John Wierenga is the Founder and President of Pilgrims Capital Advisors, Inc., a Registered Investment Advisory (RIA) firm that he founded in January of 2002 located just southwest of Grand Rapids, Michigan in the city of Grandville. John is responsible for executing the firm’s business plan, overseeing the company’s operations, and for creating and maintaining all client relationships. He specializes in asset allocation and long term financial planning.
John is a US Naval veteran and started offering investment advice shortly thereafter in June of 1990. His firm specializes in financial planning and asset management, fostering transparent relationships with all clients to ensure the highest standards are met as fiduciaries to both families and retirement plan sponsors.
Just a few years after returning home to Michigan, John started his financial services career as a licensed, captive agent for an insurance company. John then worked as an investment consultant inside Old Kent Bank and Brokerage, where he took and passed the NASD/FINRA licensing examinations, Series 6, 7, 24, 63 & 65. In 1995, he was hired by a national firm to build and manage investment programs inside smaller regional banks expanding to include several states in the Midwest and the South. In late 1997, AmeriBank hired him to build an investment subsidiary. John served as President of AmeriPlan Financial Services through late 2001, overseeing alternative investments through thirty locations. In January of 2002, John started his own independent, fee-only registered investment advisory firm with the State of Michigan.
John is a member of Kingdom Advisors since 2005 and became a Qualified Kingdom Advisor ® in 2007. John earned his Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF®) designation from fi360® in January of 2013 and the Accredited Investment Fiduciary Analyst (AIFA®) in March of 2015. John has also established an agreement with the Centre for Fiduciary Excellence (CEFEX) as a certified analyst to conduct fiduciary assessments of employer-sponsored retirement plans, pension plans and private foundations & trusts. He has also served in his community as board president for two non-profit organizations over the last 10 years.
John and Jill, his bride of 31 years, live in Byron Center, just south of Grand Rapids. John has four grown children with his oldest married. Outside of the office, John enjoys reading and loves experiencing the four full seasons the state of Michigan brings each year by playing golf, gardening in his backyard and taking leisurely walks.
Aaron grew up in West Michigan, attending school and church in Hudsonville. He went on to graduate from Grand Valley State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance in 2015. After graduating college, Aaron decided to start his own business and was involved in the entrepreneurial world until 2021. Shortly thereafter, in the summer of 2021, he joined Pilgrims Capital as Operations Manager where he will assist John in communicating with clients, reviewing and maintaining accounts, and keeping an efficient workplace environment. Aaron anticipates attaining his series 65 license (IAR Investment Advisor Representative) in early 2022.
Aaron and his wife Paige were married in June of 2021 and currently live in Holland. Aaron enjoys staying active and being outdoors by going on walks, playing pickleball, and going to the beach. He also enjoys taking any opportunity to spend time in Northern Michigan’s Leelanau Peninsula.