Leadership Team

30+ years after our founding, Winged Keel has grown into a sustainable, multi-generational services and administration platform. Our partnership of 14 Principals collaborates with an experienced, disciplined, and focused team of 60+ professionals. Together, we are focused on delivering world-class solutions and consistent, high-quality service to the clients and advisors that entrust us with their life insurance portfolios.

Aaron Abrahms
Principal
Rohit Dalmia
Principal
Marko Djuranovic
Principal
Brian Gartner
Principal, Head of San Francisco

Aaron Abrahms

Principal

 

Aaron Abrahms joined Winged Keel Group in 2003 and is a Principal of the firm.  He works with clients on the development of large block life insurance portfolios and on the various applications of Private Placement products.  His clients routinely utilize Traditional Life Insurance products to finance estate taxes and/or use Private Placement Life Insurance and Annuities to shield investment returns from current period taxation.

Aaron works with families throughout the U.S. and divides time between the firm's New York and San Francisco offices.  He has taken a leadership role with a number of Winged Keel’s key institutional and Family Office relationships.  He is a member of Finseca (formerly the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting) and has been a featured speaker at insurance industry and Family Office events.

Aaron earned his MBA in Finance with Distinction from Columbia Business School.  He graduated Cum Laude from the University of Pennsylvania and was an Academic All-American in Ski Racing.

An active parent of three with his wife, Aaron enjoys golf, skiing, and traveling with his family and in his free time.

Rohit Dalmia

Principal

 

Rohit Dalmia is a Principal of Winged Keel Group.  Rohit’s focus is in collaborating with Winged Keel’s Case Design, Underwriting, and Client Services teams to complete custom work for the firm’s largest and most complex accounts.

Rohit joined the firm in 2003 as a Finance Associate and held numerous positions in Case Design before being promoted to Managing Director in 2014 and Principal in 2016.  Prior to joining Winged Keel Group, Rohit worked in technology services where he collaborated with clients and programmers to build marketing campaigns and e-commerce solutions.

Rohit holds a BA in Financial Economics from Bethany College, where he was a member of the swim team.  He also holds a BBA from Sardar Patel University in India.

A resident of New Jersey with an appreciation for travel, Rohit frequently crosses the globe to visit family and friends.  He enjoys cooking Indian food and exploring the Ramen scene in New York City. 

Marko Djuranovic

Principal

 

Marko Djuranovic is a Principal of Winged Keel Group. As Head of Institutional Relationships, he oversees many of the firm’s national relationships with banks and works closely with the professional advisor community.  He applies his strong technical skills to the structuring, implementation, and service of Traditional Life Insurance portfolios for estate planning purposes and Private Placement Life Insurance and Annuities for increasing the tax efficiency of clients’ investment portfolios.  He joined Winged Keel Group as an Associate in 2008 and was promoted to Director of Product Development before becoming a Principal in 2016.

Marko holds a Ph.D. in Political Science from Columbia University. He is a CFA® charterholder and holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  He received his BA from Duke University, where he was a staff writer for a local newspaper and President of Alpha Sigma Delta of Chi Psi Fraternity.

Residing in Old Greenwich, Connecticut with his wife and two children, Marko enjoys tennis, golf, skiing, gardening, and cooking in his spare time.  Marko is also a co-founder of the Bruce Contemporaries at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, CT.

Brian Gartner

Principal, Head of San Francisco

 
Brian Gartner is a Principal of Winged Keel Group, responsible for the ongoing development and operations of Winged Keel's California presence. He specializes in the structuring, implementation, and servicing of life insurance and annuity portfolios designed to help meet the unique needs of ultra-affluent families.   

After joining Winged Keel Group as an Associate in 2011, Brian advanced into the role of Director before relocating across the country to open the firm's San Francisco office in 2016. He was promoted to Managing Director in 2019 and became a Principal in 2020. 

Brian has co-authored articles on the use of term insurance as a liquidity hedge and Private Placement Life Insurance fundamentals for the online journal of Trusts & Estates magazine. 

A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Brian was a school record holder as a member of the Varsity Swim Team and an active member of the Sigma Chi fraternity.  He holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.

Brian is an active supporter of American Lung Association, A Breath Of Hope Lung Foundation, and the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. He lives in San Rafael, California with his wife and daughter and enjoys baseball, football, and biking.
Vikash Haritwal
Principal, Chief Financial Officer
John Kessinger
Principal
Brady C. Knight
Principal
Chelsea Maeda
Principal

Vikash Haritwal

Principal, Chief Financial Officer

 
Vikash Haritwal is a Principal and the Chief Financial Officer of Winged Keel Group.  He joined the firm as an Associate in 2008, advancing into Senior Associate and Controller positions before being named Chief Financial Officer in 2017.  He is responsible for the firm's accounting, financial reporting, and licensing.  

