Tom Hegna

Retirement Expert & Speaker, Author of the Bestselling Paychecks & Playchecks

Tom Hegna
Tom Hegna

Nobody knows retirement planning better than Tom Hegna. Tom is the author of the bestselling book Paychecks and Playchecks: Retirement Solutions for Life (Acanthus Publishing, 2011) which has sold over 45,000 copies around the world. The top-rated Kindle version has been the #1 bestseller in its category for over two years. His new book is Retirement Income Masters: Secrets of the Pros (Acanthus Publishing, 2013). As a former First Vice President at New York Life, retired Lieutenant Colonel, and economist, Tom has delivered over 2,000 seminars on his signature Paychecks and Playchecks retirement approach helping Baby Boomers and seniors retire the right way.

Tom specializes in creating simple and powerful retirement solutions. He has the unique ability to pump up a crowd, make people laugh and solve complex financial problems using easy-to-understand words, ideas and stories. He’s been featured in Fox Business,Forbes, Money Rates, and many other leading publications. He is available to speak with businesses, government organizations, professional associations, financial professionals and their clients across the globe. Call 1-855-TOM-HEGNA to book him for your next event and create an unforgettable experience for your audience!

The Nitty Gritty…

When Tom first began his career in insurance, he brought with him a fiery, contagious, and relentless energy that would transform the entire industry.

Possessing an extraordinary drive for success, Tom qualified for membership into the Million Dollar Round Table during each of his first three years with MetLife. He also, qualified four times for the MetLife President’s Conference and received the National Quality Award and the National Sales Achievement Award. In 1992, he placed over 425 policies. Combining his knack for selling with hard work and a deep understanding of financial products, he went on to become the National Marketing Manager for Variable Life Products and trained over 10,000 agents.

In 1994, Tom was named Agency Manager for the Chandler, Arizona agency and qualified for the Manager’s Council – an elite leadership group reserved for the top five percent company wide. Obtaining his CLU and ChFC designations from the American College, Tom joined New York Life in 1996 and was named Director of Annuity Sales for the West Central Zone. He became a Regional Manager for the Annuity Wholesaling team in 2002. In 2006 he became the National Manager for all of the Annuity and Mutual Fund wholesalers. Last year, all of the LTC wholesalers reported to Tom as well and this team of nearly 100 professionals set sales records in all product lines.

Climbing the corporate ladder, Tom reached the position of Vice President in March of 2006 and First Vice President in 2010. He took full advantage of his management role giving over 2,000 seminars, and 3,000 agent training sessions nationwide and growing agent investment sales to over five billion dollars.

When New York Life began its focus on Lifetime Income Annuities in the early 2000’s, Tom gave the first presentation. At that time sales were $100 million. Last year, sales were $2 Billion. Tom’s unrelenting advocacy for product changes, illustration enhancements, use of technology for training, and a focus on simple sales ideas led to a 27% market share within just a few short years. He has subsequently shared his insights at the top industry meetings across the globe.

Samples of his speaking engagements include:

  • Main Platform MDRT Top of the Table
  • Main Platform MDRT
  • Main Platform NAIFA
  • Main Platform MDRT Experience in Singapore
  • Main Platform Society of Financial Services Professionals
  • Numerous State NAIFA Meetings (across the country)
  • National AALU Meeting
  • Boomertirement Road Shows (across the country)

In 2011, Tom retired from New York Life to dedicate himself full-time to speaking, training, and consulting with financial advisors on how to best optimize client portfolios and provide retirement solutions for life.

Born and raised in Glenwood, Minnesota, Tom attended North Dakota State University on a four-year Army ROTC scholarship and graduated with honors as a distinguished Military Graduate, earning three majors – Economics, Business Administration, and German – in four years.

Commissioned as a Second Lieutenant, Tom served as an Intelligence and Security Officer and as an Electronic Warfare Officer in the 3rd Infantry Division in West Germany. He then served as a Company Commander in the 7th Infantry Division (Light) in Ft. Ord, California. After serving six years in the US Army on Active Duty, Tom started his career in the insurance business but remained in the U.S. Army Reserve. He served in many assignments culminating as Battalion Commander of the 301st Military Intelligence Battalion in Phoenix, Arizona. Tom’s Battalion conducted counter-terrorism operations in Southeast Asia. After spending 16 ½ years in the US Army Reserve, Tom retired in 2006 as Lieutenant Colonel with numerous awards and decorations including the Meritorious Service Medal with oak leaf cluster, the Army Commendation Medal with 3 oak leaf clusters, the Navy Achievement Medal and the Army Achievement Medal with 2 oak leaf clusters.

Tom currently resides in Arizona with his wife and four children.

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