Chartwell is pleased to announce Blackstone has successfully completed a minority equity investment in Salas O’Brien, a leading employee-owned engineering and technical services firm.

Position: 2-Directors & VPs

Nick Aberle

Nick has worked in financial analysis and accounting since 2014. He assists in the valuation of operating companies, family limited partnerships, and limited liability companies for a variety of purposes, including employee stock ownership plans, corporate planning, estate and gift tax, financial reporting, and merger and acquisitions.

Professional Experience

Prior to Chartwell, Nick was a senior manager at Legacy Equity Valuations. His preceding time was spent as a senior analyst at Moss Adams LLP in the business valuation department and also in accounting and operations roles with Seattle Children’s Research Institute. Nick was a member of the U.S. Air Force from 2006-2010 as a linguist before honorably separating.

Jeff Anderson

Jeff joined Chartwell in 2015 and is a member of the firm’s valuation and transaction opinions team. He has experience advising privately held business owners and management teams on a wide range of services including valuations of employee stock ownership plans, ESOP transactions, mergers & acquisitions, and strategic alternatives. He has expertise in financial modeling, cash flow analysis, and the analysis of guideline public companies and M&A markets.

Jeff is passionate about mentoring the next generation of finance professionals and assists with the training and development of the firm’s new analysts.

Professional Involvement & Certification

Jeff is an active member of The ESOP Association, where he regularly attends local, regional, and national conferences focused on employee ownership. He is designated as an Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) in Business Valuation by the American Society of Appraisers.

Matt Dennison

Matt is a leader in Chartwell’s corporate finance practice, where he consistently delivers innovative, solutions-based advice to shareholders, boards of directors, and management teams of privately held middle-market companies. His areas of expertise include investment banking services, strategic alternatives analysis, employee stock ownership plan (ESOP) transactions, sell-side M&A transactions, and debt capital raises. Matt has a robust track record of successfully completing transactions across a diverse range of industries. This extensive experience equips him with the ability to design creative yet pragmatic strategies, uniquely tailored to enable companies to reach their specific objectives.

Professional Involvement & Certification

Matt is an active member of The ESOP Association, where he currently serves as an associate member of the Fiduciary Committee. He is also a member of the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO). Matt has been a featured speaker at national conferences held by these organizations on corporate finance and investment banking topics. In 2023, Matt was a recipient of The M&A Advisor’s Emerging Leaders Award in recognition of his expertise and professional accomplishments in investment banking.

Matt is a registered representative with Chartwell affiliate CCS Transactions, LLC and holds FINRA Series 7, 63, and 79 licenses.

Professional Experience

Prior to Chartwell, Matt was an equity research senior associate at RBC Capital Markets, where he conducted market and company analysis, including financial modeling, equity valuation, and research reports on publicly-traded companies within the oil and gas industry. He also previously worked as an equity research associate at Northland Securities.

Check the background of this investment professional on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.

Matt Ewing

Matt is a leader in Chartwell’s corporate finance practice where he specializes in advising shareholders and boards of directors of middle-market companies on a wide range of ownership transition, merger & acquisition, and capital markets situations. Matt has a particular interest and expertise in employee ownership and ESOP transactions.

During his decade long career at Chartwell, Matt has engaged with all the firm’s service lines. This diverse background has provided him with a comprehensive knowledge of valuation methodologies, bespoke transaction structuring and design, strategic and capital planning, and the workings of complex corporate models. Matt has worked with companies across a broad range of industries throughout the U.S. and has expertise on the issues facing mature companies. This extensive experience allows him to bring specialized counsel to every unique client situation, where he enjoys applying his knowledge creatively to best help business owners achieve their objectives.

Professional Involvement & Certification

Matt is an active member of The ESOP Association, where he currently serves as an associate member of the Legislative & Regulatory Advisory Committee. He is also involved with the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO) and Employee-Owned S Corporations of America (ESCA). Matt has been selected to present at national conferences on corporate finance topics. In 2022, Matt was a recipient of The M&A Advisor’s Emerging Leaders Award in recognition of his expertise and professional accomplishments in investment banking.

Matt is a registered representative with Chartwell affiliate CCS Transactions, LLC and holds FINRA Series 7, 63, and 79 licenses.

Professional Experience

Prior to Chartwell, Matt was an equity research associate at Northland Securities affiliate, Northland Capital Markets, where he produced exhaustive research on publicly traded companies for institutional investors. He also conducted market and company analysis, including financial modeling and equity valuation.

Prior to Northland, Matt was an investment banking analyst at George K. Baum & Co., where he worked on middle-market M&A and public finance transactions.

Check the background of this investment professional on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.

Michael Fischer

Michael is a member of Chartwell’s consulting practice. He provides independent financial advisory services related to ESOP repurchase obligations, strategic alternatives, ownership transition, and executive compensation. He works with management teams, boards of directors, ESOP trustees, and business owners to develop, evaluate, and implement solutions for achieving long-term corporate sustainability.

