Our Founder

William A. Oates, Jr.

William A. Oates Jr.

On February 14, 2017 we lost our founder, co-worker and friend, William A. Oates, Jr.

We at Northeast feel fortunate to have known Billy. The corporate history is something of which anyone would be proud. Under his leadership, Northeast Investment Management grew from a small private office into a 22-employee, $1.4 billion investment advisory firm. He brought in new partners and expanded services. He modernized the company and transitioned its technology from “pencil and paper” to a web-based, cloud-hosted, integrated services platform.

Those of us who worked with him knew that the business was always more than a “business” to Billy. For him it was a way to be more engaged in the world. He was a collector, not just of art, books, autographs and porcelain, but of friendships. He was always interested in meeting and making new friends. It didn’t matter where one came from, if you weren’t friends at the start of the business relationship, over time he hoped you would become one.

If you met Billy you know he enjoyed speaking with you about your family, your children, your travels, your problems - all those things mattered to him. Billy rarely left a meeting without learning something new about a person. He listened closely to you and remembered what you said to him about your lives.

Billy’s interests were varied and many. He served as a director of the Colby Art Museum, a trustee of Colby College, a director of The Center at Westwoods, a trustee of The Roxbury Latin School and a trustee of Groton School. Billy was a skier, swimmer, mountain climber, hockey player, golfer, photographer, collector, student and historian. He cast a long shadow.

Those of us to whom Billy entrusted the firm are deeply saddened by his loss but will endeavor to manage Northeast with the same level of enthusiasm, sensitivity and respect as he did. He listened closely and he remembered, we hope to do the same.

As he would often say...