Team

The senior professionals of Hennepin Partners have successfully completed strategic and financial transactions for lower middle-market companies nationwide.
Steve Beck
Steve Beck

Steve Beck

Managing Director

Steve Beck

Managing Director

Steve has nearly 25 years of investment banking experience executing complex sales, mergers, divestitures and recapitalizations completing over 100 transactions with an aggregate transaction value in excess of $6 billion.  Clients have included entrepreneurs, family-held businesses, private equity firms, closely-held corporations and large and small public companies.  These clients have spanned a wide variety of industries, including industrial products and services, building products, oil field services, healthcare, consumer products, and food.

Steve started his investment banking career as a partner with Belmont Associates, Inc., a boutique merchant banking operation in Minneapolis.  At Belmont, he managed projects to raise debt and equity and supported daily portfolio company operations.  In 1998, Steve transitioned to focusing entirely on sell-side M&A advisory joining Goldsmith Agio Helms, (now Lazard Middle Market).  Steve was a Managing Director and a co-head of Industrials at Lazard Middle Market before departing to co-found the Craig-Hallum M&A Group within the Craig-Hallum Capital Group where he was co-head of M&A with two of his current partners. 

In 2018, Steve co-founded Hennepin Partners when Craig-Hallum’s M&A Group combined with Quetico Partners (all former colleagues and friends from Lazard Middle Market). 

Steve graduated cum laude from Harvard University with a BA in economics. He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and two daughters.

Jim Clancy
Jim Clancy

Jim Clancy

Managing Director

Jim Clancy

Managing Director

Jim has over 20 years of investment banking and corporate development experience executing complex mergers, acquisitions, corporate carve-outs, recapitalizations and strategic-advisory transactions with aggregate transaction value in excess of several billion dollars.  Clients have included entrepreneurs and family-held businesses, private equity firms, and large and small public companies.  Jim has broad capabilities across technology and technology-enabled services, engineered products, software/SaaS, e-commerce & direct marketing, consumer products, aerospace products, networking & storage, education, and building products.

Jim began his investment banking career at Goldsmith, Agio, Helms (now Lazard Middle Market).  For nearly 15 years he led the firm’s Technology and Software practice as a Managing Director.  In 2016 Jim joined Quetico Partners as a partner.  Prior his investment banking career, Jim spent 6 years in corporate development as senior vice president at WAM!NET Inc., a global digital transport and data storage provider where he led corporate development, strategy and marketing from the company’s initial launch.  Prior to joining WAM!NET, Jim was an executive at Ceridian Corporation and General Mills, Inc. 

In 2018, Jim co-founded Hennepin Partners when Craig-Hallum’s M&A Group combined with Quetico Partners (all former colleagues and friends from Lazard Middle Market). 

Jim received an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and an undergraduate degree in economics from Moorhead State University.  Jim and his wife of over thirty years live in Minneapolis and have four children.

Jamie Frommelt
Jamie Frommelt

Jamie Frommelt

Managing Director

Jamie Frommelt

Managing Director

Jamie has over 20 years of legal and investment banking experience executing mergers, acquisitions, corporate divestitures and recapitalizations, completing nearly 100 transactions with an aggregate transaction value in excess of $5 billion.  Clients have included family-held businesses, private equity firms, entrepreneurs, closely-held corporations and large and small public companies.  These clients have spanned a wide variety of industries, including consumer products and services, industrial products, business services and healthcare.   

Jamie started his investment banking career with Goldsmith, Agio, Helms (now Lazard Middle Market) in 1999 and was most recently the head of the Consumer practice.  Jamie co-founded the Craig-Hallum M&A Group within the Craig-Hallum Capital Group where he was co-head of M&A with one of his current partners.  Jamie co-founded Hennepin Partners in 2018 with a number of former Lazard colleagues.  Prior to his investment banking career, Jamie practiced law with the law firms of Dorsey & Whitney LLP in Minneapolis and Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren s.c. in Milwaukee.  Jamie’s law practice centered in the areas of mergers and acquisitions, public and private securities offerings and general corporate law.  Jamie is a member of both the Minnesota Bar and the Wisconsin Bar and is a frequent speaker on topics relating to mergers and acquisitions.

In 2018, Jamie co-founded Hennepin Partners when Craig-Hallum’s M&A Group combined with Quetico Partners (all former colleagues and friends from Lazard Middle Market). 

Jamie received his undergraduate degree from Marquette University and received his J.D., with distinction, from the University of Iowa College of Law.  He lives in Edina, Minnesota with his wife and four children. 