Vikash holds a BA from the University of Pune in India and an MBA from the Rochester Institute of Technology.  Residing in New Jersey with his wife and daughter, Vikash finds great joy in moments spent with his family and in seeing and exploring new places.

John Kessinger

Principal

 
John Kessinger is a Principal of Winged Keel Group.  As Head of Case Design, he plays an integral project management role for many of the firm's largest cases.  John delivers a depth of knowledge from more than 35 years of experience in the life insurance industry.  Prior to joining Winged Keel Group, he served as a Principal at a leading insurance firm in the Boston area.

John is a member of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU).  He holds the Chartered Life Underwriter® (CLU) designation from The American College, as well as FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  He studied English and Economics at John Carroll University and Boston University. 

John and his wife have two children and live near Boston, Massachusetts.  Splitting his time between Boston and New York, John is active with family, friends, and colleagues; he enjoys running, tennis, and reading in his free time.

Brady C. Knight

Principal

  Brady Knight is a Principal of Winged Keel Group, leading the firm’s Houston office.  He has extensive experience in the structuring, implementation, and servicing of life insurance and annuity portfolios designed to optimize multi-generational wealth accumulation and wealth transfer strategies.  His clients include ultra-affluent families, business owners, key executives, and their legal and accounting advisors. 

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group in 2021, Brady served as CEO of Knight Planning Corporation—which he founded in 2006—and oversaw all aspects of the firm.  He has been a Qualifying Member of the Million Dollar Round Table* since he began his career in 1995 and is also one of their Top of the Table* members.  

A native Houstonian, Brady holds memberships and leadership positions in numerous professional and philanthropic organizations within his local community.  He serves on the Board of Directors for the Houston chapter of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors and The Whitehall Club and is actively involved in the Amschwand Sarcoma Foundation efforts.  He also serves on the River Oaks Country Club Tennis Committee and is an annual sponsor of the U.S. Men’s Clay Court Tennis Championship. 

Brady holds a Bachelor of Science from the University of St. Thomas.  He is a member of Finseca (formerly the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting) and holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.     

Brady resides in Houston, Texas with his wife and two sons.  He enjoys tennis, hunting, skiing, surfing and spending time with his family, clients, and colleagues. 


*Membership based upon insurance production. For qualification details, please visit: http://ihs.mdrt.org


Chelsea Maeda

Principal

 
Chelsea Maeda is a Principal of Winged Keel Group and responsible for the financial modeling and administration of some of the firm's largest and most complex life insurance portfolios structured by the firm.  She works with clients in the design, implementation, and long-term administration of life insurance portfolios for wealth transfer and income tax planning purposes.  Chelsea joined Winged Keel Group as an intern in 2007. 

Chelsea is a graduate of Columbia University with a BA in Statistics.  At Columbia, Chelsea was a double bassist with the Bach Society and the NYC lead coordinator for the Small Miracles Foundation, an organization that trains college students to teach children to play musical instruments through private instruction and quarterly recitals.  Prior to joining Winged Keel Group, she worked as an intern for a financial services firm in Hawaii.

Chelsea holds Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  She is a member of the Bulldogs Care Foundation Event Committee and an active supporter of the Relay for Life at Hope Lodge Manhattan.  In addition to music, she enjoys tennis, traveling, and baking.
Kenneth J. Masters
Principal
Michael Mingolelli, Jr., JD
Principal
Eric Naison-Phillips
Principal
Barbara Novak
Principal

Kenneth J. Masters

Principal

 
As a Principal of Winged Keel Group, Ken Masters works closely with a client’s team of advisors to design, model, and implement sophisticated life insurance and Private Placement portfolio strategies.  With the technical background required to build dynamic, advanced planning models, and an understanding of the transfer tax system, Ken enjoys being able to communicate complicated concepts and analysis in an understandable way.

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group as Director in 2018, Ken served as the Director of Life Insurance Design & Development at Pinnacle Financial Group for eight years.  Before that, he held roles directing R&D and advanced case design with two life insurance advisory companies and delivered advanced market consulting services to Sun Life Financial.
 
Ken is a member of the Boston Estate Planning Council (BEPC), the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU), and CFA Society Boston.  He has spoken on advanced estate planning techniques at national insurance conferences and has been a guest lecturer for Boston University’s Graduate Tax Law Program.  His articles have appeared in National Underwriter magazine, Private Wealth magazine, Estate Planning magazine, and LinkedIn’s Pulse, and he has been quoted in various industry publications.   

