The Hill Group



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

Jeffrey B Hill

Forbes “Best-in-State Wealth Advisors”  2018 & 2019

Meet the Team

Supported by the global resources of Merrill, our team is comprised of talented and experienced individuals committed to building strong client relationships based on trust and personalized service.

Additional Resources

The following specialists do not make securities recommendations. Please contact your Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisor if you have questions about how a specialist might be able to assist you.

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Patrick Connelly

Wealth Management Banking Specialist

Joshua E Schneider

Joshua E Schneider

Senior Wealth Management Lending Officer

Christopher M Caradec

Christopher M Caradec

Trust Specialist

Where do we begin? It starts with you.

At Merrill Lynch Wealth Management, your financial advisor focuses on the things you care about most- family, goals and priorities - even as they change over the years.

Understanding Your Life


For decades, we have delivered our financial acumen, deep devotion and personal commitment of care to affluent client families in Mercer County, Bucks County and in more than 20 states across the nation. Many clients have been with us for generations – including active and retired farmers, business owners who’ve had liquidity events, entrepreneurs, corporate executives, widows and non-profit organizations.

At The Hill Group, we have “fished as a family” for years and know that a fisherman’s patience is in our blood. That’s why we spend significant time listening to clients (what they say and may not say) – not just at the outset of each relationship, but frequently – to review changes in clients’ lives, their goals, and the markets. We want to appreciate what’s meaningful to clients as new opportunities and challenges arise. What are their concerns and ambitions for themselves and their families?

Now, as a multi-generational team, it’s even more natural for us to work with generations of clients – their growing and adult children, and often, their elderly parents. By “bringing all stakeholders to the table” (when appropriate), we are better able to develop integrated approaches (from investment and retirement planning, to liability management, tax minimization and estate planning strategies).

There are no shortcuts to providing superior wealth management. By managing investment risk and clients’ expectations, we can help them enjoy positive and enduring benefits. Given the opportunity, we would like to do the same for you.

Our Philosophy
At The Hill Group, we believe that clients appreciate the blend of our team’s energy and more than 100 years of cumulative wealth management experience. This uncommon synergy allows us to bridge generational gaps and talk comfortably with client families ­– about how to view the responsibilities and opportunities of family wealth.

We also believe:

• Our honesty, sincerity and transparency allow clients to trust the advice and guidance we offer, and that we’re working diligently on their behalf – not for ourselves.

• Talking frequently and thoughtfully with clients helps us update them on progress being made toward stated goals – and update ourselves on changes in clients’ lives and outlooks.

• It’s incumbent on us to educate clients about the strategy they’ve agreed upon and their role in following it.

• Removing a client’s emotion is critical to being an effective financial advisor. To accomplish this, we explain the strategy behind their portfolio’s formulation, as well as what they own and why. As a result, we find that market volatility is less likely to cause them undue concern and worry.

• Coordinating with clients’ other advisors allows us to align efforts and allow for optimal tax minimization and estate planning strategies that span generations. We also focus on liability management – looking at ways that clients can benefit from access to specialists at Bank of America, N.A. for residential, commercial and securities-based lending.

• Offering simple explanations are the best way to explain things – regardless of how sophisticated or complex a strategy may be. We are not here to show clients how smart we are. Instead, we are passionate about helping clients feel informed and comfortable with where they stand and what they can expect moving forward.
Our Multi-Generational Approach
Born into a family of longtime Trentonians, our two experienced wealth management advisors (Jeff Hill and Ken Hill) were raised in Mercer County and continue to be well known in the area. Their great-grandfather was an entrepreneur, who founded a commercial refrigeration company in 1889. That firm still bears The Hill family name. Each summer, Jeff and Ken held jobs in the factory (on the assembly lines), along with hundreds of full-time employees.

Honesty and hard work were principles taught to Jeff and Ken from an early age. Those qualities guide the entire Hill Group today and characterize our devotion to treating client families like members of our own.

The bedrock of our process is developing an intimate appreciation of how clients view their wealth – and the opportunities, responsibilities and challenges that come with it. Once purpose is defined and family values (and dynamics) are understood, we evaluate distinct aspects of clients’ wealth. In many cases, we find that a previous advisor may not have been as forward-looking in identifying issues and opportunities related to trusts, insurance and other key areas.

Through active listening, we learn. And by learning, we can show clients how to make wise financial decisions for themselves and generations to come. At The Hill Group, we’re as driven as the clients we serve and truly care about each of them.
What Clients Can Expect
At The Hill Group, we “serve people, not just their portfolios.” That’s why we need to know what makes you tick financially and emotionally. Each of us is passionate about we do – and appreciating what you think, feel, and hope to accomplish. We strive to surpass your expectations with a degree of acumen and attention that is unlike anything you’ve experienced previously. Going the extra mile for you is never going out of our way.

• In addition to your most cherished goals, we will evaluate your risk tolerance, need for liquidity, and personal timeline. We may also remind you that it’s “a good time to invest” – as long as you have reasonable, long-term expectations.

• Using internal and external research, we would typically diversify your portfolio across asset classes, sectors and borders (based on several criteria) with attention paid to mitigating risk and optimizing cost- and tax-efficiencies.

• To craft tax-minimization and estate-planning strategies and help preserve your wealth for generations, we can coordinate with your CPA and attorney – and even join you for meetings in their offices.

• We are empathetic and sensitive to your needs – especially when you’re faced with life’s most formidable challenges: a serious illness, the loss of a spouse, a change in job status, or even a transition to retirement. We encourage you to to contact us with questions, even if they’re unrelated to financial matters.

