Our Story

Families with significant wealth often face a dilemma – you want to make the most of your money, and use it for the things that are important to you … but you don’t want it to run your life or dominate your time.

Many of our clients come to us in this predicament. They want sophisticated, comprehensive wealth management. They want to be prepared for both expected and unexpected future challenges. They want to know how they are progressing toward their short-, medium- and long-term goals. But they want their choices simplified, so they can spend their time on the things they care about.

We created our practice specifically to deliver this type of service, providing planning, investments and thoughtful advice and strategies for every decision involving money. We function as your personal CFO in two ways. Strategically, we handle long-term planning and research, anticipating future needs and ensuring that your choices align with your goals. And tactically, we handle day-to-day management – coordinating with your accountant and attorney, handling transactional details, being responsive to your questions. We take care of it all, so you don’t have to.
Services Include
  • Wealth Management1
  • Financial Planning2
  • Estate Planning Strategies3
  • Sustainable Investing4
  • Philanthropic Services
  • Retirement Planning5
  • Trust Services*
  • 401(k) Rollovers
  • 529 Plans6
  • Alternative Investments7
  • Business Succession Planning8
  • Lending Products
  • Long Term Care Insurance9
  • Precious Metals10
Check the background of Our Firm and Investment Professionals on FINRA's BrokerCheck.*

Our Principles

The best client/advisor relationships are built on shared beliefs and values. Accordingly, we’d like to describe some of the guiding principles we’ve developed during our years of serving our clients. 

1. Think like a Boy Scout: Be prepared!
Scouts use this motto to stress ideas like thinking out potential situations BEFORE they occur, and being ready to act when the time is right.

2. Keep it simple
Winston Churchill said “all great things are simple.” As a team, we will typically strive to choose the simplest solution that can accomplish a client’s stated goals.

3. Conserve by being conservative
Many of our clients are as interested in preserving their wealth as in growing it. We typically favor investment strategies that are designed to achieve a goal with less risk.

4. A question of balance
Asset allocation is the most important determinant of portfolio performance. We recommend an appropriate allocation, with frequent rebalancing to maintain that ratio.

5. The value of cash
Many investors undersell the importance of cash. But within the context of a strategic portfolio, cash is crucial.

6. Have the tough conversations
Let’s be honest – even the best plans can go awry. If that happens, or even if it might happen, we tell you about it – and recommend adjustments as appropriate.

7. Money should work for our clients … but shouldn’t BE work for them
As much as anything, our clients want a trustworthy team to manage their wealth both day-to-day and long term. We do the hard work so you don’t have to.


    Trust – it’s easy to claim but tough to prove. Yet, it is perhaps the single most important factor in creating long-term relationships between client and advisor.

    For a team like ours, one way to measure trust is client retention. Many of our clients have been with us for decades. Another way is referrals – and many of our clients have introduced us to their friends and family.

    We are honored by their trust, and work to earn it every day by:

    • Doing the right thing
    • Being honest no matter the circumstances
    • Revealing and explaining every cost and fee
    • Presenting results honestly and frequently
    • Answering questions quickly
    • Listening more than talking

      Our Process

      In our view, there is only one way to provide effective goal-based wealth management – take the time needed up front to align your needs with sophisticated, tactics. Here are the steps we undertake BEFORE we invest a single dollar on your behalf:

      Get to know you: Family, time frame, values and what’s important to you.
      Articulate your objectives: What are you trying to accomplish? When will that happen?
      Create a balance sheet: Current and future liabilities, income sources, cash flow needs.
      Identify your “human” factors: Risk tolerance, tax concerns, personal issues.
      At this point, we combine what we’ve discovered with our research, recommended asset allocation strategy, and any other relevant factors, and build your recommended portfolio. 

      But it doesn’t end here. Wealth management is a process that goes on throughout your life, with portfolio adjustments, asset reallocation and other modifications. We manage your wealth on a day-to-day basis in response to market conditions, economic landscape and any changes in your life. 

      In a real sense, your initial plan is only the beginning.


        28 State Street
        26th Floor
        Boston, MA 02109
        (617) 570-9248(617) 570-9248

        Meet The Gemmell and Kurtz Group

        About Me

        Joe is the investment manager at The Gemmell and Kurtz Group at Morgan Stanley; he develops goal-based, long-term investment portfolios for our clients.

        Joe began his career at State Street Bank & Trust in Boston, working with institutional clients. He then moved to GW & Wade Asset Management so he could work with individuals and families. He joined Smith Barney in 1995, a legacy firm of Morgan Stanley. In 2011, his partner Micah Kurtz joined his team and later created The Gemmell and Kurtz Group. His background combines the sophistication and analytics of institutional investing with the goal-based approach of wealth management, along with the vast resources of Morgan Stanley.

        Joe earned a B.S. in Finance from UMass Lowell, and an M.S. in Finance from Boston College.

