Our Team

Our Team

Each member of the Flourish team has over 30 years of industry experience.

Michael W. Bakker, CRC®, CPFA®

Managing Partner

Michael joined Flourish Wealth Advisors, part of the Commonwealth Financial Network® in April 2018, after nearly 22 years as a Financial Advisor with Wells Fargo Advisors.  He has achieved a rewarding career in the financial services industry by putting his clients' interests first and providing exceptional personal service. His 30 years of industry experience have taught him how to advise his clients throughout various economic cycles, helping them understand the risks and rewards of investing. He specializes in comprehensive wealth management and assisting retirees and those near retirement with the preservation and growth of their capital. He has earned the Certified Retirement Counselor (CRC®) designation, and the prestigious title of Managing Partner.

Prior to joining a predecessor firm of Wells Fargo Advisors in 1996, Michael spent time working for M&T Securities, Chase Investments and NatWest Investor Services. He was named Rookie of the Year in 1997. Michael graduated from Syracuse University with a Bachelor of Science in Finance. He holds his Series 7, 24, 63 and 65 registrations through Commonwealth Financial Network® in addition to New York, Connecticut, and Florida state life, variable and annuity licenses.

Away from the office, Michael spends his free time with his wife, Cathy, and their daughter Emma. He enjoys outdoor sports and travel. Michael has been competing in triathlons for over fifteen years and completed the Ironman Triathlon World Championship in Kona, Hawaii in 2006.  He has been a USA Triathlon All-American each of the past 11 years.  A lifelong resident of Hudson Valley, Michael is a member of the Hudson Valley Triathlon Club, USA Triathlon, and International Mountain Bike Association. Michael is also a fan of college basketball and the New York Giants.

Michael is very involved in his community. He supports the Challenged Athletes Foundation, American Diabetes Association, March of Dimes, People for Bikes, National MS Society, The Access Fund, and is a member of the Mohonk Preserve.

My Experience

  • 1996 - 2018 : Wells Fargo Advisors, Financial Advisor

My Education & Credentials

  • Bachelor of Science in Finance - Syracuse University

My Areas of Focus

  • Retirement Income Planning
  • Comprehensive Wealth Management
  • IRAs & IRA Strategies
  • Insurance

William A. Dwyer III, CRC®, CPFA®

Managing Partner


William A. Dwyer III, CRC, CPFA

Managing Partner

[email protected]



Bill Dwyer is co-founder of Flourish Wealth Advisors. With more than 35 years of industry experience, he helps to guide his clients to financial security as they approach, transition to and enjoy their fulfilling retirement years. He holds the Series 7, 24, 63 and 65 licenses and is a Certified Retirement Counselor® (CRC®).


Helping local families, couples and individuals plan for the accumulation, distribution and transfer of wealth is something Bill realized was more crucial than ever as employers started to do away with traditional retirement plans, such as pensions. He witnessed how difficult it was for his hard-working neighbors and friends to understand, start saving for and maintain a plan for retirement. Today, he enjoys this niche and seeing clients overcome their apprehensions, start a customized financial plan and savings strategy, and ultimately obtain and sustain their goals and enjoy the fruits of their labor.


Bill grew up in New Rochelle, N.Y., the oldest son among seven children. He enjoyed sports and was an all-county swimmer at New Rochelle High School. He spent nearly 20 years living and working in Manhattan before moving in 2000 to New York’s Hudson Valley to raise his family.


Prior to establishing Flourish Wealth Advisors, Bill spent the previous 18 years with Wells Fargo Advisors, cultivating long-term client relationships. A reputational crisis at the banking arm of his firm in late 2016 made Bill realize the crucial need for independence. That’s when he and his partner Michael Bakker committed themselves to launching their own wealth advisory firm, where they could provide truly impartial holistic advice, unencumbered by the influences of a public parent company. They chose the Commonwealth Financial Network®, a privately held Registered Investment Adviser–independent broker/dealer as their platform, and launched Flourish Wealth Advisors in 2018.


Bill is a past advisory board member of both Putnam SCORE, a small business networking and mentoring program, and the Carmel Central School District Board of Education. 


He lives in Poughquag, N.Y., with his sons Timothy and Michael and their rescue dog Gunner. Together they enjoy the outdoors of the beautiful Hudson Valley—especially playing golf, biking, hiking and fishing—and rooting for all of the New York sports teams.

Stephen J. Wood, CFP®, CRPC®

Senior Wealth Advisor


Steve has lived in the Kingston, New York, area since 1985.  Since then, he has been helping his clients make sound investment choices and build wealth.  Much of his client base is located in the Hudson Valley and greater metro area.  He earned his BS  from Cornell University in 1982.  He has been a Registered Representative since 1985.

Involvement in his community is a high priority for Steve.  His past efforts include serving as president of Rip Van Winkle Boy Scouts of America, work with St. Joseph’s Catholic Church, and Friends of the Senate House.  He has been an enthusiastic fundraiser for the United Way, Ulster Performing Arts, Benedictine Breast Cancer Unit, Devereux Autism Center, Smithsonian Institute, and Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley.  Presently, he is working to promote awareness for People's Place Thrift Store & Food Pantry, People's Place Community Cafe, as well as funding for pediatric cancer research for St. Baldrick's Foundation and Chemo Caps for Kids.

Steve enjoys outdoor activities with his family, such as walking, hiking, biking, kayaking, gardening, and playing catch with his dog, Gracie. He loves to attend cultural and historical activities at Ulster County’s Ancient Order of Hibernians, the Ulster County Historical Association, and the Hurley Heritage Society.


  • 2/2009–2/2019 – Wells Fargo Advisor
  • 8/1997–2/2009 – Merrill Lynch
  • 6/1989–8/1997 – Shearson/Smith Barney
  • 12/1988–2/1989 – First Albany Corporation
  • 7/1985–12/1988 – Merrill Lynch

Education & Credentials

  • Bachelor's of Science – Cornell University 1982
  • Chartered Retirement Planning CounselorSM (CRPC® 

Areas of Focus

  • Wealth Management
  • Retirement Planning
  • Investment Advisor

Community Involvement

  • People's Place Food Pantry & Thrift Store
  • ASK - Art Society of Kingston
  • St. Baldrick's Foundation - Ulster & Greene Counties Chapter
  • Chemo Caps for Kids
  • Ancient Order of Hibernians
  • Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley
  • Ulster County Chamber of Commerce


Maria Barry

Director of Client Services

Maria brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to Flourish Wealth Advisors as the Director of Client Services. She began her career in the financial industry over 30 years ago. She holds her Series 7, 63 and 65 registrations through Commonwealth Financial Network® in addition to her life and annuity license so that she can assist the advisors with their fixed insurance business.

Maria prides herself on her client relationship skills. By building a relationship with the client it gives her a better understanding of their needs. She is there to assist you in any way possible, no question or request is too small or large. Communication is key.

Maria keeps busy outside the office doing volunteer work. She is currently a Trustee for the Ladies Auxiliary Knights of Columbus 6318 in Carmel. She supports Girls Scouts Heart of the Hudson, Boy Scout Troop 440 and the American Cancer Society.

Maria loves to travel her she hopes one of her next few trips will be to see the Northern Lights in Iceland or have chocolate gelato in Italy.

Maria lives in Carmel NY with her husband Pat who is a proud member of the FDNY and their two children Kevin and Grace both college students and their two rescue dogs Bear and Tia.