RETIREMENT PLANS ARE COMPLICATED.
WE MAKE THE PROCESS SIMPLE.
As a leading national retirement services company, we provide third-party administration and fiduciary services to financial advisors, wealth managers and businesses of all sizes. Our commitment to providing expert consultation, resources and exceptional customer service has positioned us as one of the largest, privately held third-party administrators in the nation. We proudly serve more than 7,500 plan sponsors, with more than $7.5 billion in retirement assets under our administration. You can count on us to deliver on time, on budget and with precise attention to detail.
THE RETIREMENT ADVANTAGE (TRA)
Concierge Service. We match you with one of our dedicated consultants, who is readily available to answer your questions; guide you through the process; help you adhere to timelines and compliance deadlines; provide the resources necessary for informed decision-making; and assist you in communicating with government and regulatory agencies. Your TRA consultant will stay with you every step of the way. We provide custom solutions; therefore, you deserve consistent, personal attention from the same knowledgeable person on whom you can depend.
Value and Expertise. Your plan will be supported by our experts — many of whom have achieved national certifications in the employee benefits field, including the American Society of Pension Professionals & Actuaries.
Leading Technology. Our TRA team adopts and develops the latest technology to provide you with best-in-class access, communication and efficiency. We invite our plan sponsors, participants and wealth managers to use our client portals for quick and easy access to all of your plan information. We work to integrate our systems and tools to provide real-time, quick, clear data about your plan.
Preferred Partner. We are a preferred TPA and select partner of American Funds, AUL/OneAmerica, The Guardian, Great-West, Hartford Life, ING, John Hancock, Lincoln Financial Group, MassMutual, Transamerica, Mutual of Omaha, Nationwide, Principal Financial Group and more. We also have open architecture products, with access to hundreds of mutual funds.
Matt Schoneman President
Matt is recognized for his strategic focus, vision and judgment gained during 20 years of progressively responsible experience in the retirement plan industry. He is a graduate of Western Illinois University and holds a Bachelor of Business degree in Marketing and is a member of several professional organizations including the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries (ASPPA), National Institute of Pension Administrators (NIPA), and National Association of Professional Employer Organizations (NAPEO).
Michelle Zentner, QKA, RPA Director of Operations
As the old saying goes, “Love what you do and do what you love.” These words hold true for Michelle. Since entering the retirement service industry in 2000, Michelle has happily laid down deep roots and grown her career with The Retirement Advantage (TRA) for nearly 15 years. She is passionate about and dedicated to finding the most efficient workflow to guarantee client needs are met with full satisfaction.
In her role as director of operations, Michelle is responsible for directing and controlling activities for various departments to ensure effective policies and procedures are in place and contribute to TRA’s, and their client’s, success, profitability and retention goals.
Jeffrey Schreiber, JD, ChFC Director of Sales
As TRA’s Director of Sales, Jeffrey leads a team of 10 Regional Sales Consultants (RSC’s) and 4 Internal Sales Consultants (ISC’s) focused on growing TRA’s client base. The team is focused on providing best in class consulting services to our record keeping partners’ wholesalers, retirement plan advisors, and their plan sponsor clients and prospects
Jeffery’s emphasis is on strengthening relationships with key contacts at our record keeping platform partners, broker-dealers, and centers of influence as well as developing the team of professionals that work with him.
Since 1996 Jeffery has worked in the financial services industry in operations, operations management, sales, and sales management roles, record keeping, DCIO, and third party administration firms.
Jeffery attended The Ohio State University with a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration.
Linda Springer, CPA Director of Finance and Accounting
Linda Springer is a seasoned accountant with more than 25 years of experience. She is a licensed CPA in the state of Wisconsin, and obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Managerial Accounting, with a minor in Business Administration, from the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay. Prior to joining TRA in 2014, she was the manager of finance and accounting for a regional wireless telecommunications carrier for seventeen years.
At TRA, Linda oversees all aspects of accounting, billing and collections, budgeting, and financial analysis. Passionate about providing clear and accurate billings for TRA’s services, Linda and her team are always available to answer any questions our plan sponsors may have regarding their fee schedules or invoices and assisting to resolve any issues they may have.
Outside of the Office:
A life-long resident of Appleton, Wisconsin, Linda loves spending time with her family and especially loves spoiling her four grandsons. She and her husband share a passion for photography and travel, and are active members of their church, where Linda serves on the finance committee and sings with the contemporary praise choir.
Charlie Pritzl Director of Plan Administration
Charlie has 21 years of experience within the retirement plan industry. He is passionate about making sure the client’s needs to have a successful retirement plan are met and that all involved in the plan can plan a solid retirement future.
In his role as the Director of Plan Administration, Charlie is responsible for overseeing the entire Plan Administration area. Both the Plan Administration Manager, Client Relations and the Plan Administration Manager, Production will be reporting directly to Charlie. Charlie will be tasked with forging stronger relationships and communication between the two areas, ensuring we are functioning as one team with one goal. He will also be dedicating his time to bringing higher degrees of efficiencies to the areas, taking TRA to that next level of servicing.
