Welcome to United Capital Little Rock
Experience wealth management, reimagined.
Get clarity and control over your financial life — and focus on living the life you really want. See how we help you do it.
Jeff KernodleManaging Director
Ben KatonManaging Director
Kara MurphyChief Investment Officer
James OlmoreNational Program Manager
Kendra McKuinDirector of Operations
Shelly MathewsAdministrative Manager
Peter KimIM Advocate
In his third decade in the Financial Services industry, Jeff Kernodle has built a business helping families and individuals pursue the goals that are important to them. Jeff is a Managing Director with United Capital and works in our Nashville, Tennessee and Little Rock, Arkansas offices. Having owned an accounting practice and served as an IRS Enrolled Agent, Jeff is uniquely qualified to understand the complex tax planning needs of our clients.
He advises families, executives, entrepreneurs, throughout the Southeast on all facets of financial and tax planning by charting their financial course with the goal of lifetime wealth creation.
Jeff graduated from Harding University with a degree in accounting. Jeff and his wife have four children. Their oldest son Brett will attend and play baseball at Covenant College in Lookout Mountain, Georgia. Out of the office, you can find Jeff spending time with his family, playing tennis, racquetball, running or enjoying a Cardinals baseball game.
Giving back to his community and charitable organizations has always been a passion of Jeff’s. He served on the board of Searcy Children’s Homes and Crosspointe Preparatory School, has been a member of the Lions Club and is actively involved in organizations that benefit local communities. In the future, he plans to continue working with organizations that support children with troubled backgrounds, adults struggling with financial literacy and youth sports.
Though originally from New Braunfels, Tex., Ben is definitely an Arkansan at heart. He starts every morning with the Razorbacks by catching up on the latest recruitment updates, and has been actively involved in his local community since his graduation from Harding University with an economics degree.
Ben began work in the finance industry over twenty years ago before breaking out with Jeff to launch Kernodle & Katon in 2009, now a Division of United Capital. Their goal was to do more for their clients by taking the financial anxiety from them and into their hands.
When he’s not working with clients or keeping up with the Razorbacks, Ben enjoys golfing as a member of the “Double Digits Club,” a club started by Ben for bad golfers, or participating in his three sons’ various activities including quiz bowl and robotics.
In the past, Ben has been involved with Rotary, the Lions Club, served on the board of CASA of White County and, with Kernodle & Katon, worked to raise funds for Jacob’s Place, the Sunshine School, CASA and Good Samaritan Center of White County. Ben and his wife look forward to working with food banks, the local theater and children’s disabilities programs in the near future.
Kara Murphy, CFA
Chief Investment Officer
What's your dream for the company?
I want us to be the most trusted source of advice on how our money can improve our lives.
What are three words people use to describe you?
Thoughtful, generous, hardworking
When you are not working, what do you care about most?
Hands down, my husband and three rambunctious kids are most important to me.
What's your MoneyMind?
Kara Murphy is a member of the Executive Committee at United Capital, overseeing the Investment Management team including Research, Advocates, and Operations. Her mission is to provide best-in-class investment management expertise, plus innovative strategies and tools. Most recently, she was Chief Investment Officer at SunAmerica Asset Management, LLC, an AIG subsidiary. During her tenure as CIO, assets grew from $28 billion to $50 billion, making SunAmerica one of the fastest-growing asset managers in the industry.
Prior to joining SunAmerica, Kara worked at Chilton Investment Company, a hedge fund, and at Morgan Stanley Investment Management as an analyst researching equities, macroeconomics, and investment strategy. Before joining the investment industry, she was an analyst at Marvin Zonis + Associates with a focus on Eastern Europe and Russia.
Kara is a proud alum of Georgetown University's School of Foreign Service and the University of Chicago. She is a CFA charter-holder, a member of the New York Society of Security Analysts, and a member of the New York Society of Quantitative Analysts. She serves on the board of directors for Grace Outreach, a non-profit organization which provides educational and career training for women in the Bronx, NY. She also started an all-volunteer organization called Welcome Home, which provides support for newly resettled refugees.
James Olmore, CFP®
National Program Manager
At United Capital James is the National Director for the United Capital Referral Program where he is responsible for all new business development, training, reporting and management of the sales teams. His role requires close collaboration with the Investment Management Group, Marketing, Compliance and the Executive Team.
