Mary-Chase Gower is a partner with us here at GCES and is the gasoline in the fuel tank of Wood Family Financial. She keeps the firm running in every area, fulfilling the needs of clients with zeal.
Though she took the last name of her husband and Wood Family Financial co-owner, Evan Gower, she has the Wood family blood. Chase’s grandfather started the firm, eventually bringing in her father and her uncle. She was hired to work for her father at the age of 15, making it her first job and plunging her into the family business.
Chase attended the University of Tennessee, then began to get her footing in the financial industry in 2002. She has since gained 20 years of experience in the field, constantly improving and refining her skills. One of her favorite things about Wood Family Financial is that she has clients who go back three generations. “My grandfather made connections with people, and now we have, not just their children, but their grandchildren as our clients,” she says.
After 20 years, Chase’s favorite parts of her job are the educational side of the financial industry and sharing her expertise with her clients. “The joke used to be, ‘Sign here, press hard, three copies.’ You just didn’t explain things. Now, with the right amount of explanation, people are smart enough to make their own decisions,” she says.
Wood Family Financial specializes in insurance annuities and tax strategies, but Chase loves the relationships she has built with people over the course of her career. “I have hour-long conversations with people about their dogs and their gardens,” she says. She values the financial aspect, but she also believes in the right balance between the business side and the personal side.
Chase isn’t a typical Nashville resident. She is Nashville-born and raised, as were her father and grandfather, so both her geographic roots and her business roots come from her family tree. “I’m a unicorn,” she says. “Anybody who lives in Nashville knows what that means and how uncommon it is.”
Chase and Evan met for the first time in their high school gym class. They began dating when she was a freshman in college, and they have now been married for more than 20 years. “We are like a John Mellencamp song,” Chase laughs.
The two have a son named Van and a daughter named Everleigh, and the four spend all of their time together. When they get a free weekend, they throw their two dachshunds, Gus and Beau, into their 1976 Airstream camper and hit the road to find a nice camping spot near a lake. Some of their favorite places to go are Disney World and Lake Eerie, and Chase has her eyes set on a trip out West in the future.
Each family member is also building a unique collection, and the four make their way to antique malls and estate sales when they travel. “It’s not hoarding,” Chase says. “It’s collecting.” Chase loves the hunt and collects lard containers, stained glass and Pendleton blankets. Her collections are displayed prominently in her home, right alongside Evan’s rarest finds. She also combines her hobbies, upholstering the entire camper with the Pendleton blankets.
At the end of the day, family comes first for Chase. After inheriting her father’s business and becoming a firm partner with her life partner, she continues to keep the Wood family flame alive. The legacy of her father, her grandfather and her uncle are extremely important to her, and she looks forward to maintaining three generations of relationships while also establishing brand new ones alongside her husband. She is excited about Wood Family Financial’s partnership with GCES moving forward.