CHILDS Advisory Partners. The Preferred Investment Bank for the Middle Market


The CHILDS Advisory Partners’ senior leadership team, supported by dynamic, knowledgeable associates and analysts, applies decades of experience delivering the investment banking services that help business services, healthcare and technology companies succeed.

Jim Childs, CEO
Alan Bugler, Managing Director, Business Services
Ross DeDeyn, Managing Director, Healthcare
Tom Donahue, Managing Director, Technology
Don Holbrook, Managing Director, Technology
Cooper Mills, Managing Director, Business Services
Dave Phillips, Managing Director, Business Services
Scott Rhodes, Managing Director, Technology
Jason Wallace, Managing Director, Business Services


Jim Childs

Jim Childs

Jim Childs founded CHILDS Advisory Partners (“CHILDS”) in 2006 to advise high growth companies in raising capital and executing mergers and acquisitions. Today, CHILDS Advisory Partners has offices across the U.S. and is one of the fastest growing boutique investment banks in the nation. This past November, CHILDS was named the 2016 Boutique Investment Banking Firm of the Year by The M&A Advisor.

Prior to founding CHILDS, Jim was CEO and Co-Founder of Impact Innovations, a $100 million IT services provider. Under Jim’s leadership, the company raised over $30 million in capital and grew to over 700 employees nationwide prior to its sale in 2004. Backed by Cravey, Green and Wahlen and Allied Capital, Impact became a premier IT services firm in the Southeast serving both federal and commercial clients.

In the mid-1990s, Jim served as Vice President of Investment Banking at Robinson Humphrey, a division of Salomon Smith Barney. Jim led over 30 M&A transactions and capital raises for private and public companies, focusing on middle-market business services and technology firms.

Jim started his career at Arthur Andersen in Atlanta. He graduated from Harvard Business School in 1995 and from the University of Georgia in 1990, where he was a member of the 1987 NCAA champion tennis team.

Alan Bugler

Alan Bugler
Managing Director, Business Services

Alan Bugler serves as a Managing Director at CHILDS Advisory Partners, focused on sourcing and executing mergers, acquisitions, and capital raises for Human Capital Management companies. He has completed 16 transactions in the sector in the last 24 months for businesses in the U.S., Canada, and Europe.  Most recently he advised Hire Dynamics in its recapitalization with MSouth, HIMS Consulting Group in its sale to HCTec, and Celerity in its Sale to AUSY.

Additionally, Alan and the transaction team were awarded Strategic Deal of the Year between $50-$250 million for the SOS/Elwood transaction by the M&A Advisor in 2013.

Prior to joining CHILDS in 2010, Alan was an investment banker in the Business and Technology Services Group and later in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group at SunTrust Robinson Humphrey, where he sourced and executed transactions representing in excess of $3 billion in value.

Previously, Alan was with the Christman Group, a Chicago based investment bank. Alan began his professional services career with Onboard Media, a global media company, where he led an international account program from inception to generating more than $12 million in annual sales in six countries.

Alan graduated salutatorian, summa cum laude with a B.A. in economics from Knox College in Galesburg, Ill, where he was a member of Phi Beta Kappa honor society. He also studied at university in Southampton, England, where he is originally from.

Ross DeDeyn

Ross DeDeyn
Managing Director, Healthcare

Ross DeDeyn is a Managing Director at CHILDS and leads the firm’s Healthcare Practice.  Over the last 15 years, Ross has executed numerous healthcare and technology transactions for public and private companies including mergers, acquisitions, leveraged buyouts, and securities offerings totaling over $4 billion in enterprise value.

Previously, Ross was a Vice President with Piper Jaffray’s Healthcare Team in New York focused exclusively in the healthcare services space.  Before Piper Jaffray, Ross began his career in investment banking as an Associate with the UBS Healthcare Team in New York where he worked on transactions across the full spectrum of healthcare, including healthcare services, medical technology, large and specialty pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology.

Former clients include companies such as InterMed, MWI Veterinary Supply, Nursefinders, Alliance Imaging, Matria Healthcare, and Almedica.

Ross holds an MBA from Columbia Business School, a JD from the University of Georgia School of Law, and a BS in Economics from Vanderbilt University.

Cooper Mills

Tom Donahue
Managing Director, Technology

Tom joined CHILDS in 2013 to advise growth-focused software, IT  services and consulting companies.  He has been advising clients on mergers and acquisitions and capital raising transactions for over 18 years and has successfully closed deals with more $4.0 billion in transaction value.  He has recently advised McKinnis Consulting, Solstice Mobile, Vistex and Peoplenet.  Tom is located in our Boston office.

Tom shares the entrepreneurial spirit and drive that his clients possess. Prior to CHILDS, Tom co-founded Bulger Capital Partners. While there, he helped to raise and invest a growth equity fund in addition to advising clients including Ansys, Rocket Software and TSD.

Previously, Tom was at Needham & Company for nine years, where he performed public and private equity offerings as well as M&A transactions for his clients. Tom also established the software and services group at Needham and was Co-Head of the East Coast team. He advised clients including Aspen Technology, Bottomline Technologies, Kronos and PTC on a wide range of transactions.

Tom started his career at First Call, a division of Thomson Financial Services. He received an M.B.A. from the F.W. Olin School of Business at Babson College and a B.A. from Hobart College.

Don Holbrook

Don Holbrook
Managing Director, Technology

Don Holbrook has more than 20 years of investment banking experience focused primarily on technology and IT services. As a Managing Director, he manages CHILDS Advisory Partners’ Los Angeles office, where he provides transaction advice and execution to high-growth IT and professional services companies. Don has successfully led more than 75 M&A transactions.