R.B. Kiernat
R.B. Kiernat

R.B. Kiernat

Managing Director

R.B. Kiernat

Managing Director

R.B. has over 20 years of investment banking experience.  He has successfully arranged sales, mergers, divestitures, leveraged recapitalizations and private placement transactions with an aggregate transaction value of $2 billion.  R.B.’s clients have included entrepreneurs, family-held businesses, corporations and private equity clients.  These clients have represented a wide range of industries, including manufacturing and industrial products and services, branded consumer products, business services, and health care.

R.B. began his investment banking career at Piper Jaffray, Inc. where he last served as a Vice President of Investment Banking within the private placement and middle market M&A teams.  Prior to joining Piper Jaffray, R.B. spent six years in the reinsurance industry as an assistant vice president of E.W. Blanch Holdings’ strategic planning group.

In 2003, R.B. left Piper Jaffray to join Goldsmith Agio Helms (now Lazard Middle Market).  R.B. was a Managing Director of Lazard’s Multi-Industry Group before leaving to start Quetico Partners in 2009.   In 2018, R.B. co-founded Hennepin Partners when Craig-Hallum’s M&A Group combined with Quetico Partners (all former colleagues and friends from Lazard Middle Market).

R.B. graduated from Colby College with a BA degree in economics and Spanish.  He holds an MBA degree from the Curtis L. Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota with an emphasis in finance and strategic management.  R.B. and his wife of over 20 years live in Minneapolis with their son and daughter.

Gary T. O’Brien
Gary T. O’Brien

Gary T. O’Brien

Managing Director

Gary T. O’Brien

Managing Director

Gary has arranged M&A transactions for entrepreneurs, private equity groups, and corporations engaged in manufacturing, distribution, and business services.  In addition to business sales and recapitalizations, he has also handled the divestiture of non-core holdings for corporate clients including Chef Solutions, Valspar Corporation, Donaldson Company, Quad/Graphics Inc., and AAF-McQuay International.

Gary began his career in commercial real estate at CB Richard Ellis before moving to Dallas-based Trammell Crow Company where he developed commercial properties and rose to the rank of Partner.  At various time he oversaw Trammell Crow’s operations in Minnesota, Ohio and Kentucky.  Gary then worked in institutional fixed income and structured finance at Dain Bosworth before joining boutique M&A advisor Benakis & Company in 1995.  He acquired Benakis upon the death of its founder in 1998.

In 2005, Goldsmith Agio Helms acquired Benakis to establish a service platform for the lower middle market.  At Goldsmith the team grew in size and scope.  Following Lazard’s acquisition of Goldsmith in 2007 and its decision to focus on larger clients, Gary and his colleagues left in 2009 to form Quetico Partners LLC.  In 2018, Gary co-founded Hennepin Partners when Craig-Hallum’s M&A Group combined with Quetico Partners.  The founders of Hennepin are former colleagues and friends from Lazard Middle Market.

Gary holds a BS degree in Industrial Engineering from Iowa State University.  He is a former trustee of Carleton College and an Emeritus Trustee of the Science Museum of Minnesota.  He and his wife live in Minneapolis.

Neil Weinstein
Neil Weinstein

Neil Weinstein

Managing Director

Neil Weinstein

Managing Director

Neil has more than 15 years of mergers and acquisitions transaction experience across a variety of industries, including manufacturing, industrials, business and industrial services and consumer products.  He has completed dozens of transactions, totaling more than $5 billion in aggregate transaction value.

Neil began his investment banking career at Piper Jaffray where he was a Vice President before becoming a Director at Lazard Middle Market.  Neil then became a Managing Director within Craig-Hallum’s M&A Group.  He has worked on sell-side assignments for both public and private companies, leveraged buyouts, corporate divestitures, private placements, fairness opinions and restructuring assignments.  Before becoming an investment banker, Neil was a senior financial analyst at Northwest Airlines, and had extensive experience in legislative and communications strategy.

In 2018, Neil co-founded Hennepin Partners when Craig-Hallum’s M&A Group combined with Quetico Partners (all former colleagues and friends from Lazard Middle Market).

Neil received an MBA from the Curtis L. Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota and a BA from the University of Pennsylvania.  He lives in Minneapolis with his wife and two children.

Matthew Fitzmaurice
Matthew Fitzmaurice

Matthew Fitzmaurice

Managing Director

Matthew Fitzmaurice

Managing Director

Matthew has more than 25 years of investment banking, capital formation and institutional investment management experience in the emerging growth and growth sectors of the global economy.  For the past 10 years, he has focused on companies driving efficiencies in the Agriculture, Water, Energy and Industrial sectors.  His investment banking experience includes M&A and private company capital raises. 