Majoring in Finance, Ken graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from McGill University’s Desautels Faculty of Management.  He is also a CFA® Charterholder, Chartered Life Underwriter®, Chartered Financial Consultant®, and Accredited Estate Planner®, and holds FINRA Series 7, 24, and 66 securities licenses. 

Ken and his family live in Medfield, Massachusetts.  In addition to spending time with his family, Ken enjoys playing golf, practicing martial arts, and studying history.

Michael Mingolelli, Jr., JD

Principal

 
Michael Mingolelli, Jr. is a Principal of Winged Keel Group, leading the firm’s Boston office.  He consults with ultra-affluent clients on wealth transfer strategies through the design, implementation, and monitoring of Traditional and Private Placement Life Insurance portfolios.  His clients include executives of public and private companies, hedge and private equity fund partners, and family offices, as well as advisors focused on wealth management, law, and tax.

Michael has been quoted or published in Private Wealth magazine, The Wall Street Journal, Barron’s Penta Daily, the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting’s (AALU) The Quarterly magazine, Insurance News magazine, the Boston Business Journal, and New York Estate Planning News.  He is also a frequent speaker, addressing the use of Private Placement and Traditional Life Insurance portfolios to audiences such as the M Financial Group Annual Meeting, The Forum 400, the Boston University Graduate Tax Program, and Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, Inc. (MCLE).

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group in 2018, Michael served as CEO of Pinnacle Financial Group, which became a division of Hub International in 2016.  Before his tenure at Pinnacle, Michael was a corporate lawyer at Sullivan & Worcester LLP, where he represented public companies and private equity firms.  His career began as a corporate lawyer at Testa, Hurwitz & Thibeault LLP, where he represented technology companies in venture financings, acquisitions, public offerings, and general corporate matters.

An active member of the national advisor community, Michael is a member of M Financial Group’s Product Development Group and M Political Advocacy Committee.  He also previously served on the Board of Directors of AALU, the nation’s leading life insurance and annuities advocacy organization, and on the M Financial Group Board of Directors.  In his local community, Michael serves on the Board of Trustees of the Greater New England Multiple Sclerosis Society.

Michael graduated from Boston College with a BS in Finance, magna cum laude, and was a member of the Carroll School of Management's Honors Program.  He also graduated from Boston College Law School, cum laude.

Michael lives in Wellesley, Massachusetts with his wife and their three daughters.  Aside from spending time with his family, Michael enjoys reading, traveling, and following the sports teams of his alma mater.

Eric Naison-Phillips

Principal

 
Eric Naison-Phillips is a Principal of Winged Keel Group and a member of the firm’s Executive Management Committee.  He joined Winged Keel as a Client Relationship Associate in 2003, advancing into the role of Director of Portfolio Design before becoming a Principal in 2009.  Actively focused on structuring, implementing, and servicing life insurance portfolios designed to help meet the unique needs of ultra-affluent families, Eric’s area of expertise is in the complex application of both Traditional and Private Placement Life Insurance arrangements.

A frequent speaker, Eric has presented on the topics of Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI), Private Placement Variable Annuities (PPVA), Insurance-Dedicated Funds (IDFs), and the advanced applications of traditional life insurance at industry conferences, hedge fund round-tables, private family office events in New York and San Francisco, and at the 2016 Robin Hood Investors Conference.  He served as the Conference Chairman of the 11th Annual Private Placement Life Insurance & Variable Annuities Forum in 2013, and has also served on the Board of Directors of M Financial Group, one of the nation’s premier insurance design and distribution organizations for ultra-affluent clientele.  He has co-authored articles on the impact of rising interest rates on guaranteed life insurance products, the use of term insurance as a liquidity hedge, and on charitable applications of PPVA Accounts for the online journals of Trusts & Estates and Financial Advisor magazines.

A strong advocate of both the needs of his clients and the needs of his community, Eric contributes energy and efforts to causes that engage, educate, and motivate opportunities for growth.  In 2006, he partnered with friends to found the Bulldogs Care Foundation (BCF), which supports young men and women as they pursue personal development through programs in athletics, education, and mentoring.  He is also a standing member of The Yale University Club Committee, which awards grants to Yale students from low-income families, and a former member of the PASE (Partnership for After School Education) Young Professionals Committee.  In 2016, he joined his wife—then a member of the Paul Taylor Dance Company—as a founding member of TaylorNEXT, which works to expand accessibility of unique, behind-the-scenes experiences to young patrons.

A graduate of Yale University with a BA in American Studies, Eric was a pitcher and four-year letter winner for the Yale baseball team.  He is a member of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU) and holds FINRA Series 3, 6, and 63 securities licenses.