When Charlie is not at work he can be found using his analytical skills determining the correct angle to place a 9-iron shot on the green at a local golf course or determining what angles to use in setting up his tent while out camping and enjoying nature whenever possible.
Lisa Pfautz, ASA, MAAA, MSPA Director of Plan Administration, Defined Benefit Services
Lisa joined TRA in 2018 and has 18 years of experience in retirement plan actuarial administration. In her role as Director of Plan Administration, Defined Benefit Services, Lisa is leading the initiative to develop the TRA defined benefit product line, along with creating an internal structure to support long-term, sustained growth and success for this new area.
As an enrolled actuary, Lisa serves as a consultant for employers sponsoring qualified and non-qualified retirement plans, including cash balance plans. She also consults on post-employment benefits. She is an Associate of the Society of Actuaries and a member of the American Academy of Actuaries and the American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries.
When Lisa is not at work she can be found spending time with her five grandchildren or camping and hiking in the Pennsylvania forests. She is an avid fiction reader.
Bill Sunagel Communication and Marketing Director
As Communication and Marketing Director, Bill Sunagel is responsible for developing and executing all of TRA’s communication and marketing initiatives. Bill plays a vital role in the development of TRA’s short and long term marketing strategies, aligned across all departments and phases of the business. Bill is also accountable for positioning TRA’s growth strategy, cultivating opportunities in new and existing customer markets, and growing demand for TRA’s products/services. In addition, Bill oversees TRA’s multi-channel marketing plan for sales support, customer acquisition, customer retention, customer loyalty, PR, web management and lead generation. Furthermore, he will ensure the TRA brand is communicated clearly and consistently by TRA associates to our clients and partners.
Bill has 17 plus years of B-2-B and B-2-C marketing experience; with various positions including Marketing Director, Internet Marketing, Graphic Design and Public Relations. Bill has unique combination of creativity and analytical skills with the ability to assess both vantage points to create desirable solutions. Bill holds a Bachelor’s degree in Communication with emphasis in Public Relations from Marian University in Fond du Lac, WI.
Outside of the Office:
Bill enjoys spending time with family and friends, coaching/playing hockey, skiing, fishing, snorkeling, mountain biking and pretty much anything outdoors.
Annie DeHaven, SPHR, SHRM-CP Human Resources Manager
Annie’s career in Human Resources started in Chicago with Morningstar, Inc., after graduating from the University of Dayton with a Bachelors of Arts Degree in Communications Management, and a double minor in Marketing and English. With a desire to experience multiple aspects of the Human Resources field she accepted a Benefits Administrator and then Manager position with UPSHOT, a marketing agency in Chicago, focusing mainly on benefit administration, management of on boarding of new employees, payroll, and management of the facilities and office administration staff. From there, she held an Associate Manager position with a media agency, Mindshare, where her responsibilities focused on recruiting, benefit administration, management of the internship program and creation of a corporate work life balance program.
After that Annie decided to take her show on the road, move to Wisconsin, and joined TRA in 2004 where she is currently our Human Resources Manager. She is a department of one and responsible for all things Human Resources related, including benefits administration, employee relations, recruiting and hiring, and strategically supporting TRA in any way possible.
Career Achievements and credentials:
- Senior Professional in Human Resources (SPHR) from HR Certification Institute
- SHRM Certified Professional (SHRM-CP) from Society for Human Resources Management
Outside of the Office:
Annie loves spending time with friends and family, traveling, skiing and reading. She is also enjoys spending time volunteering with Special Olympics, providing meals for the homeless at Guest House of Milwaukee and is an active member of the Junior League of Milwaukee.
Mark Ruhland IT Manager
Mark has been working in the IT field since the Y2K bug and has always had a passion for technology since first honing in his baby rattle skills. He has a well-rounded background with experience in help desk, servers, storage, networking, IT consulting, and management. He is always looking for ways that IT can better serve TRA and our clients. Outside of work Mark can often be found contemplating what came first, the power on button or the power off button.
Jenny Nowak Plan Administration Manager, Production
Jenny has more than 10 years of experience within the retirement plan industry. She is dedicated in making sure the client’s needs to have a successful retirement plan are met so that all involved can plan for the retirement they strive for.
In her role as the Plan Administration Manager, Jenny is responsible for making sure the team provides timely and accurate reporting as efficiently as possible. Jenny is always looking for ways to improve our processes to achieve these goals.
When Jenny is not at work she is spending time with her family and friends along with traveling whenever possible.
Amy Hilton Plan Administration Manager, Client Services
With 18 years of experience in the retirement plan industry, Amy began her career with TRA in 2013. Amy quickly advanced to Team Leader and was most recently promoted to Plan Administration Manager, Client Services. In this role, she is responsible for directing a team of Client Relationship Managers in building lasting, value driven, client relationships by providing an exceptional customer service experience.
Since earning her Bachelor of Science Degree in Finance and Business Administration from Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania in 2000, Amy has provided a variety of retirement plan services for both Defined Contribution and Defined Benefit Plans. Amy is currently pursuing her Qualified 401(k) Administrator (QKA).
