By Alison Bailin Batz
Dillan Micus helps people make money while making a difference in children’s lives
Dillan Micus believes in mentors.
“I was an only child, and my parents divorced when I was really young, which may have very well led to me getting into lots of trouble,” Micus says. “Though I mostly grew up with my mom and stepdad in Denver, I spent a few years with my dad in the South, where I had a lot of idle hours.”
Thankfully, however, he discovered the Brookhaven Boys & Girls Club, and fell in love with its boxing program. “Like so many teen boys, I had excessive energy. The counselors at the club helped me use it in positive ways, both physically and mentally,” says Micus, who would eventually get into football, going so far as to play the sport at the University of Northern Colorado and then for a short time for the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
Post-college, Micus used all that energy in business, quickly rising in the ranks of the financial world. In 2005, he moved to Scottsdale at age 29 to take on the role of executive vice president of AXA Advisors Southwest in the Airpark – the youngest-ever person to earn the role nationwide.
His role with the firm is three-fold. He is involved in recruiting quality associates and developing their skills to enable them to earn the trust and confidence of clients for long-term relationships. He also oversees the actual practice while assisting his own clients in accumulating, distributing and transferring wealth over time. But his favorite role is acting as a mentor for the men and women on his team, both in business and in the community.
For years, Micus has worked diligently on both fronts. In business, he developed a team of similarly young and likeminded financial minds at AXA, quadrupling the firm’s revenue and earning the coveted AXA’s President’s Trophy Award six times in one decade.
“This is an honor awarded annually by AXA Advisors’ national arm and only given when a branch is able to obtain and develop quality associates, grow the firm’s stature in the community, and make significant progress as a financial service,” Micus explains.
Beyond the office and into the community, Micus has perhaps been even more active. Once he settled in the Valley, Micus joined the board of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Scottsdale, bringing his life full circle. He would spend the next decade supporting the mentorship of kids just like him while fundraising for the organization, even hosting several of the organization’s signature events including the Celebrity Golf Invitational and its pre-tournament soirée, Bogies and Stogies.
By 2011, Micus was ready to do more and – along with his team members at AXA – founded the Weekend Jetaway Culinary Casino Classic, a now-annual fall event that raises funds for various child-focused organizations in the community. This year, the event will take place on November 9 on the roof of the W Hotel and will feature small bites by nearly a dozen local restaurants – including SOL Cocina and PNPK in the Airpark – as well as live entertainment and an interactive dice-style game.
“The winner from the night’s dice game will take home a private jet vacation for four to Las Vegas, not to mention helping a great cause,” says Micus, noting this year’s beneficiary is The Challenge Foundation, which helps ambitious and hard-working students break the cycle of poverty through educational opportunities. “Challenge takes a whole-student approach, awarding tuition scholarships and individualized support services to low-income students.”
In addition to his work on Weekend Jetaway and The Challenge Foundation, Micus is also busy with another major event “fore” the kids in Arizona – the 2019 Waste Management Phoenix Open. “In 2013, I was honored to join The Thunderbirds. This year, I am the Pro-Am Chairman for the tournament – we’re looking forward to another successful year,” Micus says.
The Thunderbirds were founded in 1937 with the mission of promoting the Valley of the Sun through sports. “Last year, we had another record year and raised $10.1 million for local charities and have eclipsed $122 million in charitable giving since our inception,” Micus says.
Not bad for a “club” kid with a once-killer left hook.
Dillan Micus is executive vice president of AXA Advisors Southwest in the Airpark.
(Photo courtesy HMA Public Relations)