Eric lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife.  Along with supporting the performing arts, he enjoys yoga, golf, and squash in his free time.

Barbara Novak

Principal

  Barbara Novak has spent her 20+ year career developing deep expertise in life insurance solutions for ultra-affluent individuals and their families. As a Principal of Winged Keel Group, she specializes in the structuring, implementation, and administration of both Traditional and Private Placement Life Insurance and Annuities, working directly on many of the firm’s largest and most complex portfolios.

Leveraging extensive experience interacting with clients and their professional advisors, Barbara drives the development of Winged Keel’s operational platform and integrates new technologies to optimize the firm’s ability to provide best-in-class services to its clients. She plays a key role in strategic planning initiatives, supervises the development of client reporting systems, and facilitates automation and process improvements to deliver consistent, high-quality work across the firm.

Prior to joining Winged Keel in 2008, Barbara spent 14 years managing the implementation and administration of life insurance portfolios for affluent individuals and families at another insurance advisory firm, while developing their operational platform.

Graduating from Columbia University in 1994 with degrees in History and Sociology, Barbara also earned an MS in Statistics and Operations Research from New York University’s Leonard N. Stern School of Business in 2001. She is a Chartered Life Underwriter® and holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.
Matthew H. Phillips
Principal
Jeri L. Turley
Principal
Campbell T. Gerrish
Principal Emeritus
Alexander Tuff
Strategic Consultant

Matthew H. Phillips

Principal

 

Matt Phillips is a Principal of Winged Keel Group.  His focus is on structuring, implementing, and servicing life insurance portfolios that are designed for ultra-affluent families.  This includes both Traditional Life Insurance that is used in conjunction with an estate plan, as well as Private Placement Life Insurance that is used as part of an inter-generational investment plan. 

Matt specializes in educating clients and their advisors on the economic and risk factors associated with various types of life insurance products.  Leveraging his breadth of expertise, he guides them through the decision-making process to construct a portfolio that is tailored to meet their needs.  He joined Winged Keel Group in 1997 and became a Principal in 2003.  During his career, he has had responsibility for managing Winged Keel’s Private Client Group comprised of the firm’s Portfolio Design, Underwriting, and Client Administration teams. 

Matt has been a featured speaker at the M Financial Group and Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU) national meetings on estate planning uses of life insurance, income tax-efficient investing using Private Placement Life Insurance and Annuities, and growing a multi-generational professional services firm geared toward serving an ultra-affluent client base. 

Matt graduated from Bard College and is originally from Larchmont, New York.  He lives in New Rochelle with his wife and two children.  He enjoys playing golf, ice hockey, and running.

Jeri L. Turley

Principal

 
Jeri Turley is a Principal of Winged Keel Group, leading the firm’s Richmond, Virginia, and Washington D.C. offices.  Working closely with ultra-affluent families, their businesses, and their advisors throughout the wealth accumulation and transfer process, she specializes in structuring, implementing, and administering customized insurance solutions that enhance wealth accumulation strategies, promote philanthropic giving, and maximize the value passed to future generations. 

Advocating for social progress, innovation, and informed decision-making in successful succession planning, Jeri has written articles for the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting’s (AALU) The Quarterly magazine, Your Terms (a publication focused on coaching, strategy, succession, and philanthropy), LinkedIn’s Pulse, and Private Wealth magazine.  She has also been a featured speaker at industry conferences and forums nationwide and was a guest speaker on Executive Leaders Radio in 2013, addressing the importance of mentorship in leadership roles.

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group in 2019, Jeri served as President and Principal of BCG Companies in Richmond, VA, and BCG Holleman in Chevy Chase, MD.  She joined BCG Companies in 1994, and during her tenure developed a strong understanding of the needs of ultra-affluent families and their businesses.  She also coordinated and supervised the case design, underwriting, and servicing efforts of BCG’s professional staff in both the Richmond and Chevy Chase offices.

Jeri currently serves as Chair-Elect on the Executive Committee for AALU, where she has been a member of the Board of Directors since 2014.  She has also served on the Board of Directors of M Financial Holdings, Inc. since 2017 and is a member of the Estate Planning Council of Richmond.

Jeri earned a BBA in International Business and Economics from James Madison University, where she joined—and today remains an active supporter of—the Alpha Phi International Fraternity, a fraternity of women supporting one another in lifelong achievement.

Splitting time between Winged Keel’s Richmond and Washington, D.C. offices, Jeri resides in Richmond with her husband and stays busy keeping up with their three sons in her free time.  She also enjoys mountain biking with her husband and their friends, finding time to read and write, and following her alma mater.

