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Why We're Different



Our fee-only approach means you get objective advice, not a sales pitch. We do not accept commissions or any outside compensation. You pay us directly so you don’t have to worry that the advice you receive might be influenced by other agendas. We can exclusively focus on finding the best solutions for your needs. Another word for that is “Fiduciary.” We put your interests first.


An unusual feature of our practice is that we do not have investment balance minimums nor do we “gather your assets.” Instead, we use the accounts you have or, if they are not serving your best interests, we open retail accounts for you at prominent low-cost investment providers. We never "touch" your money. We help you manage the accounts yourself. You retain complete control over your investments at all times.


Your financial life involves more than just the stocks, bonds and mutual funds in your portfolio. At Taconic Advisors we consider all aspects of your financial picture and offer guidance with:

  • Tax planning
  • Risk Analysis/Insurance Review
  • Real Estate
  • Annual Spending Plans and Budgets
  • Goal Assessment
  • Estate Planning
  • Investment Review, Portfolio Design and Implementation
  • Consolidating and Organizing Accounts


No two clients are exactly alike, so your financial plan should be as unique as you are. After getting to know you and your goals, we take the time to build a plan together and educate you along the way so you can better understand what is happening with your money.

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Chip is a NAPFA-Registered Financial Advisor, Certified Financial Planner™ Professional and founder of Taconic Advisors, Inc. He has been spreading the gospel about the benefits of financial planning without financial product sales to the mid-Hudson Valley since 2002.

Chip received training in all areas of personal financial planning through Marist College and specialized training in financial planning techniques through the Alliance of Comprehensive Planners (ACP).  He received his B.A. from Colgate University in 1974 and holds a graduate degree in Accounting from New York University. He was trained in accounting and finance at KMPG Peat Marwick in New York City and had over 10 years financial management experience before entering the field of personal financial planning.

He tries to give back to his community relationships as much as possible. He has chaired the Board of ACP and he is a member of the Dutchess County Regional Chamber of Commerce and sits on the Chamber Foundation Board of Directors. In the past he sat on the Board of Mental Health Association, organized the annual American Heart Association Heart Ball, and sat on the governance body for his parish. 

Chip is married to Karen Hansen Simon, a happily retired ex-CPA partner, formerly with Sedore and Company, CPAs, LLP. They enjoy vacation travel and community events together, as well as the company of their children, Scott & Emma.  They do tend to go separate ways with hobbies, however.  Chip enjoys cooking and golf while Karen leans toward tennis, mah-jongg, and taking the lead on doing the dishes.

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Meredith graduated from Duke University in 2001 and began her financial services career in 2005 in Richmond, Virginia. After experiencing several significant family events she was inspired to develop a career helping individuals and families meet their financial goals.

She completed the rigorous exams for the Series 7, Series 66 and Life and Health Insurance licenses and began working with individuals, families and small businesses. But, as Meredith became more experienced in her field, she also became more concerned with the typical role of a financial advisor as “salesperson” and “asset gatherer” and the lack of focus on clients' financial goals.

In 2009 Meredith became a Certified Financial Planner™ and joined a fee-only wealth management company where she worked as the lead advisor and created and monitored comprehensive financial plans, tax projections and their corresponding investment strategies.  In 2011 Meredith moved to the Hudson Valley to be closer to family and joined a large wealth management company providing financial planning services to clients employed at local non-profit organizations. 

In 2016, Meredith became a co-owner and shareholder in Taconic Advisors. She is excited to help steer the future direction of the company and bring more awareness of fee-only planning to the community.

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After graduating from Adelphi University in 2008, John began his career in finance on the precipice of the U.S. financial crisis.  John obtained the Series 7, Series 6 and Life Accident and Health licenses while working for a large financial services company in the heart of Manhattan. 

John gained invaluable experience supporting a successful advisory team. He had the opportunity to interact with thousands of clients and helped to coordinate billions of dollars in assets.  However, after working in the industry for nearly a decade, it became obvious that the success of the company’s clients would often come second to that of their advisors.  With that understanding, John decided it was time to go in search of a new paradigm, and so he moved from Manhattan to the Hudson Valley in August of 2016.

