Meet the PAG team. Our team members are deeply principled, devoted to serving others, and committed to helping independent advisors, investors, and RIA firms thrive and grow.
Director, Advisor Advocacy
Guy is the Director of Advisor Advocacy and Chief Market Strategist at Private Advisor Group, and he provides meaningful guidance and support to advisors considering the independent business model. He is also one of the original “Fast Money Five” on CNBC’s Fast Money. Prior to joining PAG in 2014, Guy held numerous key leadership roles at major firms within the financial services industry, including Goldman Sachs and CIBC World Markets.
“The team here at PAG are some of the best in the business. They are steeped in a belief that ethics and integrity come first in everything we do. Our advisors and clients are treated like family, and that is why we have some of the most loyal advisors in the industry.”
Born and raised in New York, Guy now resides with his wife and three children in Morristown, New Jersey. Outside of the office, he enjoys spending time with his family.
BS in Business, Georgetown University
Chief Financial Officer
Petra brings more than 30 years of accounting experience to her role as Chief Financial Officer (CFO). As the CFO, Petra has the primary responsibility for managing PAG’s finances, outside custodial fee billing, and advisor compensation. After a successful career at Coopers & Lybrand, Häagen Dazs, and various consulting projects, Petra joined Private Advisor Group in 2011, serving as Director, Accounting and Advisor Compensation before being promoted to CFO.
“Advisors should be able to enjoy all the rewards that come with independence – including their compensation,” she says. “We want them to be paid accurately and on time, every time. If they have an issue with a fee or payout from a financial institution, they know we will do whatever it takes to help them resolve the matter to their fullest satisfaction.”
Petra lives with her husband and two daughters in Morristown, New Jersey, where she is an active volunteer in her community. She has chaired several secondary school committees and eagerly signs up to help PAG and Invest in Others with their community outreach projects, including volunteering at the Community Soup Kitchen of Morristown and participating in Good Grief walks.
BS in Accounting, Rutgers University
CPA (inactive), State of New Jersey
Ira Berkowitz joined Private Advisor Group in January 2003, bringing with him a somewhat nontraditional background as a financial consultant. After a successful 27-year career within a division of a Fortune 500 company, Ira decided to utilize his many years of experience as an individual investor to help others. He began his career transition by joining Morgan Stanley as a financial advisor in 1999. After ranking at the top of his training class for over three years, Ira brought his talents to Private Advisor Group.
Ira’s varied client base ranges from young individuals and families who are just getting started to executives and business owners nearing or in retirement. Ira specializes in education planning, advising parents and grandparents on preparing for college expenditures in a climate where education costs continue to climb. He also focuses on individual municipal and corporate bonds, equities and exchange-traded funds, and mutual funds, recommending independent money managers as appropriate.
Ira earned a BS in finance from Indiana University. As a General Securities Registered Representative, he holds the Series 7, Series 31 and Series 66 FINRA registrations held through LPL Financial. He is also licensed to sell and advise clients on life, health and long-term care insurance.
Ira resides in Livingston, New Jersey. He and his wife have successfully negotiated the education hurdle for themselves and their two children, with their family having earned a total of eight degrees and expecting a ninth degree in medicine in the spring of 2014. A good education is the most important thing a parent can give a child, and Ira believes this can be accomplished multigenerationally with very early planning and continued focus throughout the years. In addition to their educational achievements, Ira and his family are all trying to learn how to play golf—with varying degrees of success—as well as practicing Yoga to maintain a healthy life balance.
Tim is a transition specialist and leverages his extensive background in software engineering to help new advisors learn and apply the latest technology as well as transition their books to PAG. He joined Private Advisor Group as a member of the transitions team in 2012.
“Teaching others how to do new things really gets at the heart of what motivates me,” he says, “and it’s very satisfying to know that the work I do helps ensure advisors can have a quick and easy transition experience. I want them to feel confident in their decision to go independent, and learning how to use our technology stack is a key element to that.”
Tim lives in Morris Township, New Jersey, with his wife and two children. Outside of work, he supports his community through music and volunteerism. In addition to playing bagpipes in a local bagpipe and drum band, he has served as a volunteer firefighter for more than 30 years.
AAS in Computer Graphics Technology, Alfred State College
Thomas Campana, CFP® is a Financial Advisor with Private Advisor Group. Thomas began his career in 2007 with the Bleakley Financial Group, which later merged with Private Advisor Group in 2015. Thomas’ mission is simple: to develop enduring relationships by providing expert financial guidance for a lifetime of financial security.
Thomas resides in Weehawken, NJ. When he is not working, Thomas enjoys spending time with his family, skiing, recreational flying, and donating as much time as possible to various organizations, such as Big Brothers Big Sisters of America.
Insurance licenses include Life, Health, Long-Term Care
Client Services Associate
Nick Carrion is a client services associate at Private Advisor Group and assists new advisors with their transitions. He joined the business in 2018 after an internship enabled him to work with multiple departments to find his niche. Upon graduating, Nick intends to pursue his Series 7 and 66 licenses to become a financial advisor.
“Working at PAG is an incredibly supportive experience,” he says, “and we’re as committed to helping each other grow as we are to our advisors and their clients. It makes me really excited for what my future with the business looks like.”
Nick lives in Morristown, New Jersey, where he continually seeks new ways to give back to his community. Recently, Nick became involved with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society after PAG co-founder John Hyland helped connect him with the right people to start making a difference. He is an active fundraiser for the organization, the team captain for their “Light the Night” campaign, and a member of their Relentless Committee.
BS in Business, Penn State University (in progress)
LPL Registered Principal, Financial Advisor
Kyle is an LPL registered principal wherein he is responsible for managing client relationships, financial and retirement planning, investment management, and insurance planning. He joined Private Advisor Group in 2011 as a member of the transition team and has since been rotated through various roles in compliance, operations, and business development.