Campbell T. Gerrish

Principal Emeritus

 

A recognized leader in the insurance industry, Campbell co-founded Winged Keel Group—one of the leading independent life insurance brokerage firms in the U.S.—in 1989. While continuing to cultivate the client advisor relationships he has developed for more than four decades, Campbell dedicates significant time to mentoring future leaders who will take Winged Keel Group through to its next level of multigenerational partnership. Driving strategic alignment with Winged Keel Group’s core values, Campbell also serves a vital role in leading philanthropic efforts within the firm.

After joining the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU) Board of Directors in 1995, and becoming a member of the Executive Committee in 1998, Campbell served as President of the AALU in 2001. During his tenure as President, Campbell spearheaded AALU’s creation of the AALU Issues Alliance, an invaluable partnership between AALU and the industry’s leading organizations that, today, continues to address key legislative and regulatory issues impacting advanced life insurance planning. In 2016, the AALU presented Campbell with the Gerald H. Sherman Service Award, recognizing him for his accomplishments and contributions in helping AALU fulfill its mission to promote, protect, and preserve the life insurance industry.

Campbell is an active participant in the development of The M Center of Excellence at The American College, focused on facilitating longer, healthier lives, lived well. He spoke at the Summit on Business and Future of Aging at the 20th Annual Milken Institute Global Conference, and has also been a featured speaker at industry conferences and annual meetings of the AALU, the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT), the Top of the Table, the International Forum, and the Practising Law Institute's Annual Estate Planning Institute. He has also authored articles that have appeared in Strategic Consulting magazine, Executive Compensation and Benefits, and was the subject of a feature article in Advisor Today.

A 1973 graduate of Princeton University, Campbell is a Chartered Life Underwriter (CLU), a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC), and holds a Master of Science in Financial Services (MSFS).

Campbell is married with three children and lives in Rye, New York. With a deep appreciation for his local community, Campbell is an active supporter of New York charitable organizations and currently serves on the Board of Directors of Cristo Rey New York High School. In the past, he has served on the boards of The Partnership for a Drug Free America and The Breast Cancer Alliance.

Alexander Tuff

Strategic Consultant

 

For seven years, Alex Tuff oversaw the operations and business strategy of Winged Keel Group as Principal and member of the Executive Management Committee, leading its transition into a multi-generational national firm.  In 2021, he moved into the role of Strategic Consultant with a focus on strategic planning and key growth initiatives. 

Alex brings more than 20 years of executive experience in growing and transforming organizations.  His specialty is in strategic planning, information systems, senior management hiring and alignment, capital raising, and financial restructurings.

Alex earned an MBA in Finance with Distinction from Columbia Business School and a BA in Economics from Colby College.  He has been a featured lecturer at Brown University on Leadership, Turnarounds, and Management topics.  He is also the author of Get Aligned! Unlocking Enterprise Value through People, Processes and Systems and a Board Member of the Greenwich Chapter of the Young Presidents Organization (YPO).

In his community, Alex serves on the Board of Directors for the Open Door Shelter of Norwalk, Connecticut, which works to address the causes and complexities of the homeless and working poor.  He is the Founder and Chair of an endowed scholarship for the benefit of high school students who have lost one or both parents and a four-year host family to a high school student from the “A Better Chance” program.  He previously served on the Board of Stamford Hospital where his efforts focused on fundraising for a new regional hospital.   
 
Alex resides in New Canaan, Connecticut, with his wife and their three children.  He is an avid skier, plays competitive paddle tennis, and coaches youth soccer.

Vernon W. Holleman, III
Managing Director, Client Relationship Manager
Zach Specht
Director, Client Relationship Manager
Kathleen Watt
Senior Associate, Client Relationship Manager
Caroline Artley
Director, Client Services

Vernon W. Holleman, III

Managing Director, Client Relationship Manager

 
Vernon is Managing Director of Winged Keel Group’s Washington, D.C. office.  As a Client Relationship Manager with deep roots in the life insurance profession, he works closely with ultra-affluent families and their advisors on wealth transfer planning.  He additionally spearheads the ongoing development of Winged Keel’s presence in the greater Washington, D.C. area in collaboration with the firm’s Principals.

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group in 2019, Vernon oversaw the Washington, D.C. division of BCG Companies, known as BCG Holleman.  Vernon joined his father’s life insurance firm, The Holleman Companies—which ultimately merged with BCG Companies—in 1994 and became President in 2001.  

Vernon has been published in industry and trade publications, such as Bloomberg Tax and Trusts & Estates, and frequently speaks on the topic of succession planning.  He serves as Co-Chair of the membership committee for the Washington, D.C. Estate Planning Council and is a member of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting (AALU).  He previously served as President of the District of Columbia Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors from 2003 to 2004. 

