The Ward Group

Private Wealth Advisors
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Our mission is to help our clients lead happier, healthier and more purposeful lives through sound financial decision making and open communication.

Meet the Team

The private wealth advisors with Merrill Private Wealth Management are rigorously trained to help meet the specialized needs of individuals and families of wealth. We build relationships based on trust and personalized service.

Theresa B Ward

Theresa B Ward,

Managing Director

Private Wealth Manager

Jack Ward

Jack Ward,

Vice President

Private Wealth Manager

Meghan L Williams

Meghan L Williams

Private Wealth Associate

Ann  Cirullo

Ann Cirullo

Senior Private Wealth Associate

Matthew  Thompson

Matthew Thompson

Financial Advisor


Additional Resources

Joseph H McCullough

Joseph H McCullough

Trust Specialist

Merrill Lynch

Matthew Vandenack

Matthew Vandenack

Wealth Strategist

Merrill Lynch

Matthew Wesley

Matthew Wesley

Wealth Strategist

Merrill Lynch


Merrill is proud of our advisors who’ve received recognition from industry publications. We believe they are setting the standard for exemplary client service.

Theresa B Ward

Forbes’ “America’s Top Women Wealth Advisors” 2018

Forbes “Best-in-State Wealth Advisors”  2019

Jack Ward

Forbes "Best-in-State Next Generation Wealth Advisors" in 2019

Strategies designed to help you achieve your goals

As a client of Merrill Private Wealth Management, you have access to services and resources ordinarily reserved for the world’s largest institutions. We work with individuals, families spanning multiple generations, business owners and executives. Using a goals-based wealth management approach, we put our clients at the center of every personalized strategy.

Our Approach

The Ward Group

At The Ward Group, the depth and breadth of our offering reflects the elite clientele we serve and the uncommon financial opportunities their wealth presents. Led by our founder, Theresa Ward – who has consistently garnered top accolades from the industry – we are a multi-generational group that focuses quite naturally on strategies that can enhance clients’ intergenerational wealth.

Predicated on having a thorough appreciation of each client’s goals for lifestyle and legacy, we are driven by the investment, retirement, trust, philanthropic and credit needs that emerge from the complexities of significant wealth. By intent, we work with only a few dozen clients – multi-generational families, corporate executives, business owners, hedge fund and private equity general partners, family offices and other institutions that entrust us with their financial well-being.

A Commitment to Service

Merrill Private Wealth Management is committed to providing a select group of wealthy clients with highly personalized one-on-one service. When you work with us, our knowledgeable, rigorously trained private wealth advisors will gain a deep understanding of your goals, help you develop a multigenerational wealth strategy, help you monitor it and update your strategy as needed. We are committed to providing you access to the investment insights of Merrill and the banking convenience of Bank of America, and we will continue to invest in client tools and new technology to enhance your overall experience as you and your private wealth advisor pursue what’s most important to you.

Our Philosophy

We believe your unique goals should be at the center of all of your financial decisions and form the foundation of your financial strategy. Because significant wealth requires customized goals-based financial strategies, we believe in building lasting relationships with a limited number of clients, taking the time to understand your most important priorities for today, tomorrow and your long-term future. Our philosophy celebrates collaboration. Working with a team of specialists, we draw on the resources and insights of a global financial institution to create strategies that reflect your aspirations for yourself and current and future generations of your family. Finally, we believe that while significant wealth brings complex challenges, our experience, passion and perspectives can help you simplify your life.

Our Services

INVESTMENT STRATEGIES • Core Passive and Active Strategies • Boutique Investment Managers • Private Equity and Alternative Investments • Impact Investing • Retirement Income Strategies • Specialty Asset Management

CONCENTRATED STOCK MANAGEMENT • Public Executive Services • 10b5-1 Plans • Selling Programs • Block Trades • Hedging Strategies • Trust Solutions • Exchange Funds

BANKING AND LENDING • Personal Banking • Credit Cards • Fraud Protection • Cash Flow Management • Securities-Based Lending • Residential Lending • Yacht and Aircraft Financing • Hedge Fund Lending • Custom Lending Solutions

TRUST AND ESTATE PLANNING SERVICES • Estate Planning Services • Dynasty Trusts • Insurance Strategies • Charitable Trusts & Foundations • Fiduciary Investment Management • Trust Administration • Estate Settlement & Administration 
ACCESS TO FAMILY OFFICE SERVICES • Family Meeting Facilitation • Next Generation Education • Bill Pay • Income Tax Preparation & Consulting • Personalized Administration Services • Financial & Consolidated Reporting
TAX MINIMIZATION STRATEGIES • Tax-Minimizing Concentrated Stock Management • Tax-Efficient Investments • Tax-Advantaged Credit & Lending • Life Insurance • Tax Legislation Monitoring

PHILANTHROPY • Philanthropic Strategies • Charitable Grant-Making Solutions • Donor-Advised Funds • Endowment and Foundation Management & Consulting • Compliance • Governance and Succession Planning

*Some or all alternative investments may not be suitable for certain investors. Certain alternative investments carry significant risk and are not subject to the same regulatory oversight as mutual funds and other traditional investments.  For these reasons, access to alternative investments may be limited to investors who are designated as sophisticated, high-net-worth investors.

*Impact investing and/or Environmental Social Governance (ESG) investing has certain risks based on the fact that ESG criteria excludes securities of certain issuers for nonfinancial reasons and therefore, investors may forgo some market opportunities and the universe of investments available will be smaller.

Let's have a conversation

Your dedicated Merrill Private Wealth Management team is ready to help you pursue what’s most important to you.

Our Vision

For clients of substantial wealth, Merrill Private Wealth Management provides an experience that is both powerful and personal. We are dedicated to helping you pursue your goals for today while developing a wealth strategy designed to support your family members for the years to come.

A trusted one-on-one relationship
Your private wealth advisor and team of specialists work with a limited number of clients, enabling them to focus their time, training and passion on helping you simplify your personal and business finances and prepare your next generation as stewards of wealth.

Boutique-like service with the access to the investment resources of Merrill and banking convenience of Bank of America

We combine the personalized attention and feel of a smaller firm with the power and insights of a global financial institution, creating strategies tailored to your unique situation.

A relentless commitment to transparency and customized strategies

As our client, know we are working in your best interests, providing goals-based financial strategies designed to anticipate and help meet your evolving financial needs.

The Ward Group