Alumni Board

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova. Name: David Andrews Scholar Year: 2014 Hometown: Louisville College(s), Degree(s): Colorado College, English - Focus in Creative Writing (Poetry), Class of 2018 What are you currently interested in pursuing after graduating? After graduation I will drive out to northern Massachusetts to work as a summer session teaching intern at the Northfield Mount Hermon School. I will be teaching the “Writing in the Outdoors” course alongside a master teacher during the six-week program. I am also waiting to hear back from the Fulbright English Teaching Assistant Program. This fall, I also applied to teach English in Uruguay during the 2018-19 school year. Before I leave for Massachusetts and become an adult, I hope to make use of the touring bike I bought this summer and go for a multi-week tour in the western United States. Tell us about what activities, groups and/or organizations you have joined in college and why you joined them. I joined the student radio station, the Sounds of Colorado College, during my first year at CC mostly so I could spend more time with a friend who also had a show on the station. Surprisingly, I’ve stuck with my radio show since 2014 and still spend an hour every Monday streaming music to around 17,000 listeners across the Front Range. Just kidding. At most, I have five listeners every week, but it’s still a good time. In addition to DJing, I am a writing center tutor, I lead backpacking trips with the Outdoor Education Community, and I was the editor-in-chief of the student newspaper for two semesters. Tell us about an important mentor you have had. The boss of the ice cream shop where I worked in high school is probably the most important non-parental mentor I’ve had in my life. He always gets good haircuts, which is something I aspire to. In addition, he is a literal force of nature and wakes up every day with the desire to achieve his dreams. He recently told me that I should challenge myself and take risks in the next couple of years while I’m fresh out of college. This time in my life, he said, is one of the rare moments where my decisions will only truly affect one person: me. What's the best advice you've ever received? The Four Agreements were introduced to me by an Uber driver in Los Angeles in 2015. He had little water bottles and fun-size Snickers in his Honda Odyssey, but was also packing some indispensable life advice. The Four Agreements are as follows. 1. Be impeccable with your word. 2. Don’t take anything personally 3. Don’t make assumptions 4. Always do your best. I encourage everyone to read The Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz to learn more. The agreements are based on the idea that humans live a “dream” conjured by their perception of the world, but it is possible to control this dream and attain happiness and peace. If you could have dinner with one or more people from history, whom would you choose and why?  James Baldwin would be a great dinner guest. My dad recommended I watch “I Am Not Your Negro” last year, and I was very interested in Baldwin. I doubt he’d have much interest in having dinner with me, but I think our dinner would have the potential to be an enjoyable two- to three-hour experience. I would ask him some questions about his time living in France, his opinion on hip-hop’s place in American culture, and learn more about his writing process and favorite poets....

By the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board Would you like to become more involved with the Boettcher Scholar alumni community in your area?  The scholar alumni board is seeking alumni to host Health and Wellness Challenge events around the country during the month of April. As you may be aware, recent survey data indicated that Boettcher Scholars report higher levels of stress than the general population. Since lower stress starts with personal wellness and strong social connections, want you to help put your fellow scholars on the path to better health. What is the Health and Wellness Challenge? The Boettcher Scholar Alumni Boards’ Health and Wellness Challenge is an opportunity for alumni around the country to join together to promote personal well-being for the Boettcher alumni community!  During the month of April, Boettcher alumni will be invited to compete to see which class decade (i.e. 2010’s, 2000’s, 1990’s, 1980’s, 1970’s, 1960’s and prior) can make the biggest impact in improving their personal health and wellness.  Impact will be measured by hours spent on health and wellness activities, and the winning decade will be announced at the Signature Event in June. Alumni can participate in two ways, both of which will accumulate hours towards determining which class decade can claim the title of “Health and Wellness Challenge Champions”: Participate with fellow alumni in their areas in a Health and Wellness Event.  This is the group event which you will be organizing and leading.  You can choose the type of event you’d like to host, and the possibilities are endless!  Some examples include organizing a hike/bike ride/run, a yoga class, a healthy cooking class, a day of skiing, etc. Set an individual personal wellness goal and tracking the number of hours spent towards your goal If you are interested in hosting an event, please contact krystal@boettcherfoundation.org.  ...