He is also dedicated to his community as a second-generation Washingtonian and is a current Trustee of the Federal City Council and member of The Economic Club of Washington, D.C.  He has held several prior board positions for local organizations such as the Washington DC Police Foundation.

Vernon is a graduate of St. Albans School in Washington, D.C.  He earned a B.A. in Political Science and Public Policy from the University of Denver in 1993 and his Chartered Life Underwriter® designation in 2011 from The American College.  Vernon resides in Washington, D.C., where he enjoys spending time with his wife, children, and step-children.  He also relishes being in nature, fishing, skiing, traveling, reading, '80s movies, and can’t seem to shake his interest in politics and the local professional football team.

Zach Specht

Director, Client Relationship Manager

 

Zach joined Winged Keel Group’s New York office as a Design Analyst in April 2013.  In March 2014, he advanced into the role of Client Relationship Associate, specializing in private placement life insurance and annuity products.  In 2016, his role developed into a Senior Client Relationship Manager position, and he was promoted to Director in 2019.  As a Director, Zach continues to collaborate closely with ultra-affluent clients, their advisors, and Winged Keel’s Case Design team on the education, design, and implementation of Private Placement Life Insurance and Annuity portfolios. 

Prior to joining Winged Keel, Zach worked at SALI Fund Services in Austin, Texas.  While there, he worked closely with asset managers to create insurance-dedicated funds and attach those funds as investment options on the platforms of life insurance companies.

Zach is a graduate of The McCombs School of Business at The University of Texas at Austin with a BBA in finance.  He holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  A member of the Bulldogs Care Foundation Event Committee, Zach lives in New York City and enjoys golf and basketball.

Kathleen Watt

Senior Associate, Client Relationship Manager

 
Katie Watt joined Winged Keel Group as a Design Analyst in 2014, supporting the Principals of the firm with life insurance portfolio reviews and client presentations.  In 2019, Katie advanced to the role of Senior Client Relationship Associate.  In her current position, she works closely with clients in the design, implementation, and administration of life insurance portfolios for wealth management and planning purposes.

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group, Katie served as Actuarial Analyst at John Hancock in Boston, where she gained experience in pricing life insurance products. 

Katie is a graduate of Northeastern University with a Bachelor of Science in Mathematics.  She holds Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  Katie resides in Hoboken, NJ, and enjoys playing soccer, running, reading, and sampling chocolates.

Caroline Artley

Director, Client Services

  As a Director of Winged Keel Group, Caroline Artley manages Client Services for Corporate and Traditional Life Insurance portfolios.  In her role, she oversees inforce policy management, facilitates client requests, and develops customized reporting for the administration of estate planning, wealth transfer, split dollar, and corporate plans.  Caroline brings her unique strength in systemization to streamline processes and develop tools to improve efficiency and better serve our clients.

Prior to joining Winged Keel in 2019, Caroline was the Client Services Director at BCG Companies.  She served 13 years with the firm, where she managed the inforce client base, annual review process, and coordinated with plan administrators.  Caroline was instrumental in the development of case management, and she worked closely with the Advanced Design and Client Service teams to provide support for ultra-affluent families and corporations.

Caroline earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from St. John Fisher College and holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  Residing in upstate New York with her husband and son, Caroline enjoys playing volleyball and following her favorite local and professional hockey teams.   
Edward Chan
Director, Innovation and Operations
Frank Chun
Director, Information Technology
Brigette DiNicola
Director, Head of Client Services
Douglas Doughty
Director, Case Design

Edward Chan

Director, Innovation and Operations

  Ed is Director of Innovation and Operations for Winged Keel Group.  In this role, his focus is on developing and executing a vision and strategy for driving innovation within the organization.  He works cross-functionally with teams in all departments to inspire best practices, increase efficiencies, and implement new technology systems. 

Ed joined Winged Keel in 2002 as a Design Associate and spent nearly 10 years with the firm.  He rejoined Winged Keel Group in 2018, transitioned to the role of Senior Operations Associate, and was promoted to Director of Innovation and Operations in 2019. 

Ed is a graduate of Hunter College, where he received a Bachelor of Arts with a double major in Economics and Sociology.  A former Hong Kong resident, he now resides in Brooklyn, New York, and enjoys traveling and pursuing his passion for photography.

Frank Chun

Director, Information Technology

 
Frank is the Director of Information Technology. He joined the firm in 2008.  With more than 20 years of experience in the technology field, Frank is a hands-on manager with experience in user support, network design and implementation, business continuity and disaster recovery planning, and IT security.  He is responsible for overseeing the operation of the firm’s technology department.  He is also responsible for ensuring that the latest security protocol and infrastructure are in place to keep our data secured and available. 
 