“At Private Advisor Group, I can be a true fiduciary to our clients,” he says. “I take the time to understand their current financial situation, how they got there, and where they want to be. The independent nature of our organization also allows me the added freedom and flexibility to seek out their very best options to achieve their financial goals. It’s very rewarding.”
Kyle resides with his wife in Basking Ridge, New Jersey. He enjoys spending much of his time outdoors, including fly-fishing and skiing, as well as supporting his community. As a member of the Board of Trustees at Preschool Advantage, he helps raise funds to provide tuition for children from low income families, enabling them to receive a quality preschool education.
In his role as financial advisor with Private Advisor Group, Paul Colwell serves a diverse range of clients, from professionals, executives and small business owners to those nearing or enjoying retirement. While each of these groups has its own unique financial concerns, Paul’s approach is always the same. He spends time getting to know each of his clients in order to gain a full understanding of their current financial picture, immediate concerns and future objectives.
A significant portion of Paul’s job involves managing his clients’ wealth in order to help them pursue their life goals. Paul aims to design investment plans that will enable his clients to stay invested under any market conditions. Through the ongoing monitoring of clients’ circumstances, portfolio mix and manager performance, Paul strives to keep them on track as they pursue their financial planning objectives.
Paul has over 30 years of professional experience in financial-related business activities, including time spent in the public and private accounting field, commercial lending to middle-market businesses and providing property and casualty insurance services to this marketplace. Paul joined Morgan Stanley as a financial advisor in 1997, where he finished in the top quartile of his training class in each of his first three years and was the first advisor in his office in five years to earn the National Sales Director’s Award.
Paul earned a BSBA in accounting from Boston University. As a General Securities Registered Representative, he holds the Series 7, 63, 65 and 31 FINRA registrations through LPL Financial. He is also licensed to advise and sell clients life, disability, long-term care and variable insurance products.
Paul and his family have resided in Madison, NJ, for the last 20 years. Outside of the office, he enjoys sharing his free time with family and friends, either relaxing on the beach in Cape Cod or exploring the lakes and mountains of Vermont and New Hampshire. Paul is an avid player of golf, tennis and platform tennis and also enjoys watching almost any sporting event, especially football and hockey.
Chief Information Officer and Chief Information Security Officer
Phil joined Private Advisor Group in 2021 as Chief Information Officer and Chief Information Security Officer. In this role, he provides expertise and operational strength to PAG’s expanding portfolio of technology solutions.
“PAG’s best-in-class, patent-pending compliance software and technology platform drove me to seek an opportunity here,” said Phil. “I’m looking forward to making a significant contribution to further accelerate the firm’s growth trajectory as a destination of choice for top-performing advisors across the country. It’s my objective to strengthen our technology offerings and information security architecture as we adopt new solutions that add operational efficiency, investment proficiency, and value for our advisors and clients across the country.”
Prior to joining PAG, Phil was Chief Information Security Officer and Director of Fund Operations at International Value Advisers, where he managed the strategy and execution of both disciplines at the firm during its rocket ship growth. In his early career, Phil worked his way up the ranks at Morgan Stanley.
Phil resides in Pequannock, NJ with his wife and two children. In his free time, he enjoys weight lifting and running, and he is also a member of Infragard, a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and members of the private sector for the protection of U.S. Critical Infrastructure.
Senior Wealth Manager
Tom Corcimiglia CFP®, MBA has been with Private Advisor Group since 2011 and currently manages our Philadelphia office. Tom is a Senior Wealth Manager / Partner and has 20 plus years of extensive financial service experience, which includes working with the Asset Management and Trust group of a top mutual fund family, the Private Client Group of a leading investment bank, in the role of Vice President of Wealth Management for a National Bank, and as past partner at The Philadelphia Group.
Tom is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ Practitioner. He earned his Bachelor of Science in Economics from the State University of New York, his MBA from Penn State, and did his CFP® coursework at The American College in Bryn Mawr, PA.
Tom attends Christ Community Church, is on the Board of Trustees of Delaware County Christian School, enjoys golf at Applebrook Golf Club and resides in West Chester, PA, with his wife Natalie, and his children Clay, Nathan, Sky and Sam.
Operations Project Manager
Lou D’Angelo joined Private Advisor Group in 2021 as an Operations Project Manager. Lou brings strong attention to detail, operational efficiency, and a strategic mindset as he builds out firm metrics to monitor and enhance the growth of the business. Lou began his career at Ernst & Young as a Financial Services consultant, and he was the project manager for the global Legal and Corporate Affairs office of Anheuser-Busch InBev prior to joining PAG. Lou’s goal is to complete his Series 7 and 66 licensing exams to become a financial advisor.
“There is ample room for growth at PAG,” says Lou, “and I am excited to make an impact in the reporting metrics that will lead to broader company success.”
Lou lives with his wife in North Bergen, New Jersey where he currently sits on the Board of Directors as Treasurer for his condominium. He volunteers extensively for various local and global charities, including fundraising initiatives for the Fund for Armenian Relief. In his free time, Lou plays the drums in a band with his brother and enjoys golfing, skiing, and hiking.
BS in Finance, Fordham University
Registrations held with LPL Financial:
Life and Health Insurance
Client Services Associate
Sean is a transition specialist and client services representative at Private Advisor Group. With an emphasis on regular communications from start to finish, he helps new advisors transition to become independent. Sean joined PAG as a client services associate in 2019 after proving out a successful internship the previous year.
“I feel very fortunate to work for PAG because the company invests so much in its own employees’ development,” he says. “Having the encouragement to keep learning and growing inspires us to work hard – and that’s a big part of what enables us to provide such exceptional service to our clients.”
Sean lives in Morristown, New Jersey, and enjoys volunteering and being outdoors in his free time. In addition to helping PAG and Invest in Others with their community outreach projects, he has donated his time to Habitat for Humanity. He also spends his weekends playing golf, riding his bicycle, and visiting the Adirondacks.
BA in Business Administration, Catholic University of America
Will is an experienced Wealth Manager with over 10 years of experience. He enjoys working with clients of all walks of life from emerging affluent, high net worth to institutional. He values the long-term relationships he can build with his clients and particularly enjoys developing personalized investment plans for each client.