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova. Name: Todd Breyfogle Scholar Year:  1984 Hometown: Lafayette College(s) and degree(s): Colorado College, B.A., Classics-History-Politics; Corpus Christi College, Oxford, B.A., M.A., Ancient and Modern History; Corpus Christi College, Oxford, M.St., Patristic and Modern Theology; University of Chicago, M.A., Ph.D., Social Thought Tell us about your current work and how long you’ve been doing it. What is your favorite aspect of your current occupation? As director of seminars for the Aspen Institute, I help successful people live more philosophically. I organize humanities-based leadership seminars in which a deep exposure to classic and contemporary texts from around the world help senior leaders become more self-aware and more self-correcting. It is rewarding to see how the liberal arts become immediately relevant to how people think about living and leading in a complex world. Ideas in action—what could be better? What role has being a Boettcher Scholar played into where you are and what you are doing now? The Boettcher Scholarship allowed me to attend Colorado College—something my family could never have afforded. And because of the scholarship, I had the freedom to pursue what I loved—interdisciplinary humanities. That freedom to pursue learning for its own sake, without immediate regard for its utility, has carried me on an extraordinary path to study at Oxford, to a PhD from the University of Chicago, to working with undergraduates (including Boettcher Scholars) at the University of Denver, to extending that love of liberal learning among senior adults who are making significant decisions all over the world. Tell us about your involvement in activities, organizations or groups outside of work. My activities outside of work are largely related to liberal education. I sit on the Senate of the Phi Beta Kappa Society, the board of the Association of American Rhodes Scholars, the board of the Alliance for Liberal Learning, and chair the American Academy for Liberal Education. I still wear my academic hat, writing and lecturing, and my book On Creativity, Liberty, Love and the Beauty of the Law was published by Bloomsbury in 2017. Most important, I spend time with my wife, Allyson, and my children, Sarah and Lucus. I enjoy hiking, horseback riding, music and running. What’s the best advice you’ve received and what advice do you have for new graduates entering your career field? The best advice for any career, and for living: know yourself. Ask yourself: How do I match my talents with one of the world’s greatest needs? Your career rarely matches what you studied in college. Pursue what you care about regardless of its perceived value. Ideally, undergraduate education gives you the time, space and freedom to understand your strengths and weaknesses, and to learn how to manage yourself. I work with a lot of CEOs and senior professionals who insist that they want people with integrity and purpose who can speak and write clearly, and who know how to learn. If you could have dinner with one person or a few people from history, whom would you choose and why? I’d have dinner with an improbable pair: Michel de Montaigne and Teddy Roosevelt, both of whom loved horses. Both were men of unusually creative intellects who found ways of combining deep contemplation with energetic action. Both were wonderful storytellers, so our conversations would be lively and witty—and would provide much-needed perspective on life today. Beyond wit, both me deepened their sense of proportion and grace as they passed through significant existential pain. Montaigne and TR also immersed themselves in the natural world and understood how connection to an order outside of ourselves helped inculcate a capacity for self-transcendence....

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova. Name: Paula Pulido Scholar Year: 2016 Hometown: Lone Tree College(s), Degree(s): University of Colorado Boulder, civil engineering with minors in business and leadership, graduating in 2021 with my BS/MS What are you currently interested in pursuing after graduating? I am studying civil engineering because it is a degree that will allow me to improve the lives of people. Civil engineering is a central part of community development; economies and society cannot improve without basic and enabling infrastructure. I will improve the lives of people in developing countries by creating my own engineering company partnering with local and global organizations to help deliver infrastructure projects and enable economies to grow. After graduating I hope to complement my engineering degree with a master’s degree in business administration. Tell us about what activities, groups and/or organizations you have joined in college and why you joined them. My favorite activity in college is the computer science and engineering after school class that I teach to fifth graders. I teach at a low-income elementary school in Boulder, and many of the kids have never imagined themselves attending college one day. I love this job because I get to show my students what engineering is, why it is so exciting and why they should aspire to attend college one day. I love to see their faces when I take them to Google, and they all tell them they will study computer science one day so they can work there. They know that they are working towards college one day. Additionally, this class is typically the first exposure the girls have to coding and engineering—I love to empower them so one day they can choose to study engineering without any hesitation. Tell us about an important mentor you have had. Teachers make an immeasurable difference in the lives of their students. Mrs. Lay, my seventh-grade algebra teacher, was the toughest, strictest teacher I had ever had. And her algebra class was the first time I truly felt challenged at school. It often brought me to tears. I loved it. I felt that Mrs. Lay saw something special in me, but was never easy on me and always made me prove myself. She taught me to work hard. I was remembering that class last semester while taking Calculus 3. (Which is the second hardest math class I have ever taken – a close second to my seventh-grade algebra class!) What's the best advice you've ever received? Work hard and always be honest. I learned this from my parents. They taught me to love and value education. I don’t know who I’d be without them! If you could have dinner with one or more people from history, whom would you choose and why?  Sir Richard Branson. He is the founder and CEO of the Virgin Group. I love his story about his early years—his rebellion in his youth and decision to change his path and become an entrepreneur. His imagination is wild—his mind has no limits, his company ranges from spaceflight to music records!...

