Charlie Cook, financial analyst, joined Columbia in December 2013. She grew up in West Michigan, but Ann Arbor became home during college at the University of Michigan. A few fun facts include that she is the youngest of three and the first in her family to go to university. Her first taste of finance and accounting was at an investment banking internship at Lehman Brothers. It was at Lehman she realized the lifestyle of a tax accountant was more her speed, so she worked in Chicago and then New York City for Ernst & Young. To avoid the commute to EY Detroit, when she moved ‘home’ to Ann Arbor, she worked for a regional firm where she met Brian via a mutual client. When asked about what she does in her spare time, she replied with, “What time? I have a toddler.” In all seriousness, she enjoys cooking, baking, and casually exercising. She loves spending time with her husband, Andy, and their son, Calum. She is also quite fond of her “first child” — her cat, Jules. She loves to travel, and usually tries to plan one big trip a year — this year, her family went to Portugal!
What’s your favorite part of working at Columbia Asset Management?
My favorite part of my work is constantly learning! Learning about and analyzing companies, understanding our clients and their families, learning about their different investment goals and strategies — you name it. I especially love feeling like I can be helpful and make a difference to people. Our office is very flat so I can be involved as much or as little as I want. I also like sitting by the door so I can keep an eye on everything! Kidding…kind of
Best advice you could give to a client?
Make better passwords! My advice is to make a schema of words or a phrase you can remember, rather than random numbers, letters, or symbols that you (anyone) will forget. Also, set reminders in your calendar to change all of your passwords.
Best advice you’ve been given?
Speak up. You have to ask for something that you want or need. I’ve found this to be helpful not just professionally, but personally too.
Do you have a hidden talent?
I used to do competitive cheer in high school so I can do a back handspring. I am also really good at identifying likenesses in people.
What is your favorite book?
That’s tough because I get through probably two books per month and it is hard to remember them all. A few standouts that I would recommend to anyone are Paris by Edward Rutherfurd, City of Thieves by David Benioff, Steps Out of Time by Katharine Soper or James Clavell’s Tai-Pan. I tend to take people up on their book recommendations, so if you have good ones, please send them my way!