Jim Haslem is Founder/CEO of CS Advisors and is responsible for all client engagements. Jim has over 30 years of experience in negotiating transactions. He spent his early career with the Wall Street law firm Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy, where he represented clients in a broad range of complex transactions. Jim also was an equity partner and office administrator of Sheppard Mullin, an international law firm.
In 2008, Jim was recruited by a leading consulting firm to participate in a multi-year program to negotiate the closure of more than 600 retail stores for a large coffee company. Jim has since become a top negotiator for dozens of national restaurants and retailers, including Starbucks, Carl's Jr./Hardee's, Arby's, Panda Express and Albertsons. Jim is a nationally-recognized speaker and writer on the subject of lease economics. Jim was a featured a speaker at the 2017 Restaurant Finance & Development Conference on November 15 in Las Vegas.
In addition to working with restaurants and retailers, Jim has negotiated leases for financial services firms, technology companies, educational institutes and his prior law firm. He has also successfully resolved several commercial real estate loans and securitized (CMBS) loans for corporate clients.
Jim has served on several boards, including Westmont Foundation, Lobero Theatre Foundation and Rabobank Regional Advisory Council. Jim is currently developing an organization, The Frugal Project, devoted to educating individuals of all ages about personal finance. Contact Jim if your organization is interested in having him speak on an issue of personal finance.
Jim received a JD from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and a BA from Columbia University.
Gary Graves is Founder and Managing Partner of G2 Advisors and is a Consulting Partner with CS Advisors. Gary has had a distinguished career as a Board Member, CEO, business advisor and Fortune 500 executive within public corporations and private businesses across a variety of consumer businesses. He started his career with positions at Procter & Gamble, McKinsey & Company, PepsiCo, Yum Brands, Boston Market and InterPark, then served as CEO of La Petite Academy and American Laser Centers.
Gary is a member of the Board of Directors for Caribou Coffee, Einstein Noah Restaurant Group and Fusion Education Group. He previously served as the non-Executive Chairman of Caribou Coffee having negotiated the sale of the company in 2013 to Joh A. Benckiser.
In addition, Gary served on the Board of Directors for the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Illinois and is the former Vice Chairman of the Make-A-Wish Foundation of America.
Gary received a Masters of Business Administration from The University of Chicago Booth School of Business and a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering from the University of Michigan.
John E. Murphy
John Murphy is a Consulting Partner with CS Advisors. Over the course of a 25-year career in the financial services industry, John has successfully negotiated a variety of commercial and capital markets transactions involving borrowers, vendors, landlords and institutional counterparties. John spent his early career as a commercial lender with JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo. From that foundational experience, John developed the ability to parse complex transactions and to achieve practical solutions for both the lender and client.
During the Financial Crisis (2009-2011), John and a team of entrepreneurs successfully launched a specialized financial services firm. Montecito Financial focused on providing bridge loans to real estate developers and contractors whose conventional funding sources were severed by commercial lenders undergoing regulatory pressure to reduce their loan assets. While providing superior returns to investors, Montecito Financial facilitated the completion of numerous construction projects along the California Coast.
John is a proponent of individual competency in issues of personal finance. He also volunteers his experience and time to nonprofit organizations, including Montecito Union School and local outreach programs for those in need. John is an avid cyclist, having participated in numerous amateur and gran fondo races, and a fitness and wellness coach.
John received a BA from Loyola University of Chicago and MBA from Lake Forest Graduate School of Management.
Adam Cohen is a Consulting Partner with CS Advisors. Adam’s career has spanned various industries, including retail, healthcare, food service, and transportation & logistics in both the public and private sectors. Adam’s career began at Home Depot, where he was a Finance Associate in their Atlanta office, and continued to progress in scope and responsibility as he moved to HD Supply, Physician Oncology Services, Cotiviti, and Mosaic Investments.
Most recently, Adam was CFO of a multi-unit QSR franchise and an active board member of an LTL trucking company. There, Adam obtained extensive experience negotiating multi-faceted deals on both the buy-side and sell-side on behalf of the two companies. During his tenure, Adam successfully negotiated 5 platform and bolt-on acquisitions, 3 real estate purchases and 3 sales, 8 debt deals, numerous supplier agreements, and countless lease negotiations spanning 71 properties.
Outside of work, Adam volunteers at the Boys and Girls Club of Metro Atlanta, where he serves on the Fulton County Board.
Adam received a BBA from the University of Michigan and an MBA from Emory University’s Goizueta Business School.
Network of Professionals
CSA works with a network of highly skilled professionals, including lenders, investment bankers, brokers, insurance advisors and attorneys.