By Lori Prok 1992 Scholar Alumni Board Chair Greetings Boettcher Scholar community! On behalf of my fellow board members, happy 2018! We are looking forward to a productive and exciting year for our scholar alumni community. First, some acknowledgments and introductions: I would like to extend a huge thank you to Peter Maiurro, our outgoing alumni board chair. His commitment and contributions to the board and alumni community have been very valuable and are much appreciated. He has spent many hours commuting from Colorado Springs in order to lead our team, and we are all very grateful for his leadership and innovative ideas. I also offer my sincere gratitude to our outgoing board member, Rick Zier, who has given his time, creativity, and positive energy to continue to improve our alumni outreach efforts. Please join me in a heartfelt welcome to our new board members: Brian Peagler and Ruthie Lestikow. We are excited to work with you! Next, some thoughts on the priorities of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board this year, and events to highlight on your calendar: Our board VISION: A connected, engaged and empowered family of Boettcher Scholars whose collective impact of service, leadership, character and achievement is exponentially greater than the sum of individual scholars acting alone. Our board MISSION: In partnership with and in support of the aims of the Boettcher Foundation, we cultivate, inspire, and collaborate with the community of graduated and current Boettcher Scholars to further professional and personal growth, promote ongoing learning and pursuit of life passions, and enable positive civic impact. This year, we are focusing our efforts in several specific areas: Our collective potential as an alumni group - in our local, national and even international communities - is immeasurable. Our biggest ongoing goal as a board is to facilitate using that potential for more impactful and meaningful relationships with the communities where we, as Boettcher Scholars, work and interact, and where our civic impact can be greatest. You will likely be contacted by your scholar year “Class Champion,” a fellow scholar who will be your class contact point. He/she will be furthering our alumni outreach efforts, with information about upcoming events and ways to become more involved in the alumni community. If you are interested in being the Class Champion for your scholar year, please contact me! We are also making mentorship a priority this year, with hopes to streamline ways for Boettcher Scholars to connect with each other for professional and personal mentorship and other opportunities. Stay tuned… Our Alumni Ambassador program continues to expand, connecting alumni with middle and high school students in underrepresented schools and communities, and raising awareness about the scholarship program. We will be offering educational and service opportunities throughout the year – more information is always available in our email newsletter or on the Boettcher foundation website. On that note, we are very excited about this year’s inaugural Boettcher Scholar Signature Event, which will be held at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science June 22-24, 2018. This will be an opportunity to connect with other Boettcher Scholar alumni, hear some amazing TED-style talks from fellow alumni, engage in service opportunities, explore Denver and the surrounding areas, and have fun with your family and friends. Watch you email for a registration link. In addition, secured a discount hotel block at The Maven Hotel for $169/night. Book a room by calling 844.432.9374. And finally a request: I would love to hear from you! Our alumni community is such an interesting, diverse, thoughtful group of people. In the spirit of achieving our biggest goal – leveraging the alumni community to make a real and meaningful impact on the community – I would so value your ideas about ways to expand our communication, programming, event offering, and involvement in our local Colorado communities. I’d also be interested in your personal or professional endeavors and accomplishments, service efforts, or life events you would like to share with the Boettcher community. You can reach me at lori.prok@ucdenver.edu. Thank you and here’s to a great year!...