When Amy is not in the office she enjoys running and spending time with family and friends in the mountains and at the beach.
Carrie Bernier, QKA Plan Implementation Manager
Carrie began her career at TRA in 2014 as a Client Relationship Manager (CRM), and quickly advanced to Team Leader. Carrie was then promoted to Plan Installation Manager where she is responsible for the successful on-boarding of TRA’s new business clients, in addition to maintaining her responsibilities as TRA’s Integration Specialist where she is dedicated to ensuring the seamless transition of TRA’s acquisitions. Carrie has 11 years of retirement plan experience in 401(k), Defined Benefit and Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP).
Among Carrie’s many notable career achievement and credentials are:
- BS from University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh
- Series 7 (not active)
- QKA designation from ASPPA
Outside of the Office:
When Carrie is not in the office she enjoys spending time with family and friends, reading and going “up north” to enjoy the outdoors.
Linda Wyttenbach, QPA, QKA Document Services Manager
Linda’s bio is coming soon!
Adrianne Kuchta, QKA Processing Manager
As Processing Manager, Adrianne will be directing a team of Transaction Coordinators accountable for providing timely and accurate service to clients. She will also be monitoring processes and procedures to ensure accuracy, timeliness, and measurable performance of ongoing processing to ensure we are meeting and exceeding our service standards.
Adrianne was promoted from Plan Administration Team Leader to her current position of Processing Manager. She has over 11 years of administration experience working with 401(k)/profit sharing plans, defined benefit plans and Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP).
Among Adrianne’s many notable career achievement and credentials are:
- Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Communication from The University of Northern Iowa
- Qualified 401(k) Administrator (QKA) from ASPPA
Outside the Office:
Adrianne enjoys spending time her husband and two young children outside as often as Wisconsin weather allows, cooking and reading.
Why Partner with TRA
The Retirement Advantage, Inc. (TRA) is a premier third-party administrator (TPA) that specializes in administration, consultation and compliance of retirement plans for businesses nationwide. When you partner with TRA, you gain a trusted retirement plan expert.
For over two decades, TRA has been committed to delivering results for our business partners, plan sponsors, and participants so that they can achieve their financial goals. TRA is in the top 5% of independently owned, privately held third-party administrators in the nation because we focus on your clients’ success. Click here to view our infographic.
TRA is committed to delivering personalized retirement solutions for, privately held business owners and their employees to help them achieve their financial goals.
As an industry-leading retirement plan solutions provider, TRA will assist our plan advisors and plan sponsors in meeting their unique plan design goals, while building on our reputation for proactive plan consultation and exceptional customer service.
Today, we proudly service more than 7,500 plan sponsors and have more than $7.5 billion in retirement assets under our administration nationwide.
Our Business is Knowing Your Business
The complexities of offering and administrating a retirement plan are often time consuming and confusing for many small businesses to manage.
Working with your financial advisor, TRA’s dedicated retirement professionals proactively provide a high level of personalized service to understand your vision for the retirement plan and quickly make recommendations that are in your best interest, while always abiding by industry compliance and ethical standards.
After we have crafted a retirement strategy that reflects your vision, business needs and resources, we specially design a service model to meet your needs. This allows TRA to seamlessly integrate into your workflow and saves you valuable time and money.
The Right Resources and Experience for the Right Financial Solutions
Our scale of clients, investment options and retirement platforms enables us to partner with a wide variety of industry leaders.
Through our extensive industry experience, quality processes and depth of resources, we have developed stringent criteria for evaluating which best-in-class retirement providers are committed to excellent customer service and superior retirement outcomes, and we hold them to the same high standards to which we hold ourselves.
We are not forced to fit your plan into a specific box, investment type or product. This allows TRA to be a true partner to you.
Our Custom Service Model & Support Systems Make the Difference
All clients are not created equal or want the same “one size fits all” approach. As part of the value that TRA delivers, you receive a solution and process designed to meet your needs, your resources and your goals.
TRA provides all clients and partners with a dedicated single point of contact and a support team that monitors and consults with you on how to keep your plan performing to your specific goals.
Retirement Plan Solutions
TRA has made a commitment to bring together the services that benefit plan sponsors and keep them in compliance.
- Plan Design and Consulting
- Flexible Plan Design Options
- Summary Plan Descriptions
- Prototype and Custom Plan Documents
- Full Conversion and Implementation Services
- Core Compliance Services
- Signature-Ready Form 5500
- Integrated Payroll Services
Click here to view the plan we service.
Making a Real Difference for You
TRA uses state-of-the-art quality control processes and follow-up procedures to help minimize risk 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, year after year. What’s more, the TRA Quality Team reviews every plan as a second quality check for accuracy and compliance, ensuring your retirement plan avoids any possible breaches from a Department of Labor or IRS standpoint.
As your retirement needs and government regulations change, TRA proactively takes the necessary steps to communicate how those changes will impact your retirement strategy, inform you of the optimal options and implement any plan changes as quickly as possible.