Prior to joining the firm, James was a senior wealth consultant for a large Registered Investment Advisor where he was responsible for business development, financial planning and risk management. James was also a vice president with Fidelity Institutional Wealth Services and provided investment and custody solutions to Family Offices, Banks and Registered Investment Advisors. While at Fidelity, James also held a role as Vice President and Senior Account Executive at Fidelity Investments where he managed client relationships in the Southern California area where he was able to provide services for individual clients and companies that qualified for the Private Client program.
James graduated with my bachelor’s degree from UCLA and have a Master's in Business Administration from the Marshall School at USC. James has also earned his CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation.
When not at work, James is active in his church, the community and volunteers at the school where his children attend.
Director of Operations
Kendra McKuin serves as the Director of Operations for United Capital Financial Advisors with 20 years of operational experience in financial services. Prior to joining United Capital, she served with Kernodle & Katon Tax and Asset Management Group as an Investment Adviser Representative and Client Relationship Manager, where she was in charge of the operational oversight, trading, planning and compliance. Her focus is on developing a caring culture, both with the other team members and with our clients. Kendra plays an active role in working directly with the clients of United Capital of Nashville and Little Rock to provide a link between them and the advisers of our firm. She provides support through ongoing contact and project management. Her specialties include having detailed knowledge of the specifics involved in each one of our client situations. This provides our team the ability to deliver timely, accurate and holistic wealth counseling that ultimately may help our clients make decisions that will allow them to live their One Best Financial Life®.
As an important member of the United Capital of Nashville, Little Rock team, Shelly Mathews works with our clients through ongoing contact to help offer superior operational support. Her primary goal is to provide top-notch service so that our clients can have a peace of mind that the United Capital family is here to support theirs. She assists the Director of Operations in all aspects of the administration and execution of the specific needs of each client, providing quality and timely responses to inquiries and resolutions. She is the first point of contact of both current and prospective clients. She coordinates and schedules client meetings for the Managing Directors. She strives to provide a high standard of support to our clients through accuracy and efficiency.
- Director of Operations, United Capital North Wales, North Wales, PA
- Director of Operations, First Senior Financial Group, King of Prussia, PA
- Financial Analyst, later Executive Financial Analyst, First Senior Group, King of Prussia, PA
- Regional Vice President, Penn Street Funds, Inc., Wyomissing, PA
- Financial Advisor, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner and Smith
- BA, Economics, Bucknell University
- Aveta Business Institute, Lean Six Sigma Green Belt, 2015
- Level 2 CFA® Candidate
Licenses: Series 65, Life and Health Insurance: PA, NJ, DE, FL, CA, NY – LTC Certified
Began Career in 2005
Peter is a member of the United Capital investment management team, where he serves as an IM Advocate for over twenty offices. With an extensive background in finance and operational management, he applies his skills to educating regional offices on using the United Capital Investment Platform and associated software tools efficiently and effectively.
Previously, he served as Director of Operations (DOO) at United Capital’s North Wales office where he oversaw daily operations of the local office, strategic business development and investment management. He also served as relationship manager for institutional and investment focused clients and created client correspondence for quarterly market updates and impacts on local investment models. He served as a member of the Investment Platform Advisory Council, which was tasked with providing oversight of and feedback on United Capital’s national investment platform.
Previously, Peter progressively served as Financial Analyst, Executive Financial Analyst, and then DOO at First Senior Financial Group, an insurance firm focused on principal protection and estate creation with $1.8 billion in assets. As DOO, he oversaw daily operations of the company and strategic business development and was credited with increasing efficiency by over 50% for both advisors and staff.
Earlier, Peter worked at Penn Street Funds, a start–up mutual fund company specializing in quantitative strategies that focused on large–cap companies. The last fund they launched eventually sold to MFS and became the MFS Sector Rotation Fund.
Peter began his career in 2005 at Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner and Smith where he graduated out of their POA program as a financial advisor in their Princeton, NJ office.
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12511 Cantrell Road
Little Rock, AR 72223
We are also located in Searcy, AR at:
515 S. Main St.
Searcy, AR 72143
As well as Nashville, TN at:
2550 meridian Blvd, Suite 200
Franklin, TN 37067
*Award not indicative of investment performance.