Matthew joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018.  Prior to Hennepin Partners, Matthew was a senior member of the M&A Group at Craig-Hallum Capital, alongside other current Hennepin Partner colleagues. 

Prior to his investment banking career, Matthew managed institutional capital in public market hedged and long only funds as well as investments in private companies through asset management firms he founded or held senior positions which include EcoAlpha Asset Management, AWJ Partners, Talaria Partners and Amerindo Investment Advisors.  Matthew started his career at Minneapolis investment bank Wessels, Arnold and Henderson.

Matthew holds a B.A. from Georgetown University and a Juris Doctorate degree from Georgetown University Law Center. He resides in Minneapolis with his wife Adrienne and children Jack, William, Hazel and Henry.

Kevin Janicki
Kevin Janicki

Kevin Janicki

Director

Kevin Janicki

Director

Kevin has almost 20 years of investment banking transaction experience executing sales, mergers, divestitures, and leveraged recapitalizations, advising on nearly 30 transactions with an aggregate transaction value in excess of $2 billion.  Clients have included entrepreneurs, family-held businesses, private equity firms, corporations, and large and small public companies.  These clients have represented a wide range of industries, including manufacturing and industrial products and services, branded consumer products, business services, and health care.

Kevin started his investment banking career with Goldsmith, Agio, Helms (now Lazard Middle Market).  In 2014, Kevin rejoined several former colleagues from Lazard Middle Market in the Mergers and Acquisitions advisory practice of Craig-Hallum Capital Group.  Kevin joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018.  Prior to his investment banking career, Kevin was an associate with Evensen Dodge, Inc., a Minneapolis-based advisory firm focused on providing quantitative analysis, refinancing strategies, and debt issuance consulting to state and local governments.

Kevin holds a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame and a Master in Public Policy degree from Harvard University.  He resides in Hugo, Minnesota with his wife and three kids.

Jared Rance
Jared Rance

Jared Rance

Director

Jared Rance

Director

Jared has more than a decade of investment banking transaction experience executing complex sales, mergers, acquisitions, divestitures, take-private transactions and leveraged recapitalizations, advising on 20+ transactions with an aggregate transaction value in excess of $2 billion.  Jared’s clients have included entrepreneurs, family-held businesses, private equity firms, closely-held corporations and large and small public companies spanning a wide variety of industries, including industrial products and services, manufacturing, healthcare, building products, automotive, business services, consumer and oil & gas.

Jared joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018.  Prior to Hennepin Partners, Jared was a senior member of the M&A Group at Craig-Hallum Capital, alongside other current Hennepin Partner colleagues.  Jared started his investment banking career with Lazard Middle Market, where he was a Vice President in the industrial practice group focusing on middle market merger and acquisition advisory.  Prior to his investment banking career, Jared was a senior financial analyst with Ford Motor Company, where he focused on evaluating and identifying underperforming automotive component suppliers and providing financial and operational advice.

Jared received an MBA from the University of Michigan and a B.A. (economics) from Coe College, graduating magna cum laude.  He resides in Eden Prairie, MN with his wife and daughter.

Chad Starman
Chad Starman

Chad Starman

Director

Chad Starman

Director

Chad has over 15 years of investment banking transaction experience executing sales, mergers, divestitures, leveraged recapitalizations, go-private transactions, initial public offerings and follow-on public offerings.  He has completed nearly 40 transactions with an aggregate transaction value in excess of $4 billion.  Chad has represented entrepreneurs, family-held businesses, private equity firms, corporations and large and small public companies.  His clients have spanned multiple industries, including consumer branded products, retailers, restaurants, food, manufacturing products and services, building products, and business services.

Chad began his investment banking career with Dain Rauscher Wessels where he focused on equity offerings and M&A primarily for public companies in various consumer sectors. After RBC Capital Markets acquired Dain Rauscher Wessels, Chad remained with RBC for several years executing a wide variety of transactions.  Later, Chad joined Goldsmith Agio Helms, (now Lazard Middle Market) where he focused exclusively on M&A.  In 2013 Chad became a senior member of the M&A Group at Craig-Hallum Capital.  Chad joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018. 

Chad graduated from the University of St. Thomas with an MBA.

Ryan Peters
Ryan Peters

Ryan Peters

Vice President

Ryan Peters

Vice President

Ryan has over six years of investment banking experience and supports Hennepin Partners in its M&A and capital raising transactions. His transaction experience includes working on sell-side and buy-side M&A assignments for a number of industries.

