Wednesday, January 11th, 2023
7:00 - 8:30 AM
326 Main Street
Trail Life Brewing
Thursday, January 26th, 2023
5:30 - 7:00 PM
436 Main Street
YOUNG PROFESSIONAL OF THE YEAR
Mark Ashman, CPA, P.C.
Jorge was born in Durango, Mexico and didn’t arrive in the United States until 2010, when he moved to Delta, Colorado as a senior in high school. He wasted no time getting to work and quickly immersed himself to learn the English language, which he mastered in no time at all. Hungry to continue his education, Jorge moved again-this time to Grand Junction, where he enrolled at Colorado Mesa University. The act of progressing from learning a new language from scratch to graduating college at an English-speaking university would be quite a feat in its own right, but Jorge had even more fire in him than that. He graduated from CMU in 2016 with not one, but two degrees - Public Accounting and Finance - and did so with honors.
There are several CPAs and finance industry professionals in our network, and those of you who have taken the CPA exam know that it is notorious for its difficulty. We won’t tell your clients, but it isn’t exactly a secret that many CPAs require multiple attempts to pass the licensure exam. Jorge, however, passed the CPA exam on his first attempt and with flying colors - and he did so in his second language.
Jorge now works for the office of Mark Ashman (CPA, P.C.) as a tax manager.
Although Jorge is someone who has wholeheartedly embraced his professional role, he is also someone who has demonstrated a strong belief in the value of service. Wanting to give back, Jorge joined the Western Colorado Latino Chamber of Commerce (WCLCC) as a volunteer director in 2016 and has served as the WCLCC President since 2017. He is also a Council Member for the Minority Business Office Advisory Council for the State of Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade.
President Theodore Roosevelt once remarked that “in the long run, the success or failure of our nation will be conditioned upon the way in which the average man, the average woman, does his or her duty, first in the ordinary, every-day affairs of life, and next in those great occasional moments which call for the heroic virtues.” Our YP of the year was selected in no small part because he so fully personifies this ethos.
Jorge is someone who has made the most of every opportunity given to him and made opportunity itself where there was none to be found. He has made no excuses and grabbed life by the horns to accomplish everything he has set his will upon. He represents the best of what our community has to offer and embodies what it means to be a young professional. Congratulations, Jorge Pantoja!
YOUNG PROFESSIONALS OF THE QUARTERS
Young Professional of the Quarter is an award that honors Mesa County young professionals within YPNMC who have done an exceptional job representing young professionals or has made great achievements while being a member. The Board of Directors is always seeking nominations for the next Young Professional of the Quarter!
Aden Cesmet, Founder and Owner of Air Freshener Marketing, was recognized as the second quarter YP of the Quarter for 2022.
Gabriela Garayar, Western Slope Development Manager with Food Bank of the Rockies, was recognized as the first quarter YP of the Quarter for 2022.
Renaya Demarest, Account Director at GROWL Agency, was recognized as the Young Professional of the Quarter for October 2021.
Darah Galvin, Development Coordinator at Bray Commercial Real Estate was the Young Professional of the Quarter in May 2021.
Derek Irick, Realtor with Bray Real Estate, was the Young Professional of the Quarter in October 2020.
Kayley Vogel, Assistant Coordinator of CMU Career Services, was the Young Professional of the Quarter in June 2020.
Trevor Daggers, Financial Advisor with Merrill Lynch, was the Young Professional of the Quarter in June 2019.
Colter Lovette, co-owner of 32Waves, was the Young Professional of the Quarter in April 2019.
Dr. William Berguin, DDS was the Young Professional of the Quarter in June 2018.
Michael Brooks, Tax Supervisor for Dalby, Wendland, & Co., was the Young Professional of the Quarter in October 2018.
Leslie Eslava, Program Coordinator at Riverside Educational Center, was the Young Professional of the Quarter in March 2018.
AMERIPRISE FINANCIAL SERVICES
"I have met all my closest friends through YPN. When I was new to the Grand Valley, this is where I found people who enjoy learning."
"YPN is a great networking opportunity. Plus, it looks good to current and future employers that want to see a history of community involvement and leadership."
"The candidate forum YPN put on was so helpful. I'm so glad I got to go to an unbiased presentation of the candidates."
THROUGHOUT THE YEARS
After Hours - YPN + GJ Lions Club
After Hours - Paint & Pour at Angelo's Pottery
Lunch Conversation - Mayor Anna Stout
Before Hours - Sugar & Ice
September After Hours - Warehouse 2565
Lunch Conversation - Spencer Ingram
Before Hours - Spoons
Lunch Conversation - Dr. Hill
Before Hours - Coffee Trader
After Hours - Palisade Brewing Company
Lunch Conversation - Anna Nichols
Before Hours - Mountain Air Roasters
After Hours - Highlands Distillery
Before Hours - Sweet Kiwi Bakery
Lunch Conversation - Dr. Corey Ciocchetti
Before Hours - Kiln
Before Hours - Kiln Coffee Bar
Lunch Conversation - Daily Sentinel
Lunch Conversation - Jenn Moore
Lunch Conversation - Jay Seaton
Before Hours - Roasted
2018 YPN Christmas Party
Before Hours - My Favorite Muffin
Lunch Conversation - Girl Scouts
Lunch Conversation - Kevin & April
Lunch Conversation - Pete Baier
Before Hours - Main Street Bagels
Lunch Conversation - John McConnell, Eureka Science Museum