• When we meet with you, we always try to educate about relevant strategies and situations.

• We aim to fill holes in your financial picture and help you pass along wealth and wisdom, to people you love.  

When we look at ourselves in the mirror each morning, we must be sure that we’re doing all the right things for clients. At The Hill Group, we look forward to bringing you the insights of Wall Street and the values of Main Street.
Focus On High-Net-Worth Individuals and Business Owners

We're fully versed in the many issues that affect wealth management. No matter what your short- and long-term goals may be, We'll begin by getting to know you as we explore the following seven priorities together:

  • Health: Managing healthcare expenses, now and in the future
  • Home: Upsizing, downsizing, remodeling or buying a vacation home
  • Family: Taking care of your family and other people in your life
  • Leisure: Spending your free time in meaningful ways
  • Giving: Volunteering, mentoring and giving to charities
  • Work: Working in retirement, selling or starting a business
  • Finance: Bringing it all together; defining your financial goals
We work closely with other professionals to help clients pursue their wealth management goals, drawing on the investment insights of Merrill and offering access to the banking convenience of Bank of America as we do so.


Our years of experience through multiple market fluctuations have helped us understand that we can help you pursue your goals by being consistent in our approach. We'll work with you to build a portfolio strategy that helps you pursue your goals - no matter the financial environment. We'll take into account your objectives, time horizon and liquidity needs and, perhaps most important, your sensitivity to risk and investment personality.

Your Financial Strategy

We offer you access to the investing insights of Merrill, as well as banking, trust and fiduciary services from Bank of America to help you pursue your goals. We will work to help you stay on track, regardless of what the markets are doing.

Taking care of your family and other people in your life
  • Trust & Estate Services2
  • Education Funding Strategies1
  • Insurance3
Planning for healthcare expenses now and in the future
  • Long-term Care Insurance3
  • Health Savings Account2
  • Disability Insurance3
Upsizing, downsizing, remodeling or buying a vacation home
  • Home Loans2
  • Home Equity Lines of Credit2
  • Securities-Based Lending2
  • Credit Cards2
Working in retirement, selling or starting a business
  • Bank of America Business Banking2
  • Exchange Funds1
  • Concentrated Stock Management1
  • Succession Planning1
Spending your free time in meaningful ways
  • Credit Cards2
  • Securities-Based Lending2
  • Structured Lending2
Volunteering, mentoring others and giving to charities
  • Donor-Advised Funds2
  • Private Foundations2
  • Charitable Trusts2
Using your finances to bring it all together
  • Merrill Lynch Investment Accounts1
  • Investment Advisory Accounts1
  • Alternative Investments1
  • Exchange-Traded Funds1
  • Mutual Funds1
  • Closed-end Funds1
  • Fixed Income Products1
  • Options1
  • Annuities3
  • Impact Portfolios1
  • Market-Linked Investments1
  • Securities-Based Lending2
  • Margin1
  • Home Loans2
  • Bank of America Checking and Savings Accounts2
  • Credit Cards2
  • Online Account Access1,2

1Investment products are offered by Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated.
2Banking products are offered by Bank of America, N.A.
3Insurance and annuity products offered through Merrill Lynch Life Agency Inc.

Staying on Track

We understand that both your life and the financial markets can change over time. By periodically checking in to discuss changes in your life and revisiting your financial strategy, our goal is to help you stay on track to achieve what's most important to you.

Regular reviews to help you stay on track
Regular reviews to help you stay on track

We'll meet with you periodically to review your goals and the progress you’ve made toward reaching them. We'll also discuss any adjustments needed to your financial strategy to help you stay on course.

    Monitoring changes in your life and to your goals
    Monitoring changes in your life and to your goals

    Your life and goals change. We can help you keep track of these changes so they can be reflected in your financial strategy.

    Access to what you need, when you need it

    MyMerrill is your online destination for access to your financial information, secure communications, and a robust offering of tools and capabilities

    Your advisor is a click away within our site or mobile apps

    You can manage account security with our customizable security capabilities such as touch ID, one time passcode, and other security features

    Access to your complete financial life is available with My Financial Picture, Merrill's asset aggregation tool

    • Your advisor is never more than a click away within our site or mobile apps
    • Manage account security with our customizable security capabilities such as touch id, one time passcode, and other security features
    • Access to your complete financial life is available with My Financial Picture, Merrill's asset aggregation tool

    *Peace of mind is an aspirational state of mind that clients hope to achieve. There are no guaranteed results following completion of the Goals-Based Wealth Management process because markets can fluctuate and investments can lose value. Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisors work with clients to help them understand how the goals based wealth management process can help to address their concerns, financial situation and priorities.

    Let’s Have a Conversation

    Helping you reach your goals starts with getting to know you personally. Through understanding what matters most to you, we can help you create a financial strategy that reflects your personality. Only then can we offer an approach that is built around your life priorities and the ongoing advice you need to help you manage fluctuations in the market and changes in your life. Let’s work together to help you achieve your goals.

    Why Merrill Lynch?

    As Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisors, we will sort through the financial complexities of your life, helping you build a customized investment strategy to pursue your goals.


    We put you first, every day.
    Learn more about the dedicated one-on-one relationship you can have with a Merrill Lynch Wealth Management Advisor.

    Personalized advice from a dedicated financial advisor.

    Getting to know you is our primary goal.

    A comprehensive approach, built around your life’s priorities.

    Drawing from our experience and the best thinking of Merrill, we will build a strategy that reflects your unique needs, priorities and financial situation.

    Adjusting your plan as your life and the markets change.

    We will work to help you stay on track, regardless of what the markets are doing.