Luckily, his search was brief, and in March 2017 he joined Taconic Advisors as the Financial Planning Assistant to Charles “Chip” Simon and Meredith Briggs.  John is absolutely thrilled to have found the company of like-minded individuals and he looks forward to obtaining his CFP® designation.

John lives with his astonishingly wonderful wife, Megan, in Beacon, NY.  They enjoy traveling, spending time outdoors and exploring all that the Hudson Valley offers.    

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Jacob Morris graduated from Oberlin College in 2002, and has lived in New York City for over a decade. He is thrilled to be a part of the Taconic team.  Jacob’s passion for financial planning stems from a personal family experience and a desire to provide fiduciary, sustainable, and holistic advice.  Taconic Advisors embraces the same commitment to client care and ethical standards that first inspired him to become a financial planner.

Jacob is a graduate of NYU’s Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning program, and is in the process of completing his CFP® certification, having passed his CFP® Exam in March of 2017. He is an active member of the New York City chapter of the Financial Planning Association, and has performed extensive volunteer work throughout the boroughs. He was the recipient of the inaugural CFP® Exam Fee scholarship award through the FPA of NY for his contributions to the chapter and financial planning community, and is a member of the FPANY Pro Bono and Public Awareness committees. 

Jacob was recently invited to speak at the Science Industry and Business Library in Manhattan as part of their Money Matters education series. Jacob’s wonderful wife Whitney is a writer, and in their spare time, the two of them enjoy cooking vegetarian food, learning to garden, and exploring the great outdoors. They are big fans of the Hudson Valley, and look forward to getting involved in the community.

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Karen began her career in higher education in 1979 when, fresh out of Hartwick College, she was hired as a Financial Aid Counselor at Marist College. Within two years, she became the Director, expanding the staff and managing a budget of 26 million dollars. (That was a lot of money, at the time - especially for a 24 year old!) In 1988 Karen moved to Vassar College as an Assistant Director of Financial Aid. There she worked for her former boss on a 10-month contract and relished her summers off!  While at Vassar she created a new office for Student Employment where she was responsible for managing jobs, placement and payroll for over 1500 students.  Karen ‘retired’ from higher education in December 2005.

After a year of being a gym rat (and babysitting for family) Karen was a bit bored. She always liked numbers and her checking account wasn’t all that interesting.  She mentioned this to Chip’s wife, Karen, who suggested that he speak to her about a role at Taconic Advisors, and the “Most Esteemed Assistant” was born. Karen started with Taconic Advisors in the spring of 2007. She’s been happily playing with numbers ever since and has developed the role of Administrative Manager.

Karen met her husband, Stephen, while she was at Marist. Stephen is now retired from a successful career in the law and they split their time between Poughkeepsie and their lake house, Fairwinds, on Schroon Lake. They enjoy sailing (him) biking (her) and gardening together. And what a garden!  It is built on a hillside, predominantly shade, entirely perennial, mostly native and features almost 150 varieties of hosta. They love to entertain friends and family and believe they are the luckiest two people on the planet.

Megan Hildebrand Photo Megan Hildebrand Hover Photo
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Megan Hildebrand

Megan Hildebrand

Megan began her career in nonprofit development after completing her master’s degree in Fundraising and Philanthropy from New York University. She has had over a decade-long career as a Director of Development for organizations throughout New York City, including managing two of Brooklyn’s largest YMCAs. In her last role, Megan worked for a Brooklyn charter school that focuses on diversity, inclusion and social justice--a mission that is very important to her.

While in Brooklyn, Megan met her husband, Andrew, and successfully convinced him to move to her hometown of Saugerties. Andrew is the artist of the family with a career in motion design. After a long career in development it was time for a change. Megan joined Taconic Advisors in 2019 and is excited to be part of a team with such strong dedication to its clients.

As Hudson Valley residents, Megan and Andrew enjoy hiking, live music, cooking and eating at locally-owned restaurants. As new parents, they wish they could do more hiking, live music, cooking and eating at locally owned restaurants, but are very happy raising their young son and growing as a family.