Previously, Will has worked as a Chief Investment Officer and Portfolio Manager managing over 100 million in assets on a discretionary basis. Will invests with an accredited investor mindset and personally invests alongside client portfolios. He has also earned the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation and builds custom plans for his clients to meet all their financial goals.
Will grew up in the Metro St. Louis. He resides in Columbia, IL with his wife Kate. They have two young children, Charlotte and Amelia. When he is not working alongside his clients, he enjoys coaching, attending his kid’s events. Additionally, Will enjoys hiking, grilling, and eating out with all his friends and family.
Michael P. Desaulnier joined Private Advisor Group as an investment advisor representative in June 2012. Michael’s commitment to full service and clear communication helps him to build a strong foundation of trust with clients, and he maintains that trust by providing custom-tailored and tax-managed financial planning strategies to meet their unique needs and objectives.
Michael holds a BA in economics and history from Washington & Lee University and an MBA in finance from Fordham University. He began his career in the financial services industry as a financial consultant with Ryan Beck & Co., then served as a financial advisor associate with Stifel, Nicolaus & Co., Inc., before joining Private Advisor Group. Michael is a registered representative of LPL Financial and holds the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) and Enrolled Agent designations.
Michael resides in Rockaway, NJ, with his wife and their two daughters, ages 10 and 5. In his ever-dwindling free time, he enjoys reading, exercising and coaching track and girls basketball for Rockaway Township.
Robert J. DiTrani Jr. joined Private Advisor Group as an investment advisor representative in June 2012. In his role as a full-service financial advisor, Robert maintains a strong commitment to education and communication, helping his clients keep their objectives in focus through market fluctuations and life transitions.
Robert earned a BS in finance from Rutgers University in 2004. He began his career in the financial services industry as a client service associate with Ryan Beck & Co., then served as a registered client service associate with Stifel, Nicolaus & Co., Inc., before joining Private Advisor Group. Robert is a registered representative of LPL Financial and holds the CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) and Chartered Market Technician® designations.
Robert currently resides in Livingston, NJ with his wife, Kate and daughters, Kendall and Caroline. Outside of the office he enjoys spending time with family and friends.
Jules is a compliance liaison responsible for helping advisors navigate audit processes and other complex compliance requirements. She joined Private Advisor Group in 2009 as an administrative assistant and earned promotions into her current position.
“In the world of independent advising, it’s easy to feel lost when it comes to compliance,” she says, “but that’s why roles like mine exist at PAG. I’m here to be an ally and advocate when advisors need direction or help with resolving an issue. There’s no better feeling than helping our advisors overcome a challenge.”
Outside of work, Jules is an avid reader and woodturner. She is especially passionate about travel and, prior to joining PAG, spent three years in Hawaii as well as a year living abroad in Sicily. A native Midwesterner, Julie moved to New Jersey in 2009 and currently resides in Highland Lakes.
Warren’s background over the past 25 years include Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley. His practice focuses on helping clients avoid the common mistakes made by most investors and he explains how he has counseled hundreds to avoid these pitfalls. His clients include retired government employees, retired teachers, business owners, physicians, corporate executives, and more.
William Hart brings a background in institutional sales to his role as financial advisor with Private Advisor Group. Bill’s institutional experience offers his clients a valuable perspective on the process of managing their wealth. His philosophy is based on a belief in predictability as a result of a systematic and clearly defined investment process. To eliminate any surprises for his clients, he emphasizes consistent follow-up and periodic review.
Bill graduated from Montclair State University and began his career in the financial services industry with Merrill Lynch. He spent 24 years with AG Edwards & Sons, achieving both President’s and Chairman’s Council recognition levels. Bill’s experience includes working with banks, insurance companies, corporations, institutional money managers and individuals.
Bill resides in New Providence, NJ, with his wife, Katie, and their three daughters. He has coached youth sports and spent over a decade involved in the YMCA’s Indian Princess Program. Bill also volunteers with the Morris County Interfaith homeless program, which provides short-term shelter and support to women with families who need a helping hand in difficult times.
Relationship Manager – Recruiting
Karen is the Relationship Manager at Private Advisor Group. She is responsible for identifying and recruiting qualified, experienced advisors who are interested in going independent or changing their affiliation in order to grow their practice. After joining the business in 2014, she progressed to her current role from the marketing department.
“Going independent doesn’t mean you have to go it alone,” she says, “and when advisors are ready to initiate their transition, I want them to feel empowered with the knowledge that PAG is there for them every step of the way. My job is to steer them toward the path to growth by figuring out which is the best platform to meet their needs and providing resources to maximize their growth. From the initial call to the successful transition, I am there to welcome them to the PAG family.”
Karen lives with her husband and four sons in Chatham, New Jersey. Outside of work, she enjoys nurturing people in a different way: through her culinary skills. After owning and operating her own restaurant for years, Karen now spends her free time cooking for family and friends. She also volunteers her culinary skills at her community’s soup kitchen, serves on the Good Grief annual gala committee, and has participated in numerous fundraising events in her school district.
BS in Business Management, Green Mountain College
Managing Director, Chief Compliance Officer
Jim is a proven leader in Compliance with an entrepreneurial mindset to manage risk and drive value for advisors and their clients through innovation, strategic planning, and continuous process improvement. He joined Private Advisor Group in 2019 after holding executive-level and leadership roles for more than 30 years in the financial services industry. Most recently, he had been the Senior Vice President of Compliance, Legal, and Risk at LPL Financial.
“There are different ways to build an independent advisory business,” he says, “and, at PAG, we work with each advisor individually to understand their goals and help them build the business that they want. Providing compliance support is a huge part of this because, when they have the guidance and technology to remain compliant as regulations change, they have more time to focus on doing what it takes to grow successfully – and that’s serving their clients.”
