Executive Board

Launched in 2000, Shaking the Tree is a not-for-profit organization with a unique theatre-based approach to transforming conversations about wealth.

In addition to our Creative Team Members and Co-founders, Paul McKibbin and David Kersnar, Shaking the Tree’s Executive Board includes professionals from diverse areas of Wealth Management and Wealth Education.

Stephen McCarthy


Stephen McCarthy is a Senior Vice President of KCG Capital Advisors, a family investment office he co-founded with his late father John “Jack” McCarthy, a former Managing Partner and CIO of Lord Abbett. Mr. McCarthy has more than 40 years of diversified professional experience in the financial services industry with such firms as PaineWebber, Security Pacific, Deloitte, Citibank and Bache. He has represented his clan with the Institute for Private Investors, the Gotham Triangle and the Greenwich Roundtable and is a mentor/judge for NYU/Stern’s Annual Business Plan Competition. A former two term board member of Philanthropy NY and a trustee of his family’s foundation, Mr. McCarthy’s past two decades in the philanthropic arena have included significant projects with the COF, ASF, NCFP and SCNM. He received his BA from Wesleyan University and his MBA from NYU/Stern.

Jay Cherney, Ph.D.

Executive Board Member, Workshop Coordinator and Co-Developer

Jay Cherney, Ph.D.is a psychologist with more than 30 years of experience as a clinician, facilitator, speaker and mediator. Dr. Cherney delivers his one-day workshop, “Navigating Difficult Conversations” for a variety of corporate clients. He also offers keynote presentations on conflict management, collaboration, teambuilding and resilience.

In 2007, Dr. Cherney co-founded Wealth 360, a peer learning group for high net worth entrepreneurs. Through the power of collective intelligence and open dialogue, a Wealth 360 group generates life-changing new perspectives on the challenges facing affluent families. In consulting with advisors and high net worth clients, Dr. Cherney uses his Money Story Consult to clarify clients’ core values for more satisfying financial decisions.

Dr. Cherney is co-author of “Appreciative Team Building: Positive Questions to Bring Out the Best of Your Team” (2004). He has worked with Johnson & Johnson, AstraZeneca, Novo Nordisk and the FDA, among others. He is also a mediator for the United States Postal Service.

He earned an M.S. in clinical psychology from Hahnemann University and a Ph.D. in counseling psychology from Temple University.

Donald Kozusko

Executive Board Member

Don Kozusko is a partner in Kozusko Harris Duncan, a law firm that advises family offices, family businesses, entrepreneurs, and philanthropists. Kozusko has served as a mediator and advocate in disputes involving the control of privately owned businesses, investment ventures and family trusts. His current writings focus on the use of scenario planning in wealth management and family business planning. Earlier in his career, he was a litigator and then a key advisor to start-up ventures and private equity firms. Mr. Kozusko is an ACTEC fellow, a nationally recognized speaker and facilitator, and a graduate of Villanova University and Harvard Law School.

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