Our History - 100 Years in the Making
As Rochester's oldest, locally owned financial services firm, we are proud to count a number of second and even third generation clients among those we serve. Today, Sage Rutty is one of the oldest in the nation - a sound testament not only to the firm's stability during times of uncertainty, but also our superior standards of client service.
Sage Wolcott & Steele opened its doors June 3, 1915 to transact business in high grade municipal, railroad, and industrial bonds. The company also traded local securities. From the beginning, bonds were an integral part of the business and today, the succeeding company is the only Rochester securities firm still maintaining a bond-trading department. Frank Sage, Charles Wolcott, and Samuel Steele founded the company with offices in the Wilder Building located in downtown Rochester. Each of the founders had extensive experience in banking, insurance, and other financial endeavors.
In 1919, David Rutty joined the firm having worked with a New York City securities firm. An office was added to accommodate Mr. Rutty-the first of five expansions for the firm. In 1927, Wilbur Holly joined the firm just in time to experience the Great Depression. Mr. Wolcott retired in 1936 and on January 1, 1937, the firm of Sage Rutty & Co., Inc. was formed and continues to this day. The firm moved to the Times Square Building in 1939 to accommodate their growing staff. Wilbur Holly's son, William, joined the firm in 1955, and Wilbur's younger son, Donald, joined in 1957. Frank Sage died in 1958 and David Rutty passed away in 1972. Wilbur Holly purchased Mr. Rutty's interest in Sage Rutty and became sole owner until his death in 1977. With Wilbur Holly's death, his two sons, William and Donald, purchased the firm from the Holly Estate. William became Chairman and Don was named President. Bill's son, Wayne, joined the firm in 1979. Don retired in 1986 and his interests were sold to William Holly.
In 1987, the firm expanded with the opening of a branch office in Canandaigua, New York, just south of Rochester. In 1988, a seat on the Boston Stock Exchange was acquired and a year later the firm moved to the Lincoln Alliance building to accommodate further expansion. Wayne Holly was elected President and Chief Operating Officer in 1993. William Holly relinquished the Chairmanship of the firm to Wayne Holly in 2004.
Throughout recent years, the firm has continued to add brokers and other financial team members and has significantly expanded its services to include a full range of financial planning, wealth management, and insurance offerings.
Over the last 100+ years, Sage Rutty & Co., Inc. has weathered volatile periods like the market crashes of 1929,1987, and the financial crisis of 2008. The company has continued to grow and prosper by meeting client needs in a quiet, conservative, and trustworthy manner.
"My father, and my grandfather before him, established a tradition I am dedicated to maintaining now that the management of the firm has passed to me. Today, just as in the past, we remain focused on a single, all-important mission: Creating and Preserving Wealth for Generations."
Wayne F. Holly
Chairman & President