A natural mentor, Jim is adept at developing knowledgeable, motivated, and productive teams that share his passion for results, and he enjoys helping advisors navigate the complexities of compliance. During his 14-year tenure with LPL Financial, he was responsible for leading the creation and management of a comprehensive branch exam program that enabled a team of more than 100 employees to appropriately identify and manage risk. Thankful advisors frequently passed along their compliments on the new approach.
Prior to his time at LPL Financial, Jim had spent 18 years progressing through the ranks at Raymond James, where he ultimately served as Vice President of Compliance and had broad responsibilities for the company’s compliance program.
Outside of work, Jim is a member of the National Society of Compliance Professionals (NSCP), where he participates on panels and serves as a resource for peers throughout the industry. He also follows a philanthropic lifestyle and has served on the Board of the LPL Financial Foundation as well as the Allocations Committee at United Way.
Jim lives with his wife and teenage daughter near Charlotte, North Carolina. He enjoys spending time with his family, jogging and traveling to the beach and mountains.
Co-Founder, Managing Director
John is one of the co-founders of Private Advisor Group and brings nearly three decades of financial services industry experience to his role as managing director. An accomplished financial advisor with an inspiring backstory, John’s expertise lies in helping other advisors realize their dreams of building a successful independent advisory practice. He frequently speaks on the topics of business strategy, industry outlook, and one of the most sought-after topics, the value of perseverance.
“Our model is to help our advisors grow, whether they want to grow organically, join forces with another advisor, or acquire business,” he says. “And, if they eventually want to go out on their own separate from our firm, we support that too. We’ve been there and want to support them as entrepreneurs and financial advisors.”
Doing what is right for the client has always been a driving force behind John’s career, which began in 1990 with American Express Financial Advisors, where he focused on retirement and estate preservation planning and asset management. As he ascended through the ranks, however, John found himself attracted to the independent business model; he longed to provide his clients with a wider choice of investment products and services.
Determined to bring his vision to life, John partnered with Pat Sullivan late 1997 to create the Morristown Financial Group. Shortly afterward, as it became apparent to the pair that independent advisors needed a way to become more efficient with compliance, Private Advisor Group was born.
Outside of work, John is actively involved in his community and philanthropy. After losing his aunt to AML, an acute form of leukemia, John became an avid supporter of nonprofits. He is a trustee with the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and past president of the board for the Leukemia Society of New Jersey. He has served as Grand Marshall and the major gifts finance chairman of the Morris County St. Patrick’s Day Parade; chaired the finance committee as a member of the Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey’s board of trustees; and is an active member of the board for the Mayo Performing Arts Center. He also supports the advisor community by serving as a board member of Invest in Others charitable organization.
In all his pursuits, John is known for his rare brand of optimism as well his unshakable ambition to persevere. He is an accomplished marathon runner and triathlete who, in addition to having run in the New York Marathon, has completed the Ironman triathlon eleven times since 2000. He has also beaten AML, the same cancer that took his aunt, into remission three times since receiving his own diagnosis in 2010 – an inspiring story that can be found on the cover of Real Assets Adviser magazine.
John is a lifelong resident of Morristown, New Jersey, where he lives with his wife and three children.
Client Service Associate
Austin is a client services associate at Private Advisor Group, and he is responsible for supporting the firm’s custodian and technology partners. He joined the business in 2020.
“I’m really driven by results,” he said, “as is everyone in the PAG family. I love being part of such a smart, mindful, and encouraging group of people. Everyone here is committed to going above and beyond to help others and give back.”
Austin lives in Jackson, New Jersey, where he spends his free time helping to build a more inclusive community for people living with disabilities. He is an active volunteer with the Ability Experience and Miracle League organizations and especially enjoys service projects where he can renovate and construct accessible recreation facilities.
BS in Business Administration, High Point University
Fill Macias is a Billing Associate at Private Advisor Group, and is responsible for posting, collecting, researching, and managing accounts within the billing system, and assisting with problem analysis and resolution.
“I constantly seek to get better even if it is 1% a day,” says Fill. “Being part of a company that not only has a great work culture but is constantly reinvesting in its business model and adding greater efficiencies all while still giving back and serving the community, has me that much more excited to grow with the company.”
Fill lives in Elizabeth, NJ and outside of work he enjoys hitting the gym and working towards a black belt in Brazilian Jujitsu. Some of his future goals are to get more involved within the community and to become a big brother mentor.
BS in Accounting, Kean University
Director of Business Development
Verne joined Private Advisor Group in 2021 as Director of Business Development. In this role, he leads the development and implementation of PAG’s national strategy for new advisor business growth.
“The industry is evolving rapidly, undergoing not only consolidation but a shift toward independence,” he says. “The unique aspect of PAG is our ability to help advisors navigate these changes, while simultaneously affording them the benefit of our collective experience, size, and scale, through a variety of independent affiliation models. Even though change may be daunting, advisors can feel confident that they will be fully supported in all aspects of their business by the PAG team.”
Prior to joining Private Advisor Group, Verne spent 12 years at LPL Financial, where he served first as the Senior Vice President of Advisory Consulting and, later, as the Senior Vice President and Divisional Manager of Business Development. He also held leadership roles at Edelman Financial Engines and SEI Investments. His entire professional career has been in service to independent advisors, helping them to improve outcomes for both their businesses and their clients.
A proud veteran of the United States Navy, Verne served as a Surface Warfare Officer (SWO) aboard USS Niagara Falls (AFS-3) and as the Staff Readiness Officer for the Commander, Naval Surfaces Forces, Pacific Fleet. He resides in Overland Park, KS, with his wife, children, and numerous dogs and cats. During his down time, Verne enjoys spending time with the family, working out in the mornings, honing his culinary skills on his Big Green Egg outdoor cooker, and cheering on his local Kansas City sports teams and beloved Kentucky Wildcats.
LPL Registered Principal, Compliance Specialist
Klaudia is a compliance specialist and helps advisors follow the policies and procedures outlined by both PAG and LPL Financial. She joined Private Advisor Group as a sales assistant in 2004 and has since held roles in client administrative support, advisor onboarding, and operations.
