Work-A-Holic Going Strong, Growing Business

PAYSON PEOPLE

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Byron Simmons is a self-proclaimed "work-a-holic."

As an insurance agent-turned-senior adviser, a Naval officer-turned-Vietnam vet, the 59-year-old husband, now semi-retired, finds time for his favorite leisure activities while still maintaining his addiction to keeping busy.

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Byron Simmons

"I absolutely love what I do now," Simmons said. "I'm not in an office all day. I do all my work outside and I go to my customers' homes."

As a senior adviser, Simmons works with clients ages 55 and older by teaching educational workshops every month across the Rim country.

He educates seniors on financial planning such as how to protect and build retirement assets, provide alternatives for long-term care, write wills and trusts and plan taxes.

Simmons said that he always finds a way to help his clients.

"Anyone I meet with, we're able to talk and find something I can offer them to help," he said. "We may not do business together, but I'm able to share knowledge with them that hopefully makes their life better."

A Phoenix native, Simmons attended Phoenix College and Arizona State University before joining the Navy in 1966 and shipping off to Vietnam for nine months.

He moved back to Phoenix after the war and joined his father's insurance business before moving to Payson to start his own.

The 32 years he spent in Payson doing business proved successful, but four years ago, the work-a-holic's wife, Kathy, convinced him he was spending too much time working and not enough time enjoying life.

So Simmons sold his business to Payson-area resident Scott Crabdree and began advising seniors half the time. He spends the other half with his family, goes fly fishing, travels and rides horses.

He visited both Alaska and, more recently, Hawaii.

Though Simmons yearns to return to Alaska, a state he claims to have the "best fly fishing in the world," he loves Payson just as much.

"We love the outdoors," he said. "We love the lifestyle and I wanted to raise my children in a small town environment."

Though Simmons is a hard worker, friends and relatives describe him as easy going.

"I can see why he stayed in business as long as he has," said client Blair Ressler, 66. "He's a great listener and he's easy to talk to."

"He's always been a very hard worker," Kathy Simmons said.

"But most of all he loves to be able to be with his family."

Simmons would like to thank his clientele that supported him through the years.

Profile

Name: Byron F. Simmons

Occupation: Senior Adviser

Employer: self-employed under his business Senior Financial Resources

Age: 59

Birthplace: Phoenix

Family: Wife, Kathy, 54, son Jimmy, 33, daughter Kristen, 28, granddaughter Rachel, 16 months, and mother Micky

Personal motto: Share what you have.

Inspiration: Jesus Christ

Greatest feat: That I love my wife and we stayed married 33 years.

My favorite hobby or leisure activity is: Fly fishing.

The three words that describe me best are: Work-a-holic.

I don't want to brag, but: My business has grown beyond my wildest expectations.

The person in history I'd most like to meet is: Mark Twain.

Luxury defined: Laying back in a float tube with a fly rod in my hand.

Dream vacation spot: Alaska. I was lucky enough to spend three days up there, but it wasn't enough. They have the best fly fishing in the world.

Why Payson? There's no better place in Arizona.

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