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova. Name: Beth Skelton Scholar Year:  1984 Hometown: Littleton (currently in Crawford) College(s), Degree(s) and Graduation Year(s): German Language and Literature (BA, 1989) with secondary teaching licensure; Curriculum and Instruction in Multicultural Teacher Education (MA, 1994) Tell us about your current work and how long you’ve been doing it. What is your favorite aspect of your current occupation? I am an independent educational consultant. I support schools and educators across the United States and internationally in their quest to provide equitable education for English Language Learners. I love the challenges and variety in my work and the ability to impact students’ education. I have the opportunity to work directly with students, coach teachers, support principals, and facilitate workshops. Since I began consulting in 2002, I have worked with schools in 19 different states, in 12 different countries and on five different continents. What role has being a Boettcher Scholar played into where you are and what you are doing now? During my junior year at Colorado College, I won a scholarship from the college to study abroad in Germany for a year. I was able to put my Boettcher Scholarship on hold for that year, which meant I had an additional year of funded undergraduate study. During this fifth year at CC, I used the Boettcher Scholarship to earn my teaching certificate, which unexpectedly launched me into my career. I continue to be an involved Boettcher Scholar alumni serving as an Alumni Ambassador and on the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board. Tell us about your involvement in activities, organizations or groups outside of work. In addition to serving on the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board, I also serve on the board of the Colorado Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages. I regularly do yoga, hike, cross country and downhill ski, canoe, work in our organic garden and spend as much time outside as possible. I’m also an avid reader and have been part of a local book club for the past 19 years. This past year I took on a new challenge and started learning to play marimba with a local group. What’s the best advice you’ve received and what advice do you have for new graduates entering your career field? In my first week of college, a senior Boettcher Scholar advised me to “major in professors, not classes.” This older Boettcher Scholar pointed me toward the best professors in all academic fields, and I ended up taking courses from calculus to philosophy in the first year. “Majoring in professors” meant that I was interested in every class and learned a lot about the magic of teaching from these dynamic and engaging individuals. I would advise current graduates entering education to share their passion freely with their students. Ignite them with your love of your content and set them on the path to lifelong learning. If you could have dinner with one person or a few people from history, whom would you choose and why? If I could share a meal with anyone from the past, I would choose my mother. Although isn’t mentioned in a history book, she made a huge impact on my life and the lives of the nearly 1,000 kindergarten and first-grade students she taught to read during her career. She left this earth before I turned 30, and I would love the chance to talk to her again. I would ask her the personal questions that were never posed while she was alive and discuss educational issues with her again. Most of all, I would love to introduce her to my daughter, her namesake....

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova. Name: Noah Hirshorn Scholar Year: 2016 Hometown: Highlands Ranch College(s), Degree(s): Colorado College; environmental science (chemistry) 2020 What are you currently interested in pursuing after graduating? I am interested in pursuing a master’s degree in environmental engineering so that I can work on the development of clean and renewable energy. After graduate school, I would like to begin work in the aviation industry to make traveling on airlines better for the environment. In my free time, I would like to finish climbing all of the 14,000-foot peaks in Colorado and learn how to whitewater river kayak on the Animas River. Tell us about what activities, groups and/or organizations you have joined in college and why you joined them. I am currently on the Boettcher Scholar Student Committee, which has been a great opportunity because it allows me to help improve the experience of all scholars while learning more about the foundation. I am also a member of the NCAA Division III Men's Lacrosse team at CC. Lacrosse has been a part of my life since I was 10 years old, and I'm glad I can continue playing in college because I believe being a student athlete helps me build character, leadership skills and time management skills. In addition, I am part of the Early Scholars Tutoring Club and visit Bristol Elementary School once a week to tutor students. Tell us about an important mentor you have had. Dr. Jake Herman was a great mentor to me in high school. As my lacrosse coach, he pushed me to work as hard as possible to become a better player. Yet, it was the relationship we had outside of lacrosse that I cherish the most. Dr. Herman supported me in all endeavors that I pursued in high school. His passion for lacrosse and science along with his ability to be a great leader all played a role in developing me into the person I am today. What's the best advice you've ever received? When I was a freshman in high school, my grandpa gave me a piece of advice that I have held onto ever since. He said that when it comes to making decisions, I should decide what is best considering the information that I already know without making assumptions. While it seems like a simple piece of advice, I have found that it has always worked. Decisions can be hard, but by only looking at what is certain, I have found that making decisions has become an easier process for me. If you could have dinner with one or more people from history, whom would you choose and why?  I would have dinner with Dave Grohl. Dave Grohl was the drummer of Nirvana and the lead singer/guitarist for the Foo Fighters, which are two of my favorite bands. Music has always been a huge part of my life and hearing about Dave’s experience in two of the most successful bands of all time would be amazing. Furthermore, I want to ask about how he believes grunge music has changed popular culture. Dave, if you are reading this, feel free to invite me to dinner next time you are in Colorado....