“I’ve worn a lot of hats at PAG, but compliance is where I’ve found my true calling,” she says. “I think it’s because I embrace change – and, in an industry that never stops changing, advisors need someone who will be their compass. Like the rest of my colleagues at PAG, I’m here to help our advisors navigate regulatory change. We’re here to listen, guide, support, and educate so they can continue to grow successfully.”
Klaudia came to the U.S. from Poland, where as a young woman she earned several top rankings in national track and field competitions. Today, she lives in Summerfield, Florida, and continues to lead an active lifestyle. She enjoys bicycling, running, hiking, and camping with her husband.
Jason brings more than 20 years of industry experience to his role as Compliance Director at Private Advisor Group. Prior to joining the business in 2019, he had served as Vice President of Governance and Reporting at Raymond James, where he created a comprehensive supervisory oversight program to appropriately identify and manage risk. Before that, he spent 14 years ascending through various leadership positions at LPL Financial.
“Compliance doesn’t have to be intimidating,” he says. “It’s important to me – and to all of us at PAG – that advisors feel confident in their independence, so we aim to make it easier to follow the rules, even as regulations change.”
Born and raised in New Jersey, Jason now lives in Florida with his wife and two children. Outside of work, he and his family enjoy giving back to their community by volunteering at local food banks, shelters, schools, and their church.
Chief Executive Officer
R.J. brings over three decades of financial services industry experience and executive leadership to his role as CEO. A passionate advocate for advisors and the end client experience, R.J. has been at the forefront of innovation and transformation across the profession.
“Private Advisor Group is perfectly positioned to partner with advisors who are seeking to lead their profession in the highest quality relationships with clients while maintaining an impeccable reputation,” he said. “Our entire team is dedicated to serving advisors and end clients through deep experience, cutting edge integrated technology, renowned compliance, and tailored personal relationships.”
R.J. previously served as CEO of Cetera Financial Group, CEO of Legal & General Investment Management America, and CEO of ABN AMRO La Salle Bank. He was also President of LPL Financial. R.J. holds the CFA designation and has extensive experience as an investment professional.
Outside of work, R.J. has a wide range of interests. He is the former Chair of Invest in Others, and previously served on the Boards of The Chicago Shakespeare Theater, Chicago Historical Society, and Jane Addams Hull House. In San Diego, R.J. is an ardent supporter of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the Navy Seal NSW Family Foundation.
Born and raised in Texas, R.J. now resides with his wife in San Diego and enjoys visiting his four children who live across the U.S. He is an avid boater and reader of Historical Biographies.
John J. Murphy joined Private Advisor Group as a partner in 2003, after spending most of his career as a financial advisor with Merrill Lynch. John‘s practice focuses on advising small businesses on employee benefits and providing individuals with wealth management and long-term financial planning.
John has been active in the financial services industry since graduating from Gettysburg College in 1981. As a General Securities Registered Representative with LPL Financial, he holds the Series 7, Series 31 and Series 63 licenses. He is also licensed to advise clients on life insurance, health insurance and variable annuities.
John resides in Morris Township with his wife, Jennifer, and their four children. He stays actively involved in his community by participating in numerous civic activities, including serving as a volunteer fireman and engaging youth through sports programs. In addition, John has held numerous elected and appointed positions, including two terms as the mayor of Morris Township and serving as an elected member of the Morris County Board of Chosen Freeholders since 1998. He ran for governor of New Jersey in the 2005 Republican Primary and placed a respectable third in a crowded field of seven.
Jim is a managing director at Private Advisor Group and has been with the firm since its infancy. Since 2001, he has ascended through the ranks to his current position and, over the years, has played a vital role in the development and ongoing success of the business. Also a registered principal with LPL Financial, Jim leverages his long tenure with both organizations to help advisors become better and more effective at serving their clients.
“Talk to anyone at PAG, and you will immediately notice there’s a common theme – or a golden thread – connecting each of us,” he says. “It’s because we’re all working toward the same goal: to help advisors grow successful practices and, in turn, help more people reach their financial goals in life. When our advisors succeed, everyone succeeds.”
On any given day, Jim will field calls from multiple disciplines. His experience with both Private Advisor Group and LPL Financial, and the resulting breadth of knowledge that he’s gained, enables him to work with advisors on everything from operations and practice management to compliance and transitions. He plays an especially vital role with prospective advisors and will walk them through all their options before making the move to PAG.
“The transition itself is one of the most critical points in an independent advisor’s career,” he says when asked about his role in easing the transition process for other advisors. Not only did he help design and implement Private Advisor Group’s transition team in 2007, but he also designed FastTrack, a proprietary software that helps advisors make faster and more sound transitions.
Jim resides with his wife and three children in Long Valley, New Jersey. Outside of work, he enjoys cycling, participating in triathlons, and investing his time in his local community. He actively participates with the Kids4Kindness Morris County 4H Club, an organization that provides a way for children and their parents to give back to the community through service-based projects.
Danielle is a marketing associate responsible for the digital assets, execution of campaigns, graphic design work, and the CRM system. Over the years, advisors have come to rely on her for access to the organization’s resource center as well as critical information about its conferences and webinars. She joined Private Advisor Group in 2015.
“We’re here to support our advisors any way we can – even from a marketing perspective,” she says. “When I can help them improve their client communications or teach them how to take the greatest advantage of our resources, I know I’m making a difference.”
Danielle lives with her husband and daughter in Washington, New Jersey, where she participates in charity runs, blood drives, and other fundraisers to better connect with the people in her community. She also takes part in volunteer opportunities through Private Advisor Group, including Invest in Others, Good Grief, holiday family gifting, and food donation.
