Pat Atwood, Senior Associate
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2020, Pat worked at Madison Dearborn Partners, where he evaluated and executed leveraged buyout and structured equity investment opportunities. Before MDP, Pat worked in the Investment Banking division of William Blair & Company, where he provided support on financing and advisory transactions with the Healthcare and Consumer teams. Pat received his M.B.A. from the Stanford Graduate School of Business, his B.S. in Applied Mathematics from Northwestern University, and his Certificate in Financial Economics from the Kellogg School of Management.
Alan Bakhos, Vice President and Senior Counsel
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2018, Alan was Vice President and Assistant General Counsel at Newmark Knight Frank and, prior to that, an associate at Latham & Watkins, where his practice focused on mergers and acquisitions across a range of industries. Alan received his J.D. from the Northwestern University Pritzker School of Law and his B.A. in Economics and Political Science from Northwestern University.
Emily Casey Brown, Vice President
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2016, Emily was an investment banking analyst in the Global Industrials Group at Goldman Sachs in Chicago. While there, Emily provided support on a variety of financing and advisory transactions for sponsor and corporate clients. Emily received her B.B.A. in Finance with Highest Distinction from the University of Iowa and is currently pursuing her M.B.A at the Stanford Graduate School of Business.
Jeff Ehlers, Vice President and Operating Partner
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2017, Jeff spent 30 years as CFO or CEO in a wide range of industries including water technology, real estate development, gypsum wallboard manufacturing, heavy equipment manufacturing, business jet manufacturing, supply distribution, and capital equipment finance. He also has consulting, board member and chairman experience in pharmaceuticals, wood products, oil and gas development, gaming and casinos. Jeff began working for companies owned by interests of the Pritzker family in 1990. Jeff received his B.S. in Accountancy from Northern Arizona University in 1983, and began his career with Ernst and Whinney.
Sonny Garg, Phunhousian in Chief
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2020, Sonny spent 25 years as a senior executive or board member across many organizations in the private, public and nonprofit sectors. Most recently, he launched and was responsible for the Energy division at Uptake Technologies and prior to that was a member of the Executive Committee and the Chief Information & Innovation Officer at Exelon Corporation. Sonny also served in the administrations of Mayor Richard M. Daley and President William J. Clinton. Sonny currently serves on the boards of The Invisible Institute, the Institute for Nonviolence Chicago and the Chicago Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights and is an Executive in Residence at the Booth School’s Rustandy Center. Sonny has a B.A. and M.B.A. from the University of Chicago and an M.P.P. from Harvard University. He and his wife are reluctantly adjusting to empty nesting.
Scott Hairston, General Counsel and Managing Director
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2019, Scott spent 16 years at Latham & Watkins, including 8 years as a partner in the Mergers & Acquisitions practice group. In that capacity, Scott worked extensively with Michael Pucker and the Pritzker Family Business Interests and helped establish DNS Capital. Scott received his J.D. in 2001 from The University of Michigan Law School and his B.A. in English in 1998 from Duke University.
Lauren Hirsch, Executive Personal Assistant
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2017, Lauren worked with Michael and his wife, Gigi Pritzker, managing both business and personal interests for their family. She continues in that role in addition to her work with DNS Capital. Lauren received her B.S.B.A in Marketing from Elon University.
Jen Mendoza, Office Manager and Executive Assistant
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2017, Jen was Executive Assistant to the CEO of DRW Trading in Chicago. Over the past 10 years, Jen has provided high level executive support for financial and non-profit organizations including BDT & Company and The Chicago Council on Global Affairs. Jen studied at the University of Illinois at Chicago, majoring in Latin American Studies and Political Science.
Michael A. Pucker, Chairman & CEO
Michael founded DNS Capital with his wife, Gigi Pritzker, to represent the business interests of their immediate family. DNS Capital’s long-term, flexible approach to investing, in partnership with great business owners, management teams, and entrepreneurs, is informed by the Pritzker Family business history, Michael’s 20+ years representing Pritzker Family business interests, as well as his other professional experience (last 19 years at Latham & Watkins). Michael graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in History in 1983 and a JD in 1988.
As a partner at Latham & Watkins, Michael’s practice focuses on general corporate counseling, mergers and acquisitions, private equity, venture capital, capital markets, company representation, counseling boards and senior management in a variety of industries, and counseling families and related closely held enterprises in avoiding, mitigating and resolving disputes. Michael currently serves as a member of the Board of Directors of Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital, the Advisory Board of After School Matters, the Board of Advisors of American Jewish World Service, the Board of Trustees of Bernard Zell Anshe Emet Day School, and the Board of Trustees of Facing History and Ourselves.
Jason Schroeder, Principal
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2015, Jason was a member of Goldman Sachs’ Principal Investment Area in New York. His experience there included sourcing, analyzing and executing private equity and debt investments, with prior experience in the Technology, Media and Telecom investment banking group. Jason Graduated with Distinction from the University of Wisconsin – Madison with a B.B.A. in Finance, Investment and Banking.
Joel Sircus, Senior Associate
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2017, Joel was a Senior Associate Consultant at Bain and Company in their New York and Stockholm offices. While there, Joel advised senior executives across a variety of industries, helping develop turnaround and growth strategies for Fortune 500 companies. Joel received his B.A., cum laude, in Political Science from Yale University.
Brian Stal, Vice President
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2019, Brian was a member of The Pritzker Organization in Chicago. While there, Brian was responsible for sourcing, executing and leading investments across a wide range of industries including healthcare and insurance. His previous experience includes working as a strategy consultant for Monitor Group (now Monitor Deloitte) and managing a portfolio of options and equities for Peak6 Investments. Brian has served on the board of directors of GreyCastle Holdings and as a shareholder representative for Vi Senior Living. Brian received his M.B.A. with honors from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and his B.S. with honors and distinction from the University of Wisconsin – Madison.
CHARLES TOLLINCHE, Managing Director
Prior to joining DNS Capital in 2017, Charles spent 10 years in the private equity practice of MSD Capital, most recently as a Managing Director. While there, Charles was responsible for leading investments across a broad range of industries, including healthcare, financial services, business services and energy. His previous experience includes working for Warburg Pincus and Thoma Cressey Equity Partners. Charles received his M.B.A. from Harvard Business School and his B.A. in Economics from Harvard College.