        He is committed to his community and family. Joe serves as Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Northeast Catholic College, and coaches the men’s rugby team at St. Anselm’s College. He is an avid hiker and enjoys spending time with his wife and four children.
        Securities Agent: VT, VA, TX, RI, PA, OR, OH, NY, NV, NM, NJ, NH, NC, MN, MI, ME, MD, MA, LA, IL, GA, FL, DE, DC, CT, CA, AZ, AR; General Securities Representative
        NMLS#: 1492050

        About Me

        Micah helps clients identify and articulate their short-, medium- and long-term financial goals, then designs and implements comprehensive wealth management plans and strategies to help reach them.
        He began his career in financial services at Morgan Stanley in 2011, joining his partner Joe Gemmell and later founded The Gemmell and Kurtz Group.
        Micah graduated from Thomas More College of Liberal Arts with a B.A. in Political Science. He later earned the prestigious CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER TM (CFP®) designation, which demonstrates both his skills in areas like financial, tax and estate planning, investment management and insurance strategies, and his commitment to ethical service.
        Micah devotes much of his spare time to service. He is a board member, trustee and treasurer for the Patrons of the Arts of the Vatican Museum, which preserves and restores Vatican art. Micah is a dedicated mentor to inner city youth, as well as a board member and trustee for the East Cambridge Scholarship Foundation. He also chairs his college alumni association.
        Securities Agent: TX, CT, WY, WV, WI, WA, VT, VI, VA, UT, TN, SD, SC, RI, PR, PA, OR, OK, OH, NY, NV, NM, NJ, NH, NE, ND, NC, MT, MS, MO, MN, MI, ME, MD, MA, LA, KY, KS, IN, IL, ID, IA, HI, GA, FL, DE, DC, CO, CA, AZ, AR, AL, AK; Managed Futures; General Securities Representative; Investment Advisor Representative
        NMLS#: 1539481

        About Me

        Brook is a Senior Registered Associate joining us from BlackRock Investment Management. Recently he completed his Masters of Science in Banking and Financial Services Management at Boston University. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Graphic Design from the University of Missouri in Kansas City. Brook and his wife live just north of Boston with their two year old son. We are sure you will enjoy getting to know him.
        Investment and Market Perspectives

        On the Markets


        Creating customized financial strategies for the challenges that today's families face.
        • Estate Planning Strategies
        • 529 Plans / Education Savings Planning
        • Long Term Care Insurance
        • Special Needs Planning
        • Trust Services
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        • Succession Planning
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        • Donor Advised Funds
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        Ready to start a conversation? Contact The Gemmell and Kurtz Group today.
        Market Information Delayed 20 Minutes
        1Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC (“Morgan Stanley”), its affiliates and Morgan Stanley Financial Advisors or Private Wealth Advisors do not provide tax or legal advice. Clients should consult their tax advisor for matters involving taxation and tax planning and their attorney for legal matters.

        2Morgan Stanley offers a wide array of brokerage and advisory services to its clients, each of which may create a different type of relationship with different obligations to you. Please consult with your Financial Advisor to understand these differences.

        3Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC (“Morgan Stanley”), its affiliates and Morgan Stanley Financial Advisors and Private Wealth Advisors do not provide tax or legal advice. Clients should consult their tax advisor for matters involving taxation and tax planning and their attorney for matters involving trust and estate planning and other legal matters.

        4The returns on a portfolio consisting primarily of Environmental, Social and Governance (“ESG”) aware investments may be lower or higher than a portfolio that is more diversified or where decisions are based solely on investment considerations. Because ESG criteria exclude some investments, investors may not be able to take advantage of the same opportunities or market trends as investors that do not use such criteria.

        5Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC (“Morgan Stanley”), its affiliates and Morgan Stanley Financial Advisors or Private Wealth Advisors do not provide tax or legal advice. Clients should consult their tax advisor for matters involving taxation and tax planning and their attorney for legal matters.

        6Investors should consider many factors before deciding which 529 plan is appropriate. Some of these factors include: the Plan’s investment options and the historical investment performance of these options, the Plan’s flexibility and features, the reputation and expertise of the Plan’s investment manager, Plan contribution limits and the federal and state tax benefits associated with an investment in the Plan. Some states, for example, offer favorable tax treatment and other benefits to their residents only if they invest in the state’s own Qualified Tuition Program. Investors should determine their home state’s tax treatment of 529 plans when considering whether to choose an in-state or out-of-state plan. Investors should consult with their tax or legal advisor before investing in any 529 Plan or contact their state tax division for more information. Morgan Stanley Smith Barney LLC does not provide tax and/or legal advice. Investors should review a Program Disclosure Statement, which contains more information on investment options, risk factors, fees and expenses and possible tax consequences.

        7Alternative Investments are speculative and include a high degree of risk. An investor could lose all or a substantial amount of his/her investment. Alternative investments are suitable only for qualified, long-term investors who are willing to forgo liquidity and put capital at risk for an indefinite period of time.

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        10Precious metals are speculative investments and, as such, their value can be subject to declining market conditions.

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