BA in Art and Design, BS in Media Communications and Technology, East Stroudsburg University
Donald Pfarr joined Private Advisor Group in 2008 as a means to provide investment strategies for his clients through the independent advisor market that are unavailable through large wirehouses. In his role as an independent financial advisor, Don has no obligation to recommend proprietary products or meet quotas, which means that he is able to offer his clients professional strategies that best serve their unique investment needs and planning goals, whether it’s for education or retirement planning. His dedication to thorough analysis, honest advice, and frequent and flexible communication helps Don build long-term relationships based on a strong level of mutual trust.
Don holds a bachelor of science in business from Montclair State University. Prior to joining the financial services industry, he completed a successful career in the telecommunications sector, where he managed multimillion-dollar programs and client relationships at AT&T. Before joining PAG, Don served as a financial advisor with Smith Barney (now Morgan Stanley/Smith Barney). Don is a registered representative of LPL Financial and holds the Series 7 and Series 66 securities registrations through LPL Financial. In addition, he is licensed to provide his clients with a broad range of life, disability, long-term-care, and variable insurance products.
Don resides in Union, New Jersey. He and his wife Donna have been married for 31 years and are the proud parents of two married daughters. Don is an active member of his community through his parish and as a member of the Knights of Columbus. Outside of the office, he can be found walking the golf course, getting in some running, or taking on another DIY project around the house. He also enjoys going into the city to dine, take in the sights, or catch a show on Broadway.
Cari brings more than 20 years of industry experience to her role as Compliance Director at Private Advisor Group. Prior to joining the business in 2020, she served as Director of Compliance at Western Wealth Advisors where she was integral in the rollout and oversight of the IAR Only platform as well as managing the corporate and hybrid compliance programs. Before that, she was a Senior Branch Examiner for 14 years at LPL Financial. Her first job at LPL was as a college intern in the Service Center, where she was later hired full time after graduation.
“Compliance should be a trusted resource and a safety net for our advisors,” she says. “Just as our advisors’ focus is on helping their clients confidently navigate the path toward their financial goals, our team’s focus is on helping advisors confidently navigate the ever-changing regulatory landscape.”
Cari grew up in San Diego and moved to Colorado 14 years ago where she continues to be an active part of her mountain community. Her passion for travel has taken her to all seven continents and has provided many adventurous experiences. She enjoys hiking, running, reading, wine, and spending her leisure time with her partner, Mitch.
Head of Advisor Growth
As Head of Advisor Growth, Frank leads three key areas of the firm focused on the collective growth of Private Advisor Group and the firm’s affiliated advisors – new business development, advisor growth and engagement, and strategy.
“Momentum continues to build in the number of advisors seeking independence – a model we believe in,” he says. “However, there’s also momentum in the broader industry trends that are competing for an advisor’s time. Investor expectations are increasing, innovation is happening rapidly, and the regulatory environment continues to add cost and complexity. Our mission is to help advisors focus on the growth, preservation, and protection of their and their clients’ life’s work by leveraging our scale and expertise. Advisors can experience true independence in a fulfilling way, without having to do it alone.”
Before joining Private Advisor Group, Frank served as Director of Investment Solutions at CUNA Mutual Group, and Senior Vice President of Enterprise Business Consulting and RIA Solutions at LPL Financial. Frank’s career has been dedicated to understanding and meeting the needs of financial advisors.
Raised in Upstate New York, Frank now resides outside of Charlotte, NC where he lives with his wife and two children. In his free time, Frank enjoys recreational flying, boating, and working on whatever may be parked in his garage on a given day.
Jeremy joined Private Advisor Group in 2013 with over two decades of experience as a financial advisor. His practice focuses on providing individuals and small businesses with financial life planning, wealth and investment management, estate planning, freelance strategies, as well as tax minimization strategies.
Jeremy graduated from the University of NC with a Bachelor of Science. He is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) Certificant and holds the Accredited Investment Fiduciary (AIF) designation. He also has earned his Enrolled Agent (EA) designation – the highest credential awarded by the IRS.
Jeremy currently holds Series 6, 7, 24, and 63 FINRA registrations through LPL Financial, and Series 65 registration through Private Advisor Group, LLC. He is also licensed in life, health, disability, and long-term care insurance. He has been named to the Chairman’s Club at LPL Financial each year from 2008 through 2020. This distinction is based on a ranking of all registered advisors supported by LPL Financial and is awarded to less than five percent of the firm’s approximately 16,000 advisors nationwide based on annual production.
Jeremy tries to live his life by this quote from Theodore Roosevelt, “It behooves every man to remember that the work of the critic is of altogether secondary importance, and that, in the end, progress is accomplished by the man who does things.” It is Jeremy’s passion to help his clients ignore the critics and strive for financial independence.
Jeremy resides in North Carolina with his wife, Sara, and children, Lauren, Hollyn, and Landon. He is an avid reader and appreciates fine wines. When he’s not working, he enjoys travelling, and often returns home with a “piece of the culture,” adding to his great collection of rocks. He is a member of both the Winston-Salem Estate Planning Council and Rotary Club, the Wake Forest Planned Giving Advisory Council, and the AANA Foundation Board. Additionally, he is a member of the Financial Services Institute.
LPL Registered Principal, Compliance Specialist
Annie is a compliance specialist with Private Advisor Group. She joined the company in 2013 after interning with the compliance and transitions services departments, where she developed a strong understanding of PAG’s supervisory process.
“Clients put a lot of trust in our advisors to help them grow their assets,” she says. “They’re essentially trusting them with their entire livelihoods. That’s why PAG works so hard to sustain our culture of compliance. Keeping advisors informed and compliant with changing requirements minimizes risk for everyone involved.”
Annie lives in Bedminster, New Jersey, where her ambition to help others extends into her personal life. In addition to donating her time at Good Grief, a non-profit that provides support groups for grieving children and families, she is pursuing training to help victims of domestic violence.
Fallon joined Private Advisor Group as a marketing associate in 2020. In her role, she is responsible for executing key marketing initiatives including an enhanced digital platform, loyalty programs, and advisor support. She has also played a critical role in launching the new PAG brand.
“I love the people and culture at Private Advisor Group,” she says. “After seeing how everyone works together and encourages each other’s growth and development, I knew I wanted to be part of the team.”
