiries? Hardly anything more than evasive remarks before he was eventually forced out.

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Where Things Stand Today

In July 2018, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) stripped Tennison of his position for not providing testimony—though he had initially appeared cooperative—regarding allegations of steering clients towards a $300,000 investment outside of his firm.

Furthermore, by January 2021, Arizona regulators revoked his securities license and fined him $75,000. The efforts to bring Tennison to account are a testament to our industry’s commitment to rooting out bad actors, keeping in mind the astonishing fact that improper investment recommendations by financial advisors cost clients up to 1% in return each year, a seemingly small percentage that can compound significantly over time.

As a professional dedicated to informing and assisting individuals in navigating these complex financial landscapes, I am reminded of a quote often attributed to Warren Buffet: “It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it.” The case of Bradley Joseph Tennison stands as a stark reminder of this. As investors, always verify an advisor’s credentials, no less their FINRA CRD number, and never let the allure of outsized returns cloud your judgment. Doing so helps ensure that the only ones benefiting from your hard-earned money are you and your loved ones.

In the financial world, transparency and due diligence are the bedrock of trust. I hope this story empowers you to be ever vigilant and informed. Remember, while the lure of high returns can be enticing, the pursuit of such should never be at the expense of security and peace of mind. Let’s invest wisely and stay informed.

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