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Chinook Capital Advisors was fortunate to have two fantastic undergraduate interns for Summer 2022, Katie Braden and Jordan Kauffman. The Chinook internship program exposes undergraduate students to every component of the deal process from pitch to kickoff to close. Interns work closely with our full team which allows them to understand how we come together to best serve our clients.

Before Katie and Jordan returned to school for their junior year at the University of Washington, they shared their experiences and what they learned at Chinook.


What projects did you enjoy most during your internship?

Katie: I enjoyed projects where I learned more about the buyers involved in the M&A process. In the beginning of my internship, I was trained on the various types of buyers Chinook works with. This sparked my interest in learning about what types of buyers are a fit for each type of client and what factors make businesses attractive acquisition targets. Projects I got to work on in this area included researching prospective buyers, sitting in on buyer meetings, and creating a lunch-and-learn presentation for the Chinook team about the private equity buy-and-build strategy.

Jordan: During my internship, I developed a passion for building engaging and eye-catching presentation materials for our clients. I was fortunate to join Chinook at a time when they had a plethora of deals in various stages which gave me the opportunity to dive into the M&A process and gain an understanding of what it looks like from start to finish. I was also given the opportunity to work on projects related to workflow optimization which I found very interesting as it allowed me to test new platforms and relay my findings back to the team.


What surprised you most about Chinook’s team culture?

Katie: I was surprised by the fun and relaxed atmosphere in the office. While the team works really hard, they casually chat and crack jokes throughout the day. Given the nature of Chinook’s small team, this allowed me to get to know the whole team well! I also had a blast at some of the company events throughout the summer including a boat day and a golfing day where I learned how to golf for the first time!

Jordan: One thing that really surprised me about Chinook’s team culture was the work-life balance of each team member. As we all know, traditional hours in investment banking can be far from ideal and lead to perverse outcomes such as unproductive tendencies or burnout. However, I didn’t find that to be the case at Chinook. I also valued how the co-founders, John & Ed, recognize the importance of team events as an opportunity to build relationships and enjoy the Seattle sunshine.


What advice would you give to future Chinook interns?

Katie: I would recommend being curious and inquisitive throughout the internship. If there is a particular topic you don’t understand or want to learn more about, the Chinook team does a great job of answering your questions and will attempt to delegate projects that align with your interests when possible.

Jordan: Since the team is small, I recommend that you try to get to know everyone outside of just their work-life. You might just find yourself going to a concert or playing pickleball one Friday after work with them!


What was your most unique accomplishment this Summer?

Katie: To the surprise of everyone, I taught Ed’s dog, Bailey, how to shake!

Jordan: I made peanut butter & BBQ chip sandwiches for the team (they had mixed reviews).


What’s next for you in your career?

Katie: I will be finishing up my last two years at the University of Washington as a major in finance and minor in informatics. Next summer, I will be a Summer Associate at Boston Consulting Group.

Jordan: I will be wrapping up my last two years at the University of Washington as a finance and informatics major. This upcoming winter quarter, I will be studying abroad in Barcelona. Next Summer, I will be a Summer Analyst at General Atlantic in their New York office.


For more information on Chinook Capital Advisors and our undergraduate internship program, click here.