Prior to joining Winged Keel, Frank worked at Connors Communications as their Systems Administrator.  He also worked at Delia’s Inc. as the Manager of Network and Security Systems and at Marvel Entertainment as the Manager of Networking and PC Support.
 
Frank holds a BS in Electrical Engineering from Polytechnic University and an AS in Nursing from BMCC.  He is also a Registered Nurse.
 
In his spare time, Frank loves to get his hands dirty with home improvement projects.

Brigette DiNicola

Director, Head of Client Services

  Brigette DiNicola rejoined Winged Keel Group as Director of Client Services in 2020, with more than 20 years of experience in the life insurance industry.  In this role, she is responsible for overseeing the service and administration of Traditional and Private Placement life insurance and annuity portfolios and managing the team of service professionals. 

Prior to rejoining Winged Keel Group, Brigette served as Principal and Co-Chief Operating Officer at Financial Architects Partners in Boston, where she oversaw client service, underwriting, sales support, and operational initiatives.  She began her career in life insurance in 1998 as an Account Manager with Winged Keel Group.  In her six-year tenure, she was promoted to Manager of Implementation and Client Relations.    

Brigette received a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Virginia.  She is a Certified Employee Benefit Specialist, Fellow of the Academy of Life Underwriting, Chartered Life Underwriter®, and Chartered Financial Consultant®, and she holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses. 
 
Brigette resides in Needham, MA with her husband and three kids.  She enjoys spending her free time with friends, watching her children’s youth sports games, reading, and volunteering.

Douglas Doughty

Director, Case Design

  Doug Doughty is a Director of Winged Keel Group.  Based in the firm’s Houston office, Doug oversees case design and works closely with a client’s team of advisors to structure and implement complex life insurance and annuity solutions.   

Doug brings vast industry knowledge and experience to the firm.  Prior to joining Winged Keel Group in 2021, he was the Director of Planning for Knight Planning Corporation, where he was responsible for product research, advanced planning techniques for estate and business planning, and overseeing financial underwriting.  He has also held positions with American General, Pacific Life, and Principal Financial Group in a variety of capacities, including sales and marketing, case design, and client relations. 
 
Doug graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Science in Economics.  He, along with his wife and three children, enjoy staying active in their church, spending weekends in Rockport, Texas and annual visits to Hilton Head Island in South Carolina.  He is an avid follower of his favorite sports teams, including the Texas A&M Aggies, Houston Texans and Astros, and Buffalo Sabres. 
Jennifer Fitzgerald
Director, Client Services
Nicole Harrington
Director, Talent Acquisition and Development
Eric Hieber
Director, Case Design
Christian Lysinger
Director, Client Services

Jennifer Fitzgerald

Director, Client Services

  As a Director of Winged Keel Group, Jennifer Fitzgerald manages Client Services for clients with Traditional Life Insurance and Business Continuation Insurance portfolios.  She is responsible for overseeing inforce policy management, providing efficient and proactive service, and developing customized reporting to ensure the effective management of each client’s life insurance portfolio.  Jennifer applies her analytical skills to review complex and sophisticated insurance portfolios and develop and automate team metrics.

In her 10+ year career prior to joining Winged Keel in 2019, Jennifer held the positions of Client Services Analyst at BCG Companies and Sales Support Specialist at Principal Financial Group.

Jennifer earned a Bachelor of Science in Finance from Virginia Commonwealth University and holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  She resides outside of Richmond, Virginia with her husband and two daughters.  In her free time, Jennifer enjoys cooking, outdoor pursuits, and spending time at the beaches of North Carolina’s Outer Banks. 

Nicole Harrington

Director, Talent Acquisition and Development

 
Since joining Winged Keel Group in 2000, Nicole has managed all aspects of Human Resources, Recruiting, Employee Relations, Performance Management, Training Programs, and Event Planning.  In her current role as Director of Talent Acquisition & Development, Winged Keel Group continues to draw on her expertise in attracting and retaining highly talented individuals whose skill and aptitude are aligned with the firm’s business goals and whom can consistently perform at a high level.

Nicole holds a Bachelors Degree in Social Work from Florida International University, and a Masters Degree in Clinical Social Work from Barry University.  She is also trained and certified as a Co-Active Executive Coach from the renowned Coaches Training Institute. 

Nicole enjoys cooking, practicing yoga, hiking, and traveling.  She also volunteers her time to Habitat for Humanity and Our House Grief Support Center.

