Wise Counsel is a trusted thought-partner
to families with wealth, family offices, and executives.

Our nonprofit think-tank, Wise Counsel Research

Creates award-winning educational resources related to wealth, philanthropy, and family enterprise
Designs and delivers outstanding educational programs, on topics such as giving within families, developing the rising generation,
family trusts, and women and wealth.


Our for-profit consultancy, Wise Counsel Research Associates helps


  • Design successful family meetings and retreats
  • Communicate estate plans
  • Identify shared values and engage rising generation members
  • Think through decisions to sell or keep family businesses.

Family Offices

  • Develop governance structures for family trusts or private trust companies
  • Prepare rising generation family members to serve as trustees or on the boards of family councils, businesses, or foundations.

Advisory Firms

  • Offer high quality training programs for advisors on the qualitative aspects of wealth management
  • Design compelling thought-leadership programs
  • Provide consultation to client families on the family dynamics of wealth.


  • Design organizational strategy
  • Develop high-potential leaders
  • Enhance employee and team engagement.

Click on each image to meet our associates. 

Our most recent books

"... a thoughtful book about 'giving well,' providing a practical yet philosophical road-map to ensure that intra-family giving will have the most positive effects not just on the recipients but also on the person making the gift." Trusts & Estates

"This book speaks directly to individuals struggling to find their own voice in the family enterprise ... The bite-size chapters are easy to absorb, and there are three workshop strategies at the end to help you get started with the critical conversations." Sara Hamilton, CEO, Family Office Exchange

"Trusts will survive into the 21st century only so long as they are administered by persons of principle. As a practical matter, what does that mean? Family Trusts does an admirable job of answering that question, and in prose that will be readily understandable not only to the trust professional but also to the family member new to the 'trustscape.'"  Prof. Charles Rounds, Suffolk University School of Law

Featured Videos

Credit: Boston Estate Planning Council

Credit: Boston Estate Planning Council

Credit: Boston Estate Planning Council

Why we speak about "rising" rather than "next," and the four challenges that the rising generation face, especially amid wealth.

Why do so many of the "gifts" we make fail to achieve what we hoped for? The distinction of "gifts with spirit" versus "transfers" has helped people around the world rethink their gifts and find joy in giving.

Jay's insistence on understanding and avoiding the proverb "shirtsleeves to shirtsleeves in three generations" has been at the foundation of the field of family wealth for over three decades.

Featured Research
The 100 Year Families Study

Led by Dennis Jaffe, this international project focuses on families who have successfully transitioned global enterprises across three generations. Based on interviews with over 80 families, its reports include Three Pathways to Evolutionary SurvivalGood Fortuneand most recently Releasing the Potential of the Rising Generation.

WCRA by the Numbers

Over the last ten years, our associates have

  • Worked with over 175 families or family businesses
  • With average net worth of $629 million US
  • And median net worth of roughly $500 million US
  • As well as almost all of the top 20 financial institutions worldwide
  • And 25 boutique wealth management firms

Featured White Paper
Prenuptial Agreements