With extensive experience with high-growth IT and professional services mergers and acquisitions, Don has worked with companies such as Cumberland Consulting Group, Aggressor, Nexus, Sagacious, Datavail and Group Basis helping them be acquired, raise capital or grow through acquisitions.

Don holds a B.S. in Business from Roger Williams University and an MBA from the McColl School of Business at Queens University of Charlotte, North Carolina.

Cooper Mills

Cooper Mills
Managing Director, Business Services

Cooper Mills joined CHILDS Advisory Partners in 2009 following successful tenures at several leading investment banks. He leverages his three decades of experience advising high-performing business and technology services companies to provide firm leadership, and he applies his extensive sector-focused-experience to help CHILDS’ clients meet their financial objectives.

Prior to joining CHILDS, Cooper founded SunTrust Robinson Humphrey's Business and Technology Services industry group in 1993. Under Cooper’s leadership, this group became one of the most active equity underwriters and M&A advisors in the human capital management industry. In addition, he and his team were active in the marketing and information services and industrial services industries and they were responsible for developing and transacting public and private-equity capital raises, private debt placements, and M&A transaction and financial advisory assignments for companies such as MPS Group, EmployBridge and AMN Healthcare.

Cooper's previous experience includes three years with Rotan Mosle in Houston, and 10 years with Trust Company Bank as a manager of national accounts in Atlanta and as the manager of the European representative office in London.

Cooper serves as a Foundation Trustee of Atlanta Youth Academy and Center for the Visually Impaired in Atlanta. He also served as Advisory Director of the College of Business at Georgia Institute of Technology. Cooper received his M.B.A. from the Darden Graduate School of Business at the University of Virginia and B.S. in Industrial Management from the Georgia Institute of Technology.

Dave Phillips

Dave Phillips
Managing Director, Business Services

Dave Phillips joined CHILDS Advisory Partners following successful tenures at several global human capital firms. As a Managing Director, he manages CHILDS Advisory Partners Jacksonville, FL office, focusing on firms in the business services sector.

Over the last 16 years Dave has executed over 50 transactions in the human capital sector focused on sell and buy side strategic financial advisory services for owners, senior management teams and strategics. Dave is an active member of the American Staffing Association, Staffing Industry Analysts and Tech Serve Alliance and is a frequent guest speaker on mergers and acquisitions.

Prior to joining CHILDS, Dave served as the Vice President of Corporate Development for Volt Information Sciences. Prior to that, Dave spent 10 years as Vice President of Corporate Development for MPS Group, and executed over 40 transactions across the IT, healthcare, legal, finance & accounting, marketing and VMS/RPO/MSP sectors. He leverages his three decades of experience acquiring, integrating and managing high-performing business services and technology companies to provide guidance to services firms. As one of the most active buyers in the human capital sector, he brings a unique perspective to our clients.

Dave’s previous experience includes over 15 years in general and sales management with technology firms servicing the banking, professional services and construction industries.

Scott Rhodes

Scott Rhodes
Managing Director, Technology

Scott Rhodes joined CHILDS Advisory Partners in 2016 to advise software and technology companies. Scott brings unique 360 degree perspective to M&A transactions with his experience as a strategic buyer with two active acquirers in Fortune 500, private company owner / operator who sold twice to industry leaders, and an investment banker. During his 25 year career, he has executed over 80 M&A and capital raising transactions.

Prior to CHILDS, Scott spent four years with Equifax Inc. leading M&A transactions to support its growth strategy in human capital management, data and advanced analytics, and key industry verticals.

He was CEO of Bagster, an innovative consumer product and services company. Under his leadership, Bagster raised $17 million of private equity in 2007 and was sold to Waste Management in 2009. After the sale, Scott continuing managing Bagster, while also serving as Managing Director in the corporate development group leading acquisition and integration projects until 2011.

Beginning in 2004, he was Managing Partner of one of the largest PODS franchise groups with operations in seven states and later sold business to PODS Enterprise Inc. (owned by Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan).

Scott spent 12 years in investment banking with SunTrust Robinson Humphrey and Bank of America.

He earned MBA with distinction and Beta Gamma Sigma from Kellogg School at Northwestern University in 1994 and a BA in economics with distinction and Phi Beta Kappa from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1989.

Scott serves on Board of Directors of ACG Atlanta (Association for Corporate Growth). Scott is Chairman of the Board of Sensations Therafun, a 501c3 providing therapeutic and sensory recreation for special needs children.

Jason Wallace

Jason Wallace
Managing Director, Business Services

Jason Wallace joined CHILDS Advisory Partners in 2014 to advise growth-oriented business and industrial services companies. Jason has nearly two decades of experience advising Boards of Directors and senior management teams on their most critical business and strategic issues. He has executed M&A and financing transactions totaling more than $40 billion in enterprise value.

Prior to joining CHILDS, Jason was a Managing Director for Blackstone Advisory Partners, the M&A advisory arm of Blackstone. At Blackstone, Jason was a founding member of the Atlanta office in 2004 and led Blackstone’s efforts in business and industrial services and packaging.

Jason began his career in the Investment Banking division of Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette (and later Credit Suisse through merger). He was part of the southeast coverage team in Atlanta and executed multiple transactions in a wide variety of industries. His primary product focus was M&A, leveraged finance and equity underwriting.

Jason graduated from Harvard Business School in 2002 and from Georgia Tech in 1997. He lives in Atlanta with his wife, Suzanne, and his two children, Will and Ella.


People Intensive

“We are fortunate to have a strong team of smart, driven professionals who won’t settle for less than the best. It’s that drive that high-growth clients and private equity firms count on for results over the long-term.”

—Jim Childs, Founder
CHILDS Advisory Partners