LOUIS W. PIERRO, Founding Partner, Pierro, Conner, & Strauss, LLC

Louis W. Pierro is the Founder and Principal of Pierro, Connor & Strauss, LLC, a law firm with offices in New York City, Albany, Long Island and additional locations, serving clients in the areas of Estate Planning, Estate and Trust Administration, Business Succession Planning, Elder Law and Special Needs Planning. Mr. Pierro is a frequent speaker across the country on legal issues relating to estate planning, elder law and business planning.

Mr. Pierro is also a Founder of ElderCounsel, a national membership organization of Elder Law and Special Needs law firms, where he now serves as a consultant. It provides proprietary document drafting software and education to over 1400-member firms in all 50 states. Most recently, he founded ApolloCare, LLC, a business that integrates home care coordination (EverHome Care Advisors), with connected home health technology (VivaLynx) providing seniors, families, and caregivers unique opportunities to live independently in their own home.

Mr. Pierro is selected by his peers for inclusion in the 2023 edition of  The Best Lawyers in America for Elder Law, and Trusts and Estates; his 15th year of recognition by Best Lawyers. He was also selected by his peers as Best Lawyers “2022 Lawyer of the Year” for Elder Law in New York’s Capital Region; an honor he also received in 2018 and 2014. He has been recognized by Best Lawyers for Elder Law and for Trusts and Estates and by Super Lawyers for 15 years, and has been selected to the Best Lawyers in America, The Best Lawyers in New York, Super Lawyers of the Hudson Valley, Top 25 Lawyers in Upstate New York, and New York Times Top Attorneys in New York. In addition, Mr. Pierro has maintained an AV preeminent rating from the Martindale-Hubbell since 2001.

Mr. Pierro is currently a member of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys; the American Bar Association, Probate and Trust Section; the NYS Bar Association Trusts and Estates and Elder Law Sections; and the Albany County Bar Association.

A graduate of Lehigh University and Albany Law School, Mr. Pierro was admitted to the New York State Bar in January of 1984, and is licensed to practice in all New York State Courts, the US Supreme Court and the Second Circuit Court of Appeals.

DAN NOLAN, President and CEO, Graypoint LLC

Dan is the CEO & President of Graypoint LLC and serves as a member of the Investment Advisory Council. Dan joined Hugh Johnson Advisors in 2010. Dan spent 28 years as a partner at The Ayco Company, L.P. providing tax, investment and financial planning advice to Ayco’s highest net worth clients. He founded and led the firm’s Special Investment Group, creating venture capital, private equity and hedge fund opportunities for the firm’s clients. Dan spent three years as Senior Vice President, Strategic Alliance at Goldman Sachs integrating Ayco into Goldman’s Private Wealth Management practice following the sale of Ayco to Goldman Sachs. He serves as trustee for Albany Law School and is a trustee of The College of Saint Rose and the Center for Disability Services Endowment Board. Dan received his undergraduate degree in Finance from the University of Albany and his JD from Albany Law School.

SEAN LEONARD, Chief Investment Officer, Graypoint LLC

Sean Leonard joined Graypoint LLC as the Chief Investment Officer in 2020 and is a member of the Investment Advisory Council. Prior to that, Sean was a Managing Director and the Chief Investment Officer for the Rockefeller Capital Management Family Office, where he worked with a wide variety of advisors, client families and institutions to solve client needs in a risk and tax efficient manner. Before Rockefeller, Sean was the Senior Vice President and Chief Investment Officer at Ayco, a Goldman Sachs Company, working with several hundred advisors to solve needs for a wide spectrum of clients starting with mass affluent up through ultra-high net worth. His previous experience includes 10 years as a buyside generalist small cap analyst. Sean earned a Bachelor of Arts of Mathematics with a concentration in Theoretical Mathematics from the University at Buffalo, an MBA from the University at Albany and is a Chartered Financial Analyst. Sean serves on the Board of Directors for the Saratoga Performing Arts Center and is a member of the JP Morgan Advisory Council.

Kevin O’Leary, CPA, Managing Director, Marvin and Company, P.C.

Kevin began his career with Marvin and Company in 1999 and became a Director in 2010. He was named Managing Director effective January 1, 2019. Kevin has nearly 20 years experience in non-profit, manufacturing and ERISA plan audits as well as corporate and personal income tax. He is also involved in the Firm’s tax department dealing with tax compliance, Form 990 issues and assisting non-profits in obtaining exempt status. Kevin also oversees the firm’s business development and marketing initiative, which includes budgeting, marketing goals and scheduling of events and participation.

Kevin previously served on the Small Business Committee for the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce, and also served as the treasurer of Capital Region Sponsor-A-Scholar. He is a past President, President-Elect, Treasurer and Secretary of the Northeast Chapter of the New York State Society of CPAs. Kevin is also very involved in the local start-up community as an investor with Eastern NY Angels and a sponsor of local events such as Start-up weekend at Grand-Slam Alley and the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering as well as many college incubator programs. He currently serves on the board of the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants (NYSSCPA).

Kevin graduated from Hartwick College in Oneonta, New York, where he received his BS in Accounting. His wife, Tara, is also a CPA and they are parents to two boys, Mason (6) and Nick (4).