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova. Name: Ashesh Thaker Scholar Year:  2000 Hometown: Greeley College(s), Degree(s) and Graduation Year(s): University of Colorado Boulder – BA, 2004; University of California, Los Angeles – MD, 2009 Tell us about your current work and how long you’ve been doing it. What is your favorite aspect of your current occupation? I joined the faculty at the University of Colorado School of Medicine in August 2016, after completing my postgraduate medical training, most recently a fellowship at the University of California, San Francisco. I am a neuroradiologist and have a clinical practice at the University of Colorado Hospital, where I also train residents and fellows. I particularly enjoy teaching and research, with a specific interest in understanding changes that occur in the brain during disorders of cognition, such as in Alzheimer’s Disease. It’s a real privilege to teach and work at my alma mater! What role has being a Boettcher Scholar played into where you are and what you are doing now? The Boettcher Scholarship helped me achieve my goals in ways more than just financial. The Boettcher community instills a sense of service; this ultimately pushed me towards academic medicine rather than private practice. Most importantly, I had the opportunity to return to Colorado after 12 years on the east and west coasts. I look forward to being more involved with the foundation and its many service activities now that I’m back home. Tell us about your involvement in activities, organizations or groups outside of work. My wife and I just had our first child, a baby boy, so he has been keeping us pretty busy outside of work! Having just moved back to Denver from California, we are hoping to get more involved in local groups and organizations. We are members at the Denver Art Museum, involved in the Hindu Temple and Cultural Center of the Rockies, and joined our local neighborhood civic association in Hilltop. . What’s the best advice you’ve received and what advice do you have for new graduates entering your career field? When I was a third-year medical student at UCLA on a surgical rotation, an intern (whose name I sadly can’t remember to give fair credit) gave me the great advice to “always function like I’m one level above my current position;” that is, act like an intern when a medical student, a resident when an intern, and a fellow when a resident. This is sound advice in a hierarchical field like medicine, but I think the message applies more broadly to any career. If you could have dinner with one person or a few people from history, whom would you choose and why? Though not really a “historical” figure, I would love to have dinner with Larry David, co-creator of Seinfeld (my favorite sitcom) and star of the current series Curb Your Enthusiasm. His style of comedy has always resonated with me, and I find his work refreshing. He reminds me to take life a little less seriously and a dinner date with him would be entertaining to say the least!...

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Gergana Kostadinova. Name: Serene Singh Scholar Year: 2015 Hometown: Colorado Springs College(s), Degree(s): University of Colorado; political science (BA) and journalism (BA) and leadership studies (minor) What are you currently interested in pursuing after graduating? I am interested in pursuing a law degree with a focus on constitutional and human rights law. Since I am interested in becoming a Supreme Court justice, I am excited to hopefully work for the American Civil Liberties Union where I will specialize in defending free speech rights and at The Sikh Coalition where I will help defend religious freedoms. Within all this, if I could squeeze in a chance to compete for Miss America, an opportunity to act in a Bollywood film and a way to release the first Indian-American female rapper mixtape, that would be great. Tell us about what activities, groups and/or organizations you have joined in college and why you joined them. Some of the activities are The Serenity Project, the Appellate Court, the Colorado Bhangra Team, and 3P Speech and Debate. The Serenity Project is a fashion show with a yearlong “pageant reign” that helps women who are not our society’s traditional models become fashion models and ambassadors for inspiration throughout the community. The Appellate Court ensures legitimacy and defends student freedoms! The Colorado Bhangra Team is a Punjabi Indian dance team that spreads positivity. 3P Speech serves students across the country who are passionate and eager to be heard. My job is to help them speak effectively and to watch them change the world through their voices – a pretty awesome first job. Tell us about an important mentor you have had. Mr. Brian Hoff. For me, he was not just a high school speech/debate coach, but an individual I highly respect. Despite having attended Rampart – a school without a forensics team – Mr. Hoff took me under his wing at The Classical Academy. Mr. Hoff challenges me to push myself and to take on adversity with a smile. His relentless belief in my abilities inspired me to one day enter public service – and more importantly, believe that I could do it. Whether it be pageants, relationships or life itself – Mr. Hoff has been there to encourage me to never give up and to use my voice to serve others. What's the best advice you've ever received? The best advice I have ever received was from my mother who said, "If you want something you don't have, you have to do something you've never done." This has been a guiding philosophy in my life because I am constantly working to become a better version of myself. I often put myself in odd and uncomfortable situations in life (like when I first joined a pageant as a tomboy or when I interned at a strict Republican’s office as a social liberal) in order to remind myself that I never can stop growing and learning. If you could have dinner with one or more people from history, whom would you choose and why?  I would choose Mata Khivi Ji. Mata Khivi Ji has been an inspiration for me since I was a little girl. Mata Khivi Ji instituted free nutritious community kitchens called “Langars.” Langars are for all people – regardless of gender, race, etc. to sit alongside one another and break bread. Five hundred years ago, not only was this revolutionary, but it set up a foundation for “sewa” or selfless service to be the most central part to a Sikh’s life. Meeting Mata Khivi Ji would give me the chance to volunteer alongside an incredible figure, and learn as much as I can to be a stronger female leader in my community....

