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Peter Newman - Founder and President of Peak Wealth Planning


Peter Newman


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Peter Newman founded Peak Wealth Planning in 2014 to provide bespoke advice to a select group of families. Prior to founding Peak Wealth, Peter managed the treasury and investments at the University of Illinois System for two decades. He also spent 15 years as a real estate investor and developer. As a real estate investor, he learned about minimizing taxes and constructive use of debt.

Peter has experience growing and protecting pools of capital. At the University of Illinois he grew the endowment from $250 million to $700 million and increased operating cash from $700 million to $2.5 billion. From this experience Peter has learned how to create portfolios using unique building blocks (selecting from thousands of managers) to meet specific goals. Peter applies his unique background to help clients achieve their specific goals and enjoy peace of mind.


Peter grew up in an entrepreneurial construction family in the Northeast. He currently resides in Champaign, IL and frequently visits Chicago and Winter Park, CO. Peter enjoys skiing, vegetable gardening, and remodeling homes in unique locations.



Dee Dee Williams

Dee Dee Williams spent 32 years as a higher education administrator, culminating in service as the 8th Secretary of the Board of Trustees and of the University, at the University of Illinois System. Dee Dee provides professional and courteous service to Peak Wealth Planning’s growing client base.

Dee Dee earned a Bachelor's degree in Medical Technology at Eastern Illinois University in 1981 and a Master's degree in Higher Education Administration at the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign in 1999.

When not in the office, Dee Dee enjoys gardening, spending time with her grandchildren, practicing yoga, and occasionally trying her hand at body combat.

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Jami Barkley


Jami Barkley began her career as an accountant after receiving her degree from the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business. In 2010, she started doing tax preparation, eventually earned the EA and ChFC® designations. Her ultimate goal is to gain CFP® certifications and work with clients to achieve their financial goals. 

Jami works behind the scenes of Peak Wealth Planning, assembling plans and analysis of client financial planning.


When she isn’t busy with tax work or planning, Jami enjoys nerding out on publications and podcasts, drinking hot tea, dark chocolate, healthy vegetarian eating, hanging out with her daughters, family, cats and one small dog, Ginger.



Carmen Egolf

Carmen Egolf comes from a background in design and education. For 15 years she worked with clients and more than 1,000 students, identifying their needs and motivations so she could navigate each towards a path of success.


As marketing director for Peak Wealth Planning, Carmen develops marketing strategies, performs research and analysis, and creates media assets and campaigns. Carmen received her M.A. (2009) and B.F.A. (2003) from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

In her free time, Carmen is nurturing her read-aloud channel Storytime Sunshine on YouTube, preserving stories for her son Sebastian as well as his sounds as they read together.

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