Fallon lives in Morristown, New Jersey, where she is actively involved in her community and enjoys sharing her love for the arts. In addition to volunteering at local theaters, Fallon frequently donates her time to Good Grief, Inc. For several summers, she has served as one of the teaching artists at the organization’s Expressions Summer Camp, which helps kids express their grief through acting.
BA in Visual and Performing Arts, Fairfield University
James brings strategic vision and leadership to his role as managing director, and he is responsible for overseeing the custodial and third-party manager operations for Private Advisor Group’s RIA. He rose to his current position after joining the business as a member of the compliance team in 2011.
“Identifying the right financial strategies for your clients can be a lot like solving a puzzle,” he says. “but at Private Advisor Group we really like to help our advisors put the pieces together. Sometimes, that means helping them access a specific manager or identify the right custodian.”
A seasoned Wall Street veteran, James began his career in the financial services industry at Stuart, Coleman & Co., Inc., promptly after graduating college. Initially part of the accounts payable department, he quickly ascended through the ranks to become Controller of the company and, when the firm merged with Investec Ernst & Co., he became Operations Supervisor. Later, he participated in the management buyout of the company’s private client group – today known as Maxim Group – and became Branch Manager at its headquarters in New York City.
Connecting his previous experience to his current role with Private Advisor Group, James explains, “I consider myself a life-long learner and, over the years, I’ve developed a good sense for why certain financial strategies don’t work – and how to fix them. Working at PAG allows me to use my knowledge to help the good guys on Wall Street: the advisors who are genuinely trying to help people reach their financial goals in life.”
James has two adult daughters and lives with his wife in New Rochelle, New York. Outside of work, he brings his passion for education to his community by serving on the board at his former grammar school, St. Catherine – St. Therese Catholic Academy in Brooklyn. As the Co-Class Chair of the Regis High School Annual Fund, he also helps raise money for the only all-scholarship high school in the nation. Involved in basketball since grammar school, and with his daughters having been graduated from two Big East Schools, James is happy to talk basketball with anyone.
Director of Advisor Growth and Engagement
Kevin Sullivan joined Private Advisor Group in 2015 to lead the Compliance Department and eventually transitioned to Director of Advisor Growth and Engagement. Before joining the organization, Kevin was a Managing Director at Fimat, later Newedge USA, a global leader in fixed income derivatives. Prior to starting his career on Wall Street, Kevin served his country as a Captain in the United States Marine Corps.
Kevin is particularly bullish on the investment Private Advisor Group has made in compliance technology. “We’ve been able to simplify advisors’ compliance requirements through our in-house, proprietary technology systems that we have built out over the last several years,” he says. “There is no better testimonial than to hear an advisor say, ‘it helps keep me on track and makes compliance reporting easy.’”
Kevin is married and lives in Chatham Township, New Jersey. He has volunteered extensively in his town, including serving as Mayor. As a conservationist, Kevin was instrumental in preserving open space in his town, securing the largest open space grant in the history of Morris County, New Jersey, and the second-largest grant ever awarded in the state. Kevin is also the past Co-Chair for the Parish Council of St. Patrick’s Church and School. He was recently appointed to the Morris County Trails Committee, is active with the Chatham Jaycees, is a proud member of the Knights of Columbus, and belongs to the Catskill Mountain 3500 Hiking Club. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Great Swamp Watershed Association and the Library of the Chathams. Kevin attended Penn State University on a Naval ROTC scholarship, where he met his wife.
Co-Founder, Managing Director
Pat is one of the co-founders of Private Advisor Group and brings over three decades of financial services industry experience to his role as managing director. A known visionary and natural problem-solver, Pat is recognized for having seen and participated in tremendous changes to the advisory industry over the course of his career.
“We launched Private Advisor Group because the lack of support services in the independent world made it very difficult for advisors to grow their practices while keeping a focus on their clients,” he said. “Now, by using our technology and delegating their compliance needs to us, they have the ongoing operational help they need to grow and be successful.”
Patrick began his career in 1984 with Verizon, where he served in various management operations and finance positions. After earning his MBA in 1994, he decided to change careers and become a financial advisor with American Express Financial Advisors. Later, he joined forces with John Hyland to launch the Morristown Financial Group and, shortly afterward, the pair developed a patent-pending compliance platform to reduce the increasing burden of compliance in the independent world. It was at this point that Private Advisor Group was born.
As PAG grew, Pat took his place as head of compliance to ensure independent advisors who joined his organization could be knowledgeable, confident, and prepared to face the ever-changing landscape of compliance.
Outside of work, Pat is actively involved with his community. He is a treasurer on the board of The Actors Center, a non-profit dedicated to helping performance artists cultivate their talents. He also heavily invests his time in Good Grief Inc., a nonprofit that provides peer support groups for families who have lost a parent or sibling. In addition to spending 16 years on the board of directors at Good Grief, Pat also won their Invest in Others Lifetime Achievement Award for the valuable time and effort he has put into the organization.
Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Pat now resides with his wife and two of their three children in Morristown, New Jersey. He is an avid runner and enjoys the performing arts.
RIA Registration, Legal Counsel
Sean is in-house legal counsel and a compliance officer, helping advisors navigate the complexity of today’s new regulations and legislation. He joined Private Advisor Group in 2012 after spending more than 20 years practicing law and gaining experience in both civil and criminal litigation.
“When advisors decide to go independent, we want them to have the smoothest transition possible,” he says. “In my specific role, I try to make it as easy as possible for them to understand what they need to do to comply with the rules.”
Sean lives in New Jersey and, together with his wife, enjoys that his five children are now grown. He has hiked 600 miles of the Appalachian Trail and volunteers his time to build and maintain hiking trails so more people can enjoy the outdoors. He has volunteered with the South Mountain Conservancy, the New York-New Jersey Trail Conference, and Mountain Meitheal (in Ireland).
Katherine joined Private Advisor Group in 2020 as a compliance liaison. In her role, Katherine is responsible for helping advisors adhere to compliance regulations in addition to assisting with various audit processes.