Members of the Boettcher Scholar Alumni Board are interviewing their fellow Boettcher Scholars to help the community get to know one another better. The following Q&A was compiled by Boettcher Scholar Angelique Diaz. Name: Karin Schantz Scholar Year:  1981 Hometown: Fort Collins College(s), Degree(s) and Graduation Year(s): CU and CC, B.A. 1986 Tell us about your current work and how long you’ve been doing it. What is your favorite aspect of your current occupation? I am on sabbatical, contemplating my next steps in life while following some passions through volunteer work, dividing my time between Lakewood, Colorado and Olympia, Washington. After graduation three decades ago, my career path has taken a few turns. I initially “delayed real life” (after canoeing the Mississippi River) and worked in Europe as a tour guide. Subsequently, I marketed Colorado as an international tourism destination, consulted on database design and management, was a financial advisor and estate planner, and most recently gutted and finished a home for resale.  I love designing, planning and working to reach a mutual goal. What role has being a Boettcher Scholar played into where you are and what you are doing now? I am eternally grateful that I didn’t have a decade of debt. I moved to Europe after graduation and explored different cultures. I improved my language skills which benefitted me in future jobs. I met lifelong friends, and my view of the world changed. I also thank the foundation for getting me through. I didn’t have a clear idea of what I wanted to be when I grew up and the scholarship carried me through graduation. In an attempt to “pay it forward”, I was active through grassroots efforts to launch a scholar alumni program which was later formalized by the foundation Tell us about your involvement in activities, organizations or groups outside of work. In recent years, I have served on the Jefferson County Horse Council board, raised a litter of Goldendoodles, was instrumental in creating a new zoning classification for my neighborhood, helped ensure Lakewood’s involvement as a sustainable neighborhood and headed up the R Cubed (recycling, repurposing, reusing) initiative; initiated and organized a community paint recycling day, which kept more than 8 tons of paint out of the landfills; raised money for the Lakewood High School Instrumental Music program; joined my boyfriend on a Habitat for Humanity Global Village trip in Paraguay; cared for aging parents and settled estates; gardened, hiked and snowshoed. What’s the best advice you’ve received and what advice do you have for new graduates entering your career field? The best advice I received right out of college was from one of my friend’s mothers and is universal advice, regardless of a chosen career field. She encouraged me to open an individual retirement account or IRA (which I also recommended to clients a few decades later). Growing up, my family did not discuss finances. I never really received any kind of financial education from them probably because they hadn’t received any from their parents. My father was retired Air Force and relied on his military pension for retirement. Pensions are rapidly becoming things of the past, and it is important to plan early. If you could have dinner with one person or a few people from history, whom would you choose and why? I would love to have dinner with my ancestors who initially immigrated to the United States. My mother has enthusiastically been researching our family ancestry and has traced back multiple generations. It’s amazing what information is archived and accessible, giving a snapshot of lives on a daily basis. I would love to hear about the decision-making process and get a sense for shared personality characteristics. Is this perhaps where I got my sense of adventure, love of education, commitment to family, setting of goals, etc.? What else could I discover about myself and my role in this world?...