Zagarola and Hook Named 2018 Five Star Wealth Managers

Darren Zagarola, CFP®, CPA®, PFS® and Howard Hook, CFP®, CPA® are the proud recipients of the 2018 Five Star Professional Wealth Manager Award. Both advisors are multi-year winners.

Selection for this award is based on the Five Star organization's independent client satisfaction research and regulatory review on the performance of service professionals. 15% of New Jersey's wealth managers were nominated for this year's award, with only 4% of those nominees being awarded this badge of honor. Look for the official announcement in the January 2018 issue of New Jersey Monthly magazine (on newsstands in December 2017).

Zagarola and Hook are both partners in Access Wealth Planning, LLC and its affiliate, EKS Associates.

Zagarola has more than 20 years of experience in the financial advisory industry and is an advocate of socially-responsible, values-driven investing. He has been published in The Wall Street Journal, New York Daily News, The New York Times, Financial Advisor magazine, Private Asset Management, Plan Sponsor, Yahoo! Shine, and Redbook magazine; and has also made numerous contributions to the “Local Voices” blog on the He has also appeared on News 12 New Jersey, First Business News TV’s Investing Climate, and Money Radio 1510's Business for Breakfast broadcast. Throughout the year, Darren can be found teaching a variety of financial planning and investment courses at the Princeton Adult School and volunteering his time to discuss financial topics at community and resource centers, non-profit groups and private companies. 

Hook has been providing financial planning, tax planning and investment advisory services for more than 25 years. He frequently writes about and is interviewed by the media on a variety of topics, including financial and retirement planning and tax-efficient investing. He has recently appeared in such publications as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, Fortune magazine, Money magazine, The New York Post, and many other notable publications, both in print and online. In addition, he is a regular contributor to The New York Daily News "Daily Views" online column, as well as to; and is frequently interviewed on local financial news programs. Like Darren, Howard is a recurring educator at the Princeton Adult School and volunteers his time to discuss financial topics at community and resource centers, non-profit groups and private businesses. Howard was also a guest speaker at The Star Ledger’s Annual Road to Personal Wealth Conference twice.

To understand how advisors qualify for this award, click here.