“I love PAG’s culture of working together,” Katherine says. “Everybody is dedicated to helping both our advisors and each other, and I am grateful to be a part of such a supportive team.”
Katherine lives in Chatham, New Jersey, and in her free time enjoys yoga, baking, and reading. She has also volunteered her time at several nonprofits, including GlamourGals, an organization dedicated to providing companionship to senior citizens residing in nursing homes, as well as Morristown’s own The Seeing Eye.
BA in Communication Studies, Fairleigh Dickinson University
Accounting and Commissions
Mimi is responsible for managing the company’s A/R and A/P transactions as well as assisting with advisor commissions. She joined Private Advisor Group in 2001 and, after holding positions with the client services and transitions departments, joined the accounting team in 2017.
“It’s important our advisors are compensated efficiently and accurately, so they can continue to focus on serving their clients,” she said. “Anything else would create distraction, so I partner with our advisors to resolve any issues with fees or payments as quickly as possible.”
Mimi has three grown children and resides in Morristown, New Jersey, with her husband. Her goal in the future is to spend more time giving assistance and support for raising public awareness, busting stigmas, and advocating for better health care.
BS in Business Management and Administration, Fairleigh Dickinson University
Anna is the Billing Supervisor at Private Advisor Group. She is responsible for establishing policies and procedures, streamlining the outside custodial billing process, and enhancing our billing and reporting capabilities. Anna brings over 29 years of financial operations experience encompassing various positions in the vendor equipment financing space, most recently as Operations and Quality Governance Control Leader at TIAA Commercial Finance Inc.
“I take great pride in my work anytime I can refine a process or procedure to make billing and reporting more consistent for our customers,” she says. “When I can contribute to help organize, structure, and document processes to improve internal workflows and client experiences, that is satisfying for me.”
Anna lives in Randolph, New Jersey, with her husband and three sons. When she is not entertaining her family with Sunday dinners or running after her sons or dog, she can be found crafting decorations and upcycling furniture. She often gets involved in her community, participating in school committees and church activities, including volunteering at the Interfaith Food Pantry of Morris Plains. She looks forward to taking part in volunteer opportunities through Private Advisor Group.
AAS in Business Management & Administration, Berkeley College
LPL Registered Principal, Compliance Specialist
Michael is an LPL registered principal and compliance specialist with Private Advisor Group. Prior to joining the business in 2018, he spent nearly 15 years in various compliance roles with a large insurance company. Much of his time had been spent as a member of Agency Management, handling compliance functions such as branch office exams and suitability reviews.
“In my role,” he says, “I try to make things as efficient and effective as possible while providing the right guardrails to keep advisors moving forward safely, so they can focus on what they do best: helping everyday people work toward their financial goals.”
A native resident of New Jersey, Michael currently lives in Williamstown with his daughter, Isabella, who he enjoys taking on travel adventures. At home in his free time, he enjoys playing guitar and other stringed instruments.
Bob is a compliance specialist and is responsible for reviewing financial plans and compliance projects. He also conducts remote and on-site audits of the organization’s advisors. Bob joined Private Advisor Group in 2015.
“I know audits sound intimidating,” he says, “but our advisors know we’re there to keep them out of harm’s way. We’re a team. Audits are a combined effort. And the work we do at Private Investor Group to support our advisors and keep them in regulatory compliance gives them more time to grow their business.”
Bob is dedicated to his philosophy of helping others solve problems to achieve their goals. Outside of Private Investor Group, he enjoys spending his time mentoring the men and women he had once coached in youth sports but are now progressing in their own careers.
BA in Economics, University of Richmond. MBA, Fordham University.
LPL Registered Principal, Compliance Specialist
Dick is an OSJ delegate and compliance specialist responsible for reviewing and approving structured product transactions, alternative investment purchases, and new accounts. He also performs non-OSJ office audits. Dick was an independent advisor prior to joining PAG as a compliance specialist in 2010.
“I know what it’s like to take the leap into independent advising,” he says, “and, for me, the experience was great because I chose to affiliate with PAG. Even back then, they made me feel like a valued part of their team. They guided me, educated me, and actively helped me succeed. Now that I actually work at PAG, I’m paying it forward. Advisors can count on me to be their partner as well as their protector.”
Dick resides with his wife and daughter in Hanover Township, New Jersey. He is an active member of his local church and is passionate about supporting programs that fight hunger and improve children’s access to education. Dick has been recognized by the Rotary Club of Whippany, New Jersey, as a Paul Harris Fellow.
Melissa joined Private Advisor Group as a Marketing Associate in 2021. In her role, she is responsible for executing key marketing initiatives, including an enhanced digital platform, loyalty programs, and advisor support.
“I love the sense of family at Private Advisor Group,” she says. “After my first conversation with the team, I knew that this was a very unique group who not only cared about their relationship with clients but also with each other internally.”
Before joining Private Advisor Group, Melissa worked in business development within the Experience Management space, where she helped craft high-impact experiences for both customers and employees.
Melissa lives with her husband in Austin, Texas. Outside of work, she enjoys hiking throughout the hill country and trying all the new and local food spots that Keep Austin Weird.
BA in Iberian and Latin American Languages and Cultures, The University of Texas at Austin
Client Services Associate
Denise is a client services associate wherein she interacts with advisors and their teams to provide optimal service. She joined Private Advisor Group in 2018, bringing with her more than a decade of sales and client services experience.
“I love being a part of a team that shares a common goal I can believe in,” she said, “All of us at PAG – from Compliance to Marketing Communication – are focused on one thing. And that’s doing what is right for our advisors and our clients.”
Denise lives in Morristown, New Jersey, where she is actively involved in her community. In addition to participating on school district committees, she enjoys organizing donations and performing volunteer work. As a mother, Denise has also worked hard to instill a compassion for others within her children; both her teenagers have been to Appalachia to build houses for families in need.
BA in Communications, University of Hartford