Our Team

Chad W. Franks, CLF® CLU® ChFC® LUTCF

Managing Partner

My philosophy is to extend the best career opportunity available to those who believe there is a better future than today, those desiring an exceptional quality of life while being blessed to touch lives in the process. We do this by continuing to challenge ourselves, determining and earning our self-worth, and maintaining control of our careers, our futures, through an atmosphere of winning?and excellence.

Designations

Chartered Leadership Fellow (CLF®) - Leadership Fellow program provides financial services managers with the skills needed to recruit and retaining top performers, setting performance, developing effective business plans, and improving managerial skills.

Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC®) / Char. Life Underwriter (CLU®) / Life Underwriter Training Council Fellow (LUTCF®) - Received in 2014, 2011, and 2007 respectively. These designations indicate advanced training in comprehensive financial planning, including the application of estate, retirement and financial planning?knowledge to design individual client solutions

Related Affiliations & Achievements

  • Managing Partner — Mississippi General Office — November 2015 to Present
  • Corporate Vice President – West Central – September 2012 to Present
  • Managing Partner – Arkansas – November 2008 to August 2012
  • Senior Partner – Mississippi Office – September 2008 to October 2008
  • Partner – Mississippi Office – April 2005 to September 2008
  • Agent – Mississippi Office - July 2002 to March 2005
    • 2004 Centurion*
    • 2004 Executive Council* (8.5 months)
    • 2003 Centurion*
    • 2003 Executive Council* (9 months)
    • 2004 – wrote 160 total cases on 96 clients
    • 2003 – wrote 150 cases on 121 clients
  • Member of NAIFA since 2005
  • 2011 Arkansas Business Journal “Top 40 Under 40” Recipient
  • 2007 Mississippi Business Journal “Top 40 Under 40” Recipient

Home Office Awards

  • 2013 & 2014 – Zone Award of Excellence led Company in 5 key areas (Recruiting, Manpower, Life/Total Commission, and Life Cases)
  • 2011 Life Trophy – Highest % Growth in Life Commission amongst peers
  • 2010 President’s Trophy – Highest % Growth in Total Commission amongst peer group
  • 2009 View From The Top – Awarded to the top Agencies meeting 4 performance criteria
  • 2007 Gathering of Eagles Award Winner (National Recruiting and Commission Award)
  • 2006 Partner Career Commitment Award – one of 12 national recipients (pool of 420)
  • 2005 Partner Career Commitment Award – one of 14 national recipients (pool of 400+)

General Office Awards

  • 2004 New Organization Leader of the Year (most FYC among entire New Organization)
  • 2003 New Associate of the Year (most FYC in first 12 months of career among all TAS agents)
  • 2004-2002 Class Leader – most new commission among each peer class of new representatives
  • 2004-2002 Consistently wrote 10 applications (Life, Annuity, Long-Term Care or Mutual Fund sales) in 26 of first 30 months (the industry average is between 4-6 applications/month).

Regional/Zone Awards

  • 2009 – Reeves Cup – awarded to the #1 Recruiter amongst Peer Group in West Central Zone.
  • 2008 - The #1 Promotable Partner in Company2007 Partner GPA Award – top Partner GPA in South Central Zone

Personal Background, Education,
and Family Information

Wife: Missy - Married 22 years / Children: Conner (17), Grayson (13)
Father: Floyd Franks, 20 year Managing Partner, Birmingham and Nashville offices (retired)
Brother-In-Law: Jon Nickerson, Director of Operations, Greater Atlanta Office

Devin Wood

Partner

Devin joined New York Life in 2012 as an associate. During his time in the sales field, he achieved 2014 Quality Council and 2015 Executive Council, as well as 2015 Life All-Star. Devin was promoted into Management in September 2015 as an Associate Partner. He became a Partner in April, 2016.

Devin attended Oral Roberts University and served in the Military as a Public Affairs Specialist prior to joining New York Life. He is currently in his 9th year of military service with the Army Reserve. He and his wife, Amber, reside in Brandon, Mississippi with their two daughters, Emilie and Harper. They are active members of Madison Heights Church, and they enjoy spending their Saturdays in Starkville watching Mississippi State Football.

Phillip Pace, CFP®, ChFC®, CLU®, CLF®, and LUTCF

Partner

Phillip joined New York Life in March, 2017. Born and raised in Alabama, Phillip is a graduate of the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He found his calling in the insurance and financial services industry while still in college. After graduation, Phillip went full force and earned MDRT status early in his career. He entered into management and was promoted multiple times, holding multiple high level management positions in Alabama, Pennsylvania, Kentucky, Ohio, and Tennessee prior to relocating to Mississippi in 2012. Phillip is a 30+ year veteran of our industry. He is constantly striving to improve himself and currently holds the CFP®, ChFC®, CLU®, CLF®, and LUTCF designations.

Phillip enjoys playing basketball, tennis, golf, and bass guitar for his church. He and his wife, Holly, reside in Brandon. Between them, they are blessed with 7 grown children, and 1 granddaughter.

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Debbie W. Hyatt, CLU® ChFC® CLF

Agency Standards Consultant

Debbie joined New York Life in March, 1995, as an agent in the Mississippi General Office. She was promoted to Sales Development Manager in September, 1997, for the Mississippi Office. Debbie achieved her CLU® designation August, 2001 – the ChFC® designation August, 2003, and most recent the American college Leadership designation, CLF, in April, 2006. She was appointed Agency Standards Consultant for the Mississippi and Memphis General Office in January, 2006.

Debbie and her husband, Charles, reside in Madison, MS. They have six children and 6 grandchildren.

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Kim Hobkirk

Sales Development Manager

Kim began her New York Life career in 2014. Before her promotion into management, Kim achieved Executive Council in 2015 and 2016. She is also a recipient of the Career Life Success Award and a Registered Representative. Kim was born and raised in Brandon, MS. She graduated from the University Medical Center and spent 9 years in the medical field prior to joining New York Life. Kim enjoys travel, shopping and spending quality time with family and friends. She and her husband, Chris, reside in Brandon. They are the parents to 2 children, son Decker and daughter Julia Kate.

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TJ Barrett, FMLI

Administrative Manager

Before joining the Mississippi team in 2017, TJ began his career with New York Life in 2012 in the Greater Atlanta General Office. He trained in the Orlando, FL office as an Associate Administrative Manager, then accepted the position as Administrative Manager in the Cincinnati General Office in 2013. His team was recognized with the "Best in Class" award, presented to office teams who finish at the top of their respective Zones in both customer service and operations excellence. His contracting team was also presented with the Recruiting Recognition Award. In 2016, his service team finished amongst the very top of all 118 New York Life General Offices in quality assurance for life new business. He currently manages the staff at the Mississippi General Office in Ridgeland, MS and the sales office in Hattiesburg, MS. TJ is a graduate of the University of Georgia with a degree in Finance. He holds several designations including his FLMI, and is a Series 99 Operations Professional. He enjoys the outdoors, sports, and spending time with family and friends.