Ryan began his career at Ameriprise Financial, where he supported the acquisitions of independently-owned financial advisory practices. He then joined Thrivent Financial, where he helped to periodically value Thrivent’s portfolio of private investments, and also provided trade support for equities, corporate and sovereign bonds, mortgage-backed securities, commercial paper, structured securities, derivatives, and syndicated bank loans. Ryan earned a BSB in Finance from the Curtis L. Carlson School of Management at the University of Minnesota.  He is a CFA Charterholder. Ryan lives with his wife and their two sons in Minneapolis, MN.

Brett Larsen
Brett Larsen

Brett Larsen

Associate

Brett Larsen

Associate

Brett supports Hennepin Partners in its M&A transactions, working on sell-side M&A assignments for several industries, including manufacturing products, building products and business services.

Brett joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018. Prior to Hennepin Partners, Mr. Larsen was an Associate with the M&A Group at Craig-Hallum Capital.

Brett received  a B.A. (finance) from the University of St. Thomas, graduating summa cum laude.

Paul Elbow
Paul Elbow

Paul Elbow

Associate

Paul Elbow

Associate

Paul supports Hennepin Partners in its M&A and capital raising transactions. His transaction experience includes working on sell-side M&A assignments for a variety of industries.

Paul joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018. Prior to Hennepin Partners, Paul was a member of Quetico Partners, alongside other current colleagues of Hennepin Partners. Paul began his career at Best Buy Corporate with their Demand Forecasting team. In this role he generated sales forecasts for products in the laptop accessories, MP3 hardware, and health and fitness categories.

Paul received a B.A. (economics) from Carleton College.

Jeff Peterka
Jeff Peterka

Jeff Peterka

Associate

Jeff Peterka

Associate

Jeff has nearly 5 years of investment banking experience executing sales, mergers, divestitures and go-private transactions for entrepreneurs, family-held businesses, private equity firms and publically held companies. His client base comprises representation from multiple industries, including consumer branded products, retailers, manufacturing products, healthcare products and services, building products and business services.

Jeff joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018. Prior to Hennepin Partners, Jeff was a member of the M&A Group at Craig-Hallum Capital, alongside other current colleagues of Hennepin Partners. Jeff started his investment banking career with Imperial Capital, a Los Angeles based, full-service investment bank, where he primarily focused on entrepreneur and privately owned consumer businesses, as well as healthcare and real estate transactions. Prior to Imperial Capital, Mr. Peterka spent nearly 4 years in the audit practice of Deloitte and Touche where he served middle market clients in the healthcare, financial services, construction, and oil and gas sectors.

Jeff received a B.A. (Accounting and Pre-Business Law) from Ohio University.

Will Hersman
Will Hersman

Will Hersman

Analyst

Will Hersman

Analyst

Will supports Hennepin Partners in its M&A transactions, working on sell-side assignments for several industries, including manufacturing, business services, consumer, healthcare, agriculture, and aerospace and defense.

Will joined Hennepin Partners as a part of its founding in 2018. Prior to Hennepin Partners, he joined the M&A Group at Craig-Hallum Capital as an analyst in 2016. Prior to his investment banking career, Mr. Hersman worked as a Financial Analyst at Medtronic, where he focused on analyzing operational improvements and post-acquisition synergy initiatives.

Will received a B.A. (finance) from the University of St. Thomas. During his undergraduate study, Will was a member of the men’s varsity football and lacrosse teams.

Teddy Ransom
Teddy Ransom

Teddy Ransom

Analyst

Teddy Ransom

Analyst

Teddy supports Hennepin Partners in its M&A transactions, working on sell-side assignments for several industries, including healthcare, manufacturing products, building products and business services.

Teddy joined Hennepin Partners as part of its founding in 2018. Previously, he joined the M&A Group at Craig-Hallum Capital as an Analyst in 2017. Prior to joining as an analyst, Mr. Ransom was a Summer Analyst with the Craig-Hallum M&A Group, where he focused on advisory work in the lower middle market.

Teddy received a B.A. (finance) from the University of St. Thomas.

John Veil
John Veil

John Veil

Analyst

John Veil

Analyst

John supports Hennepin Partners in its M&A transactions, working on sell-side assignments for several industries, including business services, manufacturing, agriculture, and industrial products.

John joined Hennepin Partners in 2018. Prior to Hennepin Partners, Mr. Veil was a Summer Analyst at Freeland Briese, where he contributed to a variety of sell-side M&A transactions in the lower middle market.

John received a B.A (Finance) from the University of St. Thomas. During his undergraduate study, John served as Team Captain of the Men’s Varsity Basketball team.