Baird has hired Karen Heintz as a branch manager for its Edina, Minn., office.

In her new post, she will help to build out the firm’s presence in the region, starting with the eight advisors in the Edina office.

“It’s an effort to expand our presence in the twin cities,” Erik Dahlberg, regional director for the private wealth management group at Baird, said in a phone interview. “It’s something we’ve been committed to. Her focus to start will be Edina, but we’re hoping we can pursue other opportunities in the city as they become available.”

According to Dahlberg, the city is attractive because of the “Midwestern culture and worth ethic” and he sees potential for growth given Baird’s position as an employee-owned firm.

“All the big firms are here. The opportunity that we see is that a lot of the regional folks here with regional backgrounds, those firms are gone,” Dahlberg explained. “Piper’s obviously gone. Dain was purchased by Royal Bank of Canada. A couple major regional firms here have been sold. So we see that there’s a lot of Midwestern culture and work ethic that really would enjoy the opportunity to work again for an employee-owned firm.”

Heintz, who been in the industry for around two decades according to Baird, was formerly a branch manager at UBS in St. Paul, Minn., where she oversaw 24 financial advisors managing $3.1 billion in assets.