Bertram John Schaeffer, 71, a tax lawyer and securities executive who become an expert in financial services counseling, died Friday, Nov. 22, of bladder cancer at Penn Medicine at Rittenhouse, where he had been under hospice care.
Mr. Schaeffer was diagnosed with the cancer in 2013. He underwent treatment and saw some improvement, but the illness returned in July, his family said.
At various times, he and his family had lived in Devon, Philadelphia, and Egg Harbor Township, N.J.
Mr. Schaeffer, known as “Bert,” was a partner with the firm of Ernst & Young from 1989 to 2004. In 2006, he became a managing principal in Verus Advisors LLC., a Mount Laurel investment management consulting firm for wealthy individuals and institutional clients.
He also held senior executive positions with UBS Financial Services Inc. in Philadelphia, Neuberger-Berman in New York, and RCL Advisors LLC in New York. All offer investment counseling.
While at Ernst & Young in 2000, he wrote a guide to investing geared toward colleagues in the wealth management industry and investors managing their own portfolios. The book provided strategies on money management, including mutual funds, stocks, and tax considerations.
Although health concerns forced his official retirement from Verus in 2015, he continued to advise clients until just before his death, his family said.
“He provided third-party assessments on portfolios for people, from musicians and athletes to executives,” said his friend of 40 years, William Earley.
A native of Doylestown, Mr. Schaeffer graduated in 1966 from Lansdale Catholic High School. He won a scholarship to play baseball at La Salle University. He graduated from La Salle and Wake Forest University School of Law and then earned an L.L.M. degree, the equivalent of a master’s degree, from the Temple University Beasley School of Law.
He spoke frequently on wealth management topics at conferences along the Eastern seaboard and lectured at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
Aside from work, Mr. Schaeffer was a longtime Phillies fan and a dedicated cyclist.
Even after doctors who treated him at the Cleveland Clinic warned that declining health made it unlikely he would ride again, he got back on his bike, his family said.
He enjoyed spending time in his backyard manicuring the trees and shrubs. “He made sure everything was immaculate,” said his wife, Rachel Pignatelli Schaeffer. “He knew the names of every single tree and bush. He knew about how the sun, the water, the bugs affected them.”
He and his wife spent the past two winters at their home in Bonita Springs, Fla.
Besides his wife, he is survived by stepchildren Jeanette Argir and Joseph Marchiano; his mother, Loretta Hoffer, and stepfather, George Hoffer; two sisters; four nieces; and a nephew. He was formerly married to Sherry Cardinal. They divorced.
A viewing will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Nov. 29, at the D’Anjolell-Barone Funeral Home, 908 S. Providence Rd., Wallingford. There will be a second viewing from 9 to 10:45 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 30, and an 11 a.m. funeral service, both at the funeral home. Burial is private.