Our Team


Joe Carfagno

President and Founder

The son of a small business owner who worked side-by-side with his father from a young age, Joe is keenly aware of what it takes to run a successful enterprise. He believes that small business owners deserve the opportunity to focus on the things they love to do, not what they have to do, and is passionate about leveling the playing field for them.

A visionary and dynamic leader, Joe has worked in payroll and PEO his entire career. He started with one of the corporate giants before co-founding his own firm in 2006, developing it into the fastest-growing PEO in New Jersey.

Today, he is the proud founder of CLEAR–an enterprise with a better, more responsive service model; one finely tuned to provide small businesses with speed and quality.

Endowed with a fighting spirit, Joe dreamed of being a boxer but opted for business, where his drive and work ethic serves clients well. He holds dual degrees in Marketing and Economics from Temple University. He is passing on to his two daughters lessons in hard work, discipline, and determination—along with a love of the Dallas Cowboys. When Joe isn’t helping clients, he enjoys driving his 1991 Alfa Romeo Spider, cooking Sunday dinners, and of course, watching football.


Jim Hahl

Chief Operating Officer

It’s up to Jim to ensure that clients receive the best service CLEAR can deliver, and no one knows better than he what that looks like. He is an expert in PEOs, human resources, client service, insurance and employee benefits, with a deep understanding of labor laws and compliance issues.

Jim sets the high standards every CLEAR team member must meet, developing processes, procedures and metrics to ensure success and continuous improvement. He believes that if you’re not growing, you’re going backwards—a philosophy CLEAR brings to every clients’ business.

Success starts with having the right team and the right culture. At CLEAR, the culture is about always going above and beyond. It’s about caring for our clients’ businesses, developing personal relationships, and work/life balance.

In addition to more than a dozen years in the PEO industry, Jim worked at a privately-owned real estate and insurance firm as Director of Human Resources and was district manager for a large retail chain covering 20 locations and hundreds of employees. Among his accomplishments there—rescuing a store about to close and turning it into a $2 million enterprise.


Cindy Edwards


A certified public accountant (CPA) with extensive experience in taxes, budgeting, forecasting and reporting, Cindy is well versed in the needs of small businesses. She began her career at a firm that specialized in accounting for entrepreneurs. It was there that she gained a keen appreciation for their needs, and the satisfaction that comes from helping them grow.

She considers accounting and finance a passion. “I am highly motivated and dedicated to upholding CLEAR’s reputation of always going above and beyond,” she explains.

Cindy is committed to filing taxes in a timely and accurate manner and has worked closely with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and local government entities to resolve issues. She’s known as a problem solver—one who is highly skilled at rapidly formulating plans and implementing change.

While small business is her focus, she is also adept at managing large, complex projects with multiple stakeholders, like the merger and data integration she led for a company with 150 departments. New internal controls including budgets and monthly performance reports significantly improved the company’s overall productivity and efficiency.

She counts among her greatest accomplishments turning around a well-known medical school’s failing payment system into an efficient one. Cindy led the accounting team that created a new structure, leading to on-time payments and open communications between vendors and the client, and improvements to the school’s reputation.

When she’s not busy helping clients and colleagues, you can find Cindy enjoying the outdoors & spending time with loved ones.