Michael has advised clients on engagements across all of Chartwell’s service lines throughout his career with the firm, providing him with a strong understanding of valuation methodologies, transaction structures, capital structures, and a proficiency in analyzing financial statements.

Professional Certification

Michael is a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and a member of the CFA Institute and the CFA Society of Minnesota.

Rachel Flaskey

Rachel provides valuations of companies for a variety of purposes including estate and gift, buy/sell agreements, employee stock ownership plans, ownership transitions, and general corporate planning purposes. She has experience with complex capital structures and valuations of corporate securities issued as equity compensation to comply with IRS (IRC§ 409A) and financial reporting (ASC 718) requirements. Rachel has worked with and understands the varying needs of clients across a range of sizes and industries, with particular expertise valuing early-stage companies.

Professional Involvement

Rachel is a member of the Association for Corporate Growth. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) licensed in the states of Minnesota and South Dakota. She holds membership in the Minnesota Society of Certified Public Accountants and the American Institute for Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). Additionally, Rachel is Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) and is Certified in Financial Forensics (CFF) as granted by the AICPA. Rachel maintains certification as an Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) designated in Business Valuation by the American Society of Appraisers.

Rachel has won national and local industry recognition for her work in business valuation. She is a recipient of the Twin Cities Finance & Commerce Top Women in Finance Award, NACVA’s Top 40 Under 40 Award, and the AICPA’s Standing Ovation Award. Rachel has written for The Business Journals on a variety of valuation related topics and also contributes content to other industry publications.

Professional Experience

Prior to Chartwell, Rachel served as a senior manager in the valuation services practice of Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, LLP.

Josh Graff

Josh joined Chartwell in 2016 and is a member of the firm’s valuation and transaction opinions team. He has experience advising privately held business owners and management teams on a wide range of services including valuations of employee stock ownership plans, ESOP transactions, mergers & acquisitions, and strategic alternatives. Josh has advised clients on engagements across all of Chartwell’s service lines throughout his career with the firm, providing him with a strong understanding of corporate finance methodologies, transaction structures, capital structures, and a proficiency in analyzing financial statements.

Josh is passionate about mentoring the next generation of financial professionals and co-leads Chartwell’s internship program, where he supervises the education and output of the firm’s financial analyst interns.

Professional Certification

Josh is a registered representative with Chartwell affiliate CCS Transactions, LLC and holds FINRA Series 63 and 79 licenses.

Check the background of this investment professional on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.

Chris Ham

Chris is a member of Chartwell’s valuation and transaction opinions practice, focusing primarily on employee stock ownership plans. He is experienced in providing financial advisory services to ESOP trustees and other corporate fiduciaries. Chris is an expert in valuation analysis for a variety of purposes including ERISA administration, corporate planning, and financial reporting. Throughout his career, Chris has worked with companies across a diverse array of industries.

Professional Involvement & Experience

Chris is a member of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG), The ESOP Association, and the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO). Prior to Chartwell, Chris was Director at an independent trustee practice where he led ESOP transactions and maintained responsibility for numerous ongoing ESOP company relationships.

Chris began his career at a national firm where he executed various engagements including analysis of derivatives and complex securities, opinions for fairness and solvency, and valuations for financial reporting and ESOP administration purposes. He managed the execution of multiple projects and was responsible for the training and development of junior staff throughout the firm.

Olivia Kowalski

Olivia joined Chartwell in 2013 and is a member of the firm’s valuation and transaction opinions practice. She provides financial advisory and valuation services, with a focus on employee stock ownership plans. Olivia also has experience advising companies on ownership transition strategies, including buy-side and sell-side transactions. Throughout her career, she has worked with a diverse array of companies across various industry sectors and has extensive experience advising architecture and engineering firms.

Professional Involvement & Certification

Olivia is an active member of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG), where she currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Portland chapter and as chair of the Excelling Leaders group. She is also a member of The ESOP Association and the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO).

Olivia is designated as an Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA) in Business Valuation by the American Society of Appraisers. She is a registered representative with Chartwell affiliate CCS Transactions, LLC and holds FINRA Series 63 and 79 licenses.

Check the background of this investment professional on FINRA’s BrokerCheck.

Katie Lind

Katie is a leader in Chartwell’s consulting practice, leading the execution of executive compensation-related client engagements. Katie has spent over 14 years focused on strategic compensation design and planning, including annual and long-term incentives. She has significant experience working with privately held companies and has also worked with multinational companies to tailor individual solutions to meet their challenges.

Professional Involvement

Katie is an active member of The ESOP Association, the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO), WorldatWork – Total Rewards Association, and the Twin Cities Compensation Network.

Professional Experience

Prior to Chartwell, Katie held multiple client facing roles over 14 years at WTW and has worked with clients on a variety of executive compensation topics including competitive pay level benchmarking, incentive design, and pay-for-performance assessments.


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