Stephan Shipe, PhD, CFA, CFP®

Independent, fee-only, hourly financial planning.

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Scholar Financial Advising Stephan Shipe, PhD, CFA, CFP®
Winston-Salem, North Carolina

Serving Clients Nationwide

Independent, fee-only, hourly financial planning.

Rated 5 out of 5
3 Certified Advisor Reviews™
Rate this Advisor

Areas of Focus

  • Capital Gains
  • Education Funding
  • Financial Life Planning
  • Investing
  • Retiring Early (F.I.R.E)

About Me

Hi, I'm Stephan Shipe. I started Scholar Financial Advising to help people achieve their financial goals by creating strong advisor-client relationships and not charging fees for financial advice in the traditional way.

I truly believe that the best way to receive financial advice is when there are no competing incentives and when conflicts of interests are minimized.

That’s why we decided to operate Scholar Financial Advising as an independent and fee-only financial advisory firm. We even took the fee-only idea one step further and instead of charging the common percentage of Assets Under Management fee, we charge an hourly fee for financial advice. This means that there are no account minimums, no requirement for us to take control of your account, and no sales commissions for our recommendations.

You pay us for advice and we give you that advice. A simple process; a true pay-for-service fee model.

As a finance professor, I love being able to share the magic of finance with students. I wanted to take that passion that I have for educating others on financial matters outside of the classroom and help those that are establishing and striving for their financial goals, so Scholar Financial Advising was created with all advisors holding at minimum a Ph.D. in Finance and experience as a finance professor.

Think of us as your private finance professor helping you to plan for your financial future and more importantly empowering you to take control of your financial life while acting as a guide along the way (without the hassle of final exams).

Our financial planning process has a strong technology focus to help busy local clients or non-local clients virtually.

Choosing someone to work with as a financial advisor is not a decision you should take lightly so I encourage you to reach out and let’s talk about what you are looking for in an advisor. We offer a no-obligation, free consultation to anyone considering us as their financial advisor. You can schedule your appointment directly from our website or reach out to me using the contact form above.

Professional Designations

  • Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA)
  • Ph.D. in Finance


  • CFA Institute
  • CFP Board
  • Fee Only Network
  • Financial Planning Association
  • Garrett Planning Network

Primary Location

Winston-Salem, NC

Meeting Options

  • Video Conference
  • In-Person
  • Phone

Compensation Methods

  • Fee Only
  • Flat Fee
  • Hourly Rate
  • One-time Financial Plan

What to expect in the first meeting

Click the 'Book Intro Call' button above to schedule a Welcome Meeting. This initial meeting is free and has no commitment. We can speak on the phone or over coffee to see whether our working together is a good fit. If you are outside the Winston-Salem area, I have a range of technology options that allow me to provide financial planning services remotely.

About our Firm

Scholar Financial Advising, LLC is a Winston-Salem, North Carolina based fee-only investment advisory firm focused on providing individuals with fiduciary financial planning services on a flat fee, hourly basis. Stephan Shipe, PhD, CFA, CFP® is the owner and advisor for Scholar Financial Advising LLC.

Financial advising requires a lot of trust from both client and advisor. We truly believe that each individual’s financial situation is unique and that a successful financial plan requires more than some calculations. This is why we emphasize the importance of building a strong advisor/client relationship and work hard to create and work toward financial goals as a team.

The fiduciary nature of our advice is very important to our core goals managing this financial planning firm. All advice you receive from Scholar Financial Advising is in your best interest and you’ll never have to question where competing incentives lie.

To facilitate the financial planning process we utilize a technology mix that allows for remote communication with clients, efficient document storage and sharing, and the use of customizable financial planning tools and software.

✅ Our Mission: Educate. Empower. Encourage. Educate clients on the importance of financial health as well as the steps to create and maintain a stable financial future. Empower them by giving them the skills and practical knowledge necessary to make positive financial decisions. Encourage them to make the right choices by reducing behavioral biases through communication, follow-up, the creation of a long-term client-advisor relationship.

✅ Who is a Good Fit: The majority of my clients are DIY investors who don’t want to hand over their investments over to an advisory firm or pay an Assets Under Management (AUM) fee. They are typically looking for someone to pull all the financial pieces together for them and come up with a financial plan that they can execute. We also work with clients who are looking for a second opinion or have a specific finance question.

📍While we are based and provide financial planning in Winston Salem, we can also help clients in the Clemmons, Lewisville, and Greensboro areas of the Triad region of North Carolina as well as remotely.


Florida State University, Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.), Finance | University of North Florida, BBA, Finance | Indian River State College, Associate of Arts



  • English

Hobbies and Interests

  • Camping
  • Canoeing
  • Family
  • Grilling
  • Motorcycling
  • Reading
  • Traveling

Who We Serve

  • Attorneys
  • Business Owners
  • College Graduates
  • Corporate Executives
  • Couples
  • Dentists
  • DIY Investors
  • Dual Income Family
  • Educators
  • Gen X
  • Gen Y / Millennials
  • Healthcare Professionals
  • Investors
  • Living in Retirement
  • Newly Engaged / Newlywed
  • Parents
  • Physicians
  • Technology Professionals
  • Young Families

To make Wealthtender free for readers, we earn a nominal monthly fee from financial advisors and firms in exchange for providing access to the benefits described here (including being featured on this profile page), subject to these terms. This compensation creates a natural conflict of interest when we favor their promotion over others. Wealthtender is not a client of these advisors or firms. Testimonials may not be representative of other clients’ experiences and do not guarantee future performance or success.

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What would we do without him?

✅ Wealthtender Certified Advisor Review™
Rated 5 out of 5
March 17, 2023

I consider myself very financially literate, but I was getting overwhelmed by the plethora of information out there on how to successfully plan for financial goals and retirement. Stephan took all the guesswork away, created a clear path, and provided much needed reassurance. We look forward to our meetings and are excited to share our progress each time! We always come away with concrete action items and it feels good to take ownership of our plan with his guidance. Thanks so much, Stephan!!

◼ Relationship to Financial Advisor:Current Client
◼ Compensation:This reviewer received no compensation for this review.
◼ Conflicts of Interest:There are no material conflicts of interest.
Avatar for Lindsay

Exactly what I was looking for!

✅ Wealthtender Certified Advisor Review™
Rated 5 out of 5
March 12, 2023

I was looking for an advisor that would give solid advice as my wife and I approach retirement, without conflicts of interest. Stephan has lived up to my high expectations. Concrete advice that is easy to understand, flexibility, availability, and no conflicts of interest. Meets our needs completely.

◼ Relationship to Financial Advisor:Current Client
◼ Compensation:This reviewer received no compensation for this review.
◼ Conflicts of Interest:There are no material conflicts of interest.
Avatar for Sonny Morton, MD
Sonny Morton, MD

Outstanding Fit

✅ Wealthtender Certified Advisor Review™
Rated 5 out of 5
March 11, 2023

Having been with a previous planner a long time, I thought I knew what I wanted. I wanted a mix of coach/cheerleader that let me lead, but who brings expertise and knowledge I lack. Stephan has been that–and MORE! He’s incredibly smart, great human skills, and a subtle and kind desire to help that’s very comforting. This mix of technical savvy and support is an awesome fit for my needs. I like being coached and supported by Stephan and think we’ll be together long term! I certainly hope so.

◼ Relationship to Financial Advisor:Current Client
◼ Compensation:This reviewer received no compensation for this review.
◼ Conflicts of Interest:There are no material conflicts of interest.
Avatar for Jim Sacco
Jim Sacco