GARY SANCILIO, Partner, Affinity BST Advisors

Gary Sancilio has been in the financial services industry for thirty-four years and is transforming how wealth management is done. With a background in law, Gary brings his no-nonsense style and unique perspective to counseling his clients. He knows his clients have accumulated their wealth through hard work, but may not know how to manage their assets to their fullest potential. Unlike financial service professionals who focus on product knowledge, Gary focuses on knowing his clients personally and building lasting client relationships. From there, he works with each individual or family to develop a comprehensive financial strategy and plan, and – if appropriate – to implement investing or product strategies that help families accomplish their financial objectives.

He holds his Juris Doctor degree from St. John’s University of Law. Upon admission to the New York Bar, he served as an Appellate Court Attorney, an Assistant District Attorney in New York City, and an attorney in private practice. His years of legal experience provide him with a keen awareness of integral parts of comprehensive planning: this list includes financial and estate analysis, wealth management and transfers, elder law care planning, estate administration, estate and gift taxation, and business and succession planning. He also collaboratively works with clients’ tax and legal counsel to form cohesive financial management plans. Though he is no longer a practicing attorney, he remains a member of the Trusts and Estates Section of the New York State Bar Association.

Gary began his financial services career working for John Hancock and AYCO, now a subsidiary of Goldman Sachs. In 2002, Gary created The Affinity Group, LLP, with Nick Preddice to create a new approach to client service and to provide a more comprehensive financial planning experience. Now Affinity BST Advisors, Gary continues to provide a strong and steady presence for clients.

Gary is dedicated to serving the community by supporting several local charitable organizations with his time and financial support. His current philanthropic endeavors are channeled through his active participation in the Make-A-Wish Foundation, which was established to grant wishes to children with life-threatening conditions.

DANIEL COOPER, Senior Manager, Empire Valuation Consultants, LLC

Daniel has over 15 years of valuation experience including work for estates and clients undertaking estate planning. He has valued operating companies from $1 million to several billion in sales and also has a background in appraising holding companies with different types of equity units. Beyond that work he has analyzed intellectual property rights including multiple engagements involving royalties one of which was the valuation of a well known book franchise where sales exceeded 100 million copies.

In addition, he works with companies looking at the feasibility of an ESOP and how they can source bank debt. He takes pride in working closely with the key parties (management, credit officers, and attorneys) to ensure a successful transaction and typically helps clients to obtain financing packages in the $1 million to $25 million range.

Mr. Cooper is a frequent speaker at industry events and was published by the National Center for Employee Ownership (“NCEO”) in their Guide to DOL ESOP Investigations (2019).


  • B.A. – University of Oxford, Politics, Philosophy and Economics (Major in Economics)
  • CFA Charterholder


  • The ESOP Association
  • Member of the NCEO
AARON E. CONNOR, Managing Partner, Pierro, Conner, & Strauss, LLC

Aaron Connor is a seasoned litigator, currently concentrating in the areas of guardianship, will/ trust contests and other estate related litigation. Mr. Connor is also head of the firm’s Long-Term Care Planning Department where he advises clients on how best to preserve assets for themselves and their families. Mr. Connor regularly handles complex trust and estate litigation matters and assists clients in obtaining their fair share through discovery, litigation, and negotiation. Additionally, he utilizes sophisticated estate planning techniques in the establishment of estate tax avoidance vehicles and completing charitable giving in the most tax-efficient manner.

Mr. Connor is admitted to practice in the State of New York and the United States District Court for the Northern District of New York. He is a member of the New York State Bar Association, the Albany County Bar Association and is currently an Editor for the Elder and Special Needs Law Journal.

Mr. Connor has formerly served on the New York State Bar Association Committee on Legal Education and Admission to the Bar and was a board member of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of Northeastern New York.

Mr. Connor received his Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University at Albany and his Juris Doctorate from Albany Law School. He was named a Partner in the firm in 2015.

THERESA SKAINE, Corporate Planning, Pierro, Connor & Strauss, LLC

Theresa Skaine practices in the areas of corporate law and commercial real estate law. Her clients are small to medium size companies, real estate developers, banking institutions and economic development entities.

Ms. Skaine counsels her clients in the areas of business formation and expansion, merger/acquisition transactions, contract negotiation, leasing, property purchases, financing and not-for-profit corporate regulatory compliance. Prior to her work with Pierro, Connor & Strauss, Ms. Skaine formed Skaine & Associates and was a Member of the law firm Lemery Greisler LLC and acted as managing member from September 2009 to April 2014. There she played an instrumental role in the development of several large-scale projects in the Capital Region, including the Luther Forest Technology Campus and the Great Escape Indoor Water Park.

Ms. Skaine earned a J.D. (cum laude) at Boston University School of Law and a B.A. in Political Science and French at Colgate University.

FRANK MELIA, Division Manager, Contour Mortgage

Frank Melia has worked in the financial services industry since 1990, working as a financial advisor for the first 10 years of his career.

Over the past 17 years, he has built a successful track record as a loan officer, with a focus on both residential and commercial lending. In 2007, Frank received his Certified Mortgage Planning Specialist designation from the CMPS Institute in Ann Arbor, Mich.

Today, he offers guidance on a range of lending products, such as purchase and refinance loans, reverse mortgages, commercial financing, construction loans, and portfolio lending programs.

Viewed as an expert on the mortgage industry, Frank can be heard on “Ask the Lawyer with Mike Connors,” a weekly radio program broadcast on AM 970 The Answer and AM 570 WMCA in New York City.

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