About Us

About Us

The Trusted Advocate for Private Business Owners

A Message from Our Founder:

The Ascenum team recognizes that small and mid-sized businesses are the backbone to our economy and the engine that increasingly drives economic growth. We see opportunities to improve the way private business owners and entrepreneurs seek out support during the most critical phases of their business ownership.

As Founder, I am creating Ascenum to exclusively advocate for private business owners as they pursue their dreams of building a company and realizing financial security for their family. Drawing on my years running the country’s leading provider of business valuation and sell-side M&A advisory services for privately held small and mid-sized companies, I’ve witnessed up close the difficulty private business owners faced when trying to gauge what their business is worth. I’ve heard the stories directly from these owners about the challenges and uncertainty they faced when needing to raise capital or find the right help to build their company. I’ve observed the fallout when private business owners pursued a sale of their company without the assistance of an experienced sale advisor.

Ascenum will provide our Members with digital capabilities to privately, and with full control, discover what their business is worth, connect with other business owners on our Community Platform, gain insight from features within our Learning Center, and connect through our Marketplace with Providers that match to the characteristics of the business and needs of the business owner to capitalize, grow and when the time is right, sell their company for maximum value.

Thomas J. Letarte, Founder and CEO TJ Signature

Ascenum Network Advisory Board

E.Garrett Bewkes, III

Mr. Bewkes is a Founder and Investment Committee Chair of GarMark Partners.  GarMark Partners is one of the longest-tenured managers of private junior debt and structured equity capital in North America.

Mr. Bewkes was previously Head of Corporate and Real Estate Investment for Investcorp. Mr. Bewkes is a former Co-Head of Mergers & Acquisitions, Vice Chairman of Investment Banking and member of the Board of Directors at Bear Stearns.

Lowell L. Bryan

Mr. Bryan is a former Senior Partner of McKinsey & Company, where he co-founded and led the Financial Institutions practice, led McKinsey’s Strategy practice, its Knowledge Committee, and its Organizational Design practice. As a member of McKinsey’s senior leadership team, Lowell also served on McKinsey’s board of directors and was a member of the Office of Managing Director with responsibility for overseeing all of the Firm’s industry practices. While at McKinsey, he also authored six books on a variety of banking, capital markets, global strategy and organizational topics.

Edmund A. Hajim

Mr. Hajim is Chairman of HighVista Strategies LLC, a company that manages $4b for endowments, pensions and HNW individuals.

Previous positions include Chairman and CEO of MLH Capital, L.L.C., Chairman and CEO of ING Aeltus Group and ING Furman Selz Asset Management, Co-Chairman of ING Barings, Americas Region, Chairman and CEO of Furman Selz, as well as senior management positions with Lehman Brothers, E. F. Hutton and The Capital Group.

Mr. Hajim is the Chairman Emeritus of the University of Rochester, and a recipient of the Horatio Alger award.

Jim Kozlowski

Mr. Kozlowski is a Senior Managing Director of Private Equity at Venturi Wealth Management.

Prior to joining Venturi, Mr. Kozlowski was a Co-Founder and President of TGF Management Corp., one of the most active and successful middle-market investment firms in the Southwest. Under the Texas Growth Fund and Southwest Opportunity Partners banners, he managed a series of funds totaling more than $700 million dedicated to investing in companies located in Texas and throughout the Southwest. TGF Management Corp acquired or invested in 47 middle-market companies in a variety of industries.

Previously, Mr. Kozlowski was a Managing Director at Fortis Private Capital in New York, a Vice President at Merrill Lynch Venture Capital in New York, and Director of New Business at Tenneco Ventures in Houston.