Cotten Padalino Group

Private Wealth Advisors
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Our mission is to simplify and modernize our clients' financial lives, enabling them to pursue their life passions.

We take a team approach to working with families and their key advisors, typically their trust and estate attorneys and accountants. 

We’re committed to helping our clients think about and deploy their wealth in meaningful ways.

For each family, that path is unique. Our clients' priorities become our priorities.

Meet the Team

The private wealth advisors with Merrill Lynch’s Private Banking and Investment Group are rigorously trained to meet the specialized needs of individuals and families of wealth. We build relationships based on trust and personalized service.

Kendall G. Cotten

Kendall G. Cotten

Managing Director

Private Wealth Advisor

214.303.5845
Diane H. Padalino

Diane H. Padalino

Managing Director

Private Wealth Advisor

303.446.5598
Paige A. Southern

Paige A. Southern

Private Wealth Relationship Manager

214.303.5841
Jill D. Arnold

Jill D. Arnold

Senior Private Wealth Associate

303.446.5512

Strategies designed to help you achieve your goals

As a client of the Private Banking and Investment Group at Merrill Lynch, you have access to services and resources ordinarily reserved for the world’s largest institutions. We work with individuals, families spanning multiple generations, business owners and executives. Using a goals-based wealth management approach, we put our clients at the center of every personalized strategy.

Our Approach

About Us

We, Kendall and Diane, began working together in 2006 while at Goldman Sachs Private Bank. The Cotten-Padalino Group is now a 5-person team with approximately 35 clients who have entrusted us with $1.5B in assets, as of December 2017. In 2013 we left Goldman Sachs and moved to the Private Banking and Investment Group at Merrill Lynch to provide our clients with third-party investment management, a single fixed fee structure and broader banking capabilities.

We each have over 25 years of experience in the financial services industry. Diane spent the early part of her career in New York working on the fixed income trading floor advising companies on bond financings and overall liability management. She learned first-hand how leverage can impact one’s balance sheet and financial stability. Kendall spent a number of years in the 1980s working for an independent family-owned oil and gas company evaluating and acquiring oil and gas properties throughout the U.S. It was a defining time in Kendall’s career as he helped the company’s owners navigate the challenges of an incredibly cyclical and illiquid asset. 

Our experiences have led us to develop a very disciplined wealth management process that is focused on helping clients preserve and prudently grow their wealth, while managing the risks of portfolio concentrations, liquidity and leverage.

Achievements

Kendall and Diane have both been recognized as Forbes "Best-in-State Wealth Advisors" in 2018.

Diane was also named as an advisor in Barron's "America's Top 1,200 Financial Advisors for 2018: State-by-State" in 2018, Forbes’ "America’s Top Women Wealth Advisors" list in 2017 & 2018, and Working Mother/SHOOK Research's Top Wealth Adviser Moms in 2017.*

Source: Forbes "Best-in-State Wealth Advisors" list, February 2018. For more information about the selection criteria, go to http://details-he.re/UbRCGT. Forbes is a trademark of Forbes Media LLC. All rights reserved. These rankings and ratings are not representative nor indicative of any one client's experience, future performance, or investment outcome.
Source: Barron's "Top 1,200 Financial Advisors" list, March 12, 2018. For more information about the selection criteria, go to https://www.ml.com/articles/awards-recognition.html. Barron's is a trademark of Dow Jones & Company, Inc. All rights reserved. Rankings and recognition from Barron's are no guarantee of future investment success and do not ensure that a current or prospective client will experience a higher level of performance results and such rankings should not be construed as an endorsement of the advisor.
Source: Forbes "America's Top Women Wealth Advisors" ranking was developed by SHOOK Research and is based on in-person and telephone due diligence meetings and a ranking algorithm that includes: client retention, industry experience, review of compliance records, firm nominations; and quantitative criteria, including: assets under management and revenue generated for their firms. Investment performance is not a criterion because client objectives and risk tolerances vary, and advisors rarely have audited performance reports. Rankings are based on the opinions of SHOOK Research, LLC and not representative nor indicative of any one client's experience, future performance, or investment outcome. Neither Forbes nor SHOOK Research receives compensation in exchange for placement on the ranking. Rankings and recognition from Forbes are no guarantee of future investment success and do not ensure that a current or prospective client will experience a higher level of performance results and such rankings should not be construed as an endorsement of the advisor. Forbes is a trademark of Forbes Media LLC. All rights reserved.
Working Mother/SHOOK Research’s “Top Wealth Adviser Moms” list, September/October 2017. For more information about the selection criteria, go to http://details-he.re/4JoTZ29. SHOOK Research is a trademark of SHOOK Research, LLC. All rights reserved. The ranking or ratings shown here may not be representative of all client experiences because they reflect an average or sampling of the client experiences. These rankings or ratings are not indicative of any future performance or investment outcome.

