Tim Cleary

Tim Cleary
Managing Director

Tim leads Chartwell’s ownership advisory practice, helping privately-held and mature ESOP-owned companies understand, evaluate, design, and implement strategic alternatives for the next stage of the business’ life cycle. He also helps mature ESOP-owned companies establish financial disciplines to assure long-term sustainability. Tim’s legal, tax, and administrative experience allows him to design creative yet practical solutions that optimize benefits for clients. He has been helping privately-held business owners and management since 1987. 



Tim is an active member of The ESOP Association and the National Center for Employee Ownership. He is also a member of the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC), where he currently serves on the Affiliate Advisory Committee. Tim is a nationally known speaker and writer on ESOPs.



Tim started his consulting career as a corporate tax and ESOP attorney. He then led Ernst & Young’s National ESOP Consulting Practice, where he was instrumental in shaping innovative S Corporation ESOP structures. Most recently, Tim led Principal Financial Group’s ESOP Consulting Practice, one of the largest ESOP administration and consulting practices in the country.


Tim holds a Juris Doctor degree from William Mitchell College of Law in St. Paul, Minnesota. He also holds a Bachelor of Science degree in government from St. John’s University.