Eric Hieber

Director, Case Design

 
Eric is a Director of Winged Keel Group.  Based in the firm’s Richmond and Washington D.C. offices, Eric oversees case design and the management of client relationships.  He specializes in structuring customized insurance solutions that assist families and their advisors in their wealth accumulation, wealth transfer, and business succession planning.    

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group in 2019, Eric was a Principal of BCG Companies in Richmond, VA.  His association with BCG Companies began in 1993 after college.  He then spent three years focused on the carrier side of the industry, gaining valuable insight as the Director of M Financial Marketing for Prudential, before returning to BCG Companies.  Eric’s unique exposure to both sides of the industry has developed his niche for both operational leadership and helping clients make informed decisions.  He has co-authored articles on the uses of life insurance as a long-term planning strategy and is a contributor to LinkedIn’s online journal, Pulse.

Eric serves as President of the Estate Planning Council of Richmond and is an active member of the Association for Advanced Life Underwriting—the nation’s leading life insurance and annuities advocacy organization.  He earned a BS in Mathematics from the University of Richmond, and is a graduate of Leadership Metro Richmond, a community leadership development and engagement program.

Eric and his family live in Richmond, Virginia.  In addition to actively supporting his two children’s various activities, Eric enjoys time focused on enriching his local community, playing golf, and traveling the world with his wife.

Christian Lysinger

Director, Client Services

  As a Director of Winged Keel Group, Christian Lysinger manages Client Services for Private Placement Life Insurance (PPLI) and Private Placement Variable Annuity (PPVA) portfolios.  In his role, he oversees customized reporting for PPLI and PPVA Accounts and their accompanying investment vehicles, as well portfolio reviews and analytics, investment allocations, and all other aspects of servicing the portfolios. 

Christian joined Winged Keel Group in 2014 as an Associate and was promoted to Senior Associate, before advancing to Director within the Client Services department. 

Christian holds a Bachelor of Arts in Rhetoric and Communication and Chinese Studies, magna cum laude, from the University at Albany.  He also holds FINRA Series 6 and 63 securities licenses.  Christian resides in Astoria, Queens and enjoys skiing, hiking, and camping.
Stephanie Preston
Director, Marketing and Communications
Katharine Vinchot
Director, Head of Underwriting
Mee Mei Zhao
Director, Case Design

Stephanie Preston

Director, Marketing and Communications

 
Stephanie Preston is Director of Marketing and Communications at Winged Keel Group.  In this role, she oversees event management and ensures that all marketing and communications initiatives reflect the firm’s core values of client-centric collaboration, unmatched excellence, dedication and integrity, and innovation.  

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group in 2019, she served as Senior Director of the travel and hospitality practice at EVINS Communications.  She previously held the position of Vice President at JConnelly, a financial communications firm, and DKC Public Relations, one of the largest independent communications agencies.  Throughout her career, Stephanie has spearheaded efforts to attract and retain ultra-affluent audiences for a diverse range of financial, travel, hospitality, lifestyle, and technology brands.  

Stephanie is a graduate of Marist College with a Bachelor of Arts in Communication, where she also spent a semester abroad in Florence, Italy.  In addition to traveling, she enjoys cooking, practicing yoga, and listening to NPR podcasts.

Katharine Vinchot

Director, Head of Underwriting

 
Kate Vinchot is the Director of Underwriting at Winged Keel Group and has been with the firm for more than a decade. She began her career in 2007 as part of the Winged Keel Group college internship program, and subsequently advanced to several positions within the Underwriting department.

Kate has managed the underwriting and implementation of some of the largest portfolios of both traditional and private placement life insurance within the firm, as well as private placement variable annuities. In her current role, she oversees the Underwriting department, and manages the resources of the team to ensure that clients and their advisors receive white-glove service throughout the implementation process.

Kate is a graduate of Fordham University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and Media Studies. She lives in New Jersey with her husband, and in addition to spending time with her family, she enjoys cooking and reading.

Mee Mei Zhao

Director, Case Design

 
Mee Mei Zhao is a Director at Winged Keel Group and has been with the firm since 2011.  Supporting the firm’s Principals with client presentation preparation, her work encompasses a broad range of both traditional life insurance and private placement portfolio reviews, although her technical and analytical proficiency has led to a specialization in private placement accounts.

Prior to joining Winged Keel Group, Mee Mei was an Actuarial Consultant with Buck Consultants, where she led Associates and Senior Associates in analysis and project planning for retirement accounts.  Her experience also includes Associate and Analyst work with GlobeOp and Moody’s Investors Service, both in New York.

Mee Mei holds a Bachelors of Arts in Finance and Actuarial Science, Cum Laude, Distinction FIN, from The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.  She resides in Queens, New York, is fluent in Cantonese, and enjoys traveling.