“You Miss 100% of the shots you do not take.” - Wayne Gretzky
There are many levels to Derek Podolak. You see him as a Financial Advisor today however there have been many life experiences that have shaped his life to bring him to this point. He is a committed Father and Husband and strives everyday to help those around him achieve their goals not only financially but professionally and personally as well.
He comes from a humble upbringing as the son of Steelworker from Pittsburgh. His Father Edwin Podolak retired from the LTV Pittsburgh Works Plant in 1997 when the plant closed. His mother Mary was primarily a homemaker and entered the workforce later in life and rose the level of a Human Resources manager in Giant Eagle Grocery Stores in Pittsburgh.
Derek graduated from South Park High School in 1990 where he was a three-sport athlete in Football, Hockey, and Baseball. Earning multiple letters and awards in each sport. Following his graduation, he went on to attend West Virginia University earning a Liberal Arts Degree and being the first in his family to graduate from college. While attending WVU he worked for LTV Steel in the summers and was hired full time following his graduation from college. In 1997 The Pittsburgh Works Plant closed leaving him unemployed as a young man and contemplating his future.
Derek decided to return to school at Robert Morris University and start work on his MBA. While attending he played on the Hockey team as a graduate student for 2 seasons. It became increasingly difficult to remain a student as a young man and in 1999 returned to the Workforce for Mellon Bank. He rose to the level of Branch Manager and started work on earning his securities licenses all while finishing up his MBA at night and on the weekends.
In 2001 Mellon Bank was purchased by Citizens Financial Group and advanced through the system and rose to the level of Regional Sales Manager for Western Pennsylvania.
In 2003 he met his wife Carly and had 2 children Nathan and Rayna. They reside in South Park where he grew up. He also returned to become the Head Coach of the South Park High School Hockey team for 5 seasons where he guided them back to the playoffs and rebuilt the program to a Championship contender while advancing players on to the next level. Derek has donated countless hours to local hockey organizations as a Board Member, Coach, and Mentor. He enjoys working with young athletes and seeing them achieve their full potential.
These life lessons and experiences have helped shape his philosophy and how he deals with clients. He takes great pride in helping his clients utilize the various financial products available to them in the proper manor. He prides himself on making the complex world of financial services understandable.