Joe Deitch has spent his life trying to, as he says, 'create the ideal environment… and then make it better.'
Joe was born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, growing up in Dorchester and Mattapan. He graduated from Boston Latin School in 1968 and attended University of Pennsylvania, where he received a BA in International Relations in 1972.
Following college, Joe traveled to the U.S. Virgin Islands to build upon his education, albeit from a different approach. He spent “two wonderful years” exploring and understanding what is meant by the ideal environment.
Joe later attended Harvard Business School, graduating from the Owner/President Management program in 1989.
Commonwealth Financial Network
In 1979 Joe founded Commonwealth Financial Network (CFN), serving as CEO until becoming Chairman in 2009. Since its inception, CFN has been defined by its commitment to quality, community and ongoing improvement. Today CFN is the nation’s largest privately owned, independent broker/dealer, and has been recognized as a Best Place to Work an unprecedented 32 times by regional and national publications.
In 2006 Joe formed a partnership with longtime close friend David Southworth and became Chairman of Southworth Development, an owner and developer of premier golf and real estate properties in the U.S., Bahamas and Scotland.
Like CFN, Southworth has an overarching focus on quality and community. As a leader in the international golf community, Southworth is committed to creating the ideal environment at each of its properties, all of which have received national and/or international acclaim.
Joe has also dabbled as a Broadway Producer. Serving as principal of Full House Productions, Joe co-produced 9 Broadway productions from 2009 – 2012, including The Addams Family, A View from the Bridge, and Fela. In 2012, Joe won a Tony award as co-producer for The Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess.
Over the years Joe and his companies have received notable accolades and media attention:
- In 2010, Investment Advisor magazine named Joe one of the thirty most influential people in the financial services industry over the previous thirty years.
- JD Power Associates ranked Commonwealth Financial Network #1 in its industry for Client Satisfaction every year the survey has been administered.
- Southworth Development developed the first 18-hole Geo-Certified Course in the UK, ranked #1 as the Top Eco Course in 2012.
- Joe was profiled in the book, Leadership Secrets of the World's Most Successful CEOs: 100 Top Executives Reveal the Management Strategies That Made Their Companies Great (Eric Yaverbaum, Dearborn Trade Publishing, 2004)
Philanthropy plays an increasingly large role in Joe’s life. In addition to founding the Deitch Leadership Institute, his other charitable endeavors include:
- Commonwealth Cares, the philanthropic arm of Commonwealth Financial
- Foundation for an American Vision, a private foundation created in partnership with his late wife
- Tao Jones Foundation
Joe is also an enthusiastic athlete, although “unexceptional” as he admits. In 2002 Joe established the annual Commonwealth Triathlon and designed a course in the beautifully idyllic community of Cataumet, Cape Cod. Joe remains a participant to this day.
These days Joe divides his time between homes in Boston and Miami Beach. His whereabouts are sometimes influenced by weather, sometimes obligated by business, but mostly dictated by wherever Joe finds the ideal environment.