Derek Schmidly already has received his Master of Business Administration, started his own business and become an adjunct professor at Evangel University – and he’s only 28.

Two months after receiving his MBA from the University of Missouri-Columbia, Schmidly in May 2009 launched Auxan Capital Advisors LLC, an independent investment management company.

Through his practice, Schmidly seeks to address problems he noted in the industry, such as brokers being paid incentives for making moves – pushing investment products that pay the highest commissions, for example – that might not be in the best interests of their clients.

“I wanted to have a business where the interests of the adviser were aligned with the interests of the client,” Schmidly says.

He also set out to avoid what he calls passive management, or the “buy and hold philosophy,” which potentially exposes investors to risk during recessions.

“We pulled our clients completely out of stocks the first week of January 2008 and sidestepped the majority of the market collapse,” Schmidly says.

In fall 2009, Schmidly began as a volunteer leader of Evangel’s Student Investment Group, through which students research and analyze macroeconomics, industry sectors and individual companies to learn how to make good investments.

Last fall, when Evangel added a finance major, Schmidly’s role expanded to include teaching advanced courses in strategic investing. “When I was a student at Evangel, I would always tell people that if they would have had a finance major, I would have switched in a heartbeat,” Schmidly says. “Now students are able to take the road that was not available to me, and I am able to help them learn the skills they need to be successful.”

Schmidly teaches courses in fixed-income investing and equities and derivatives. “These are brand-new courses, so I am starting from scratch in putting together the material to teach,” he says.

Schmidly is a regular contributor to charities and sets aside 15 percent of his top-line revenue from Auxan Capital Advisors in a donor fund, allowing clients to choose causes and organizations they would like the funding to benefit. Since 2009, nearly $15,000 has been put into the fund, he says.

“Because of my faith, I believe that giving generously and encouraging others to do the same is important to trusting God and showing concern for the needs of others,” Schmidly says.

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