Root River's Team

An investment-first mentality…

Philip W. Dobrzynski, CFA, CFP®, CPAinactive
Chief Investment Officer, Principal

Phil Dobrzynski founded Root River Capital, LLC in order to provide clients with differentiated investment products and services.  With over 20 years of financial services experience, Phil honed his skills in portfolio and wealth management, with strengths in valuation, financial analysis, and modeling.  Phil is also an experienced leader and educator, with extensive knowledge in building and creating teams and processes.  Phil’s broad knowledge of the financial industry and business know-how provides a solid foundation for building and growing a successful investment company that puts the needs and objectives of the clients at the forefront of its decision-making process. 

Prior to forming Root River, Phil was an Associate Portfolio Manager and Principal at Riverbridge Partners®.  At Riverbridge Partners®, Phil was a member of the Investment Team where he was responsible for portfolio construction, security selection, and company research across all industry sectors.  Prior to joining Riverbridge Partners® in 1998, Phil worked for Tyler, Simms & St. Sauveur, Certified Public Accountants, in both audit and tax.  Phil received his BS degree in Accounting from the Pennsylvania State University and his MBA from the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management.  He has been an Adjunct Professor at the University of Minnesota Carlson School of Management and Minnesota State University at Mankato.  Phil is a member of the CFA Institute, the CFA Society of Minnesota, the Financial Planning Association (FPA), and the Financial Planning Association of Minnesota.


Focused on research…

David B. Shepley
Portfolio Manager, Principal

David Shepley became Principal and Portfolio Manager at Root River in January 2016.  As a member of the Investment Team, David is responsible for portfolio and client management, security selection, and marketing on behalf of the company.  David has over 14 years of financial services experience, and was a portfolio manager at Arbor Capital Management LLC, prior to joining Root River.  David joined Arbor in 2004 as an equity analyst providing company research and investment recommendations to the Small Cap Growth strategy.  David co-launched Arbor’s Mid Cap Focus strategy in 2006.  David was responsible for designing the investment philosophy and implementing the investment process.  David managed portfolio construction, security selection and company research across all industry sectors.  Prior to Arbor, David was a regional surety analyst at the Chubb Group of Insurance, where he analyzed and underwrote a variety of credit risks.  David graduated in 2002, with Magna Cum Laude distinction from Gustavus Adolphus College, with a degree in Financial Economics and Political Science.  David was a member of the Gustavus student investment fund for four years and was co-president his senior year.      


Managing the details…

Melissa B. Garlington, JD
Chief Compliance Officer, Principal

Melissa Garlington joined Root River in January 2016 as Principal and Chief Compliance Officer.  Melissa is responsible for establishing and overseeing Root River’s compliance program and day to day business activity.  Prior to joining Root River, Melissa was Finance Manager and Partner at Galtere Ltd, the Manager of a commodity-based global macro hedge fund.   While at Galtere Ltd., Melissa oversaw business details related to the day-to-day management of a billion-dollar hedge fund.  She worked closely with attorneys regarding oversight of documents; with the accountants to complete annual audits and tax filings; as well as an outside compliance company to create, monitor and audit entity records.  Melissa also implemented internal controls, policies and procedures to assure compliance with applicable regulatory agencies.  Before working in the investment industry for over 9 years, Melissa worked at the MN Supreme Court, providing staff support to the Juvenile Justice Services Task Force, and in the First Judicial District as a Law Clerk.  Melissa is a licensed attorney in MN and a member of the National Society of Compliance Professionals.  She received a JD from William Mitchell College of Law, and a BA in English Literature from Wellesley College.