Our Clients

The majority of our clients are entrepreneurs who have sold their businesses, divorced and widowed individuals, or family members who have recently inherited wealth and are newly responsible for its management.

We have significant experience guiding these types of clients through the process of developing a wealth management strategy. We would welcome the opportunity to meet with you, hear your family’s personal story, and discuss your unique vision and priorities.

Your Goals

Our mission is to simplify and modernize our clients’ financial lives, enabling them to pursue their life passions. We take a team approach to working with clients and their other key advisors, typically their trust and estate attorneys and accountants.

We’re committed to helping you and your family think about and deploy your wealth in meaningful ways. For each client, that path is unique. Perhaps you’re interested in funding your grandchildren’s higher education. Or maybe you’re passionate about expanding your art collection and want to assess your financing options. Or perhaps you’re considering a Donor-Advised Fund to support a cause that’s dear to you or someone you love. Your priorities become our priorities.

Our Process

We use a four-step process:
1) Document: First, we have in-depth conversations to discern your lifestyle, legacy and aspirational goals.  Integral to this step is our analysis of your personal financial statements, including your balance sheet.

2) Create: Next, we develop a fully integrated strategy that includes investments, trust and estate planning services, and traditional banking – each component customized for your goals. Every step of the way we are seeking the lowest cost, most tax-efficient and easiest to understand and execute strategy.

3) Implement: We then assist you in opening and funding investment and banking accounts, while overseeing the completion and execution of your trust and estate documents. 

4) Evaluate: Finally, we provide you with online interfaces and apps so that you can monitor your progress toward your goals. We suggest quarterly meetings to assess investment performance and annual meetings with key advisors to evaluate your estate and tax-planning initiatives.



*Banking Services are through Bank of America, N.A.

A Commitment to Service

Merrill Lynch’s Private Banking and Investment Group is committed to providing a select group of wealthy clients with highly personalized one-on-one service. When you work with us, our knowledgeable, rigorously trained Private Wealth Advisors will gain a deep understanding of your goals, help you develop a multigenerational wealth strategy, help you monitor its success and update your strategy as needed. We are committed to providing you access to the investment insights of Merrill Lynch and the banking convenience of Bank of America, and we will continue to invest in client tools and new technology to enhance your overall experience as you and your private wealth advisor pursue what’s most important to you.

Our Philosophy

We believe that your unique goals should be at the center of all of your financial decisions and form the foundation of your financial strategy. Because significant wealth requires sophisticated, highly customized strategies, we believe in building lasting relationships with a limited number of clients, taking the time to understand your most important priorities for today, tomorrow and your long-term future. Our philosophy celebrates collaboration. Working with a team of specialists, we draw on the resources and insights of a global financial institution to create strategies that reflect your aspirations for yourself and current and future generations of your family. Finally, we believe that while significant wealth brings complex challenges, our experience, passion and perspectives can help you simplify your life.

Let's have a conversation.

Your dedicated Private Banking and Investment Group team is ready to help you pursue what's most important to you.

Our Vision

For clients of substantial wealth, Merrill Lynch’s Private Banking and Investment Group provides an experience that is both powerful and personal. We are dedicated to helping you pursue your goals for today while developing a wealth strategy designed to support your family members for the years to come.

A trusted one-on-one relationship
Your private wealth advisor and team of specialists work with a limited number of clients, enabling them to focus their time, training and passion on helping you simplify your personal and business finances and prepare your next generation as stewards of wealth.

Boutique-like service with the access to the investment resources of Merrill Lynch and banking convenience of Bank of America

We combine the personalized attention and feel of a smaller firm with the power and insights of a global financial institution, creating strategies tailored to your unique situation.

A relentless commitment to transparency and customized strategies

As our client, know that we are working in your best interests, providing sophisticated strategies designed to anticipate and meet your evolving financial needs.

Cotten Padalino Group