Thanks for sharing your story with us Cathy. So, let’s start at the beginning and we can move on from there.
After several very different careers (ballet teacher, fitness instructor, pastry chef), my husband suggested that I go back to school to be an accountant. He thought it would be a good fit because I’m good with numbers and processes, and very detail-oriented. At that time, we had a young daughter with whom I wanted to be able to stay home as much as possible, and the accounting field was in high enough demand to be able to reasonably expect that I might be able to get a decent job working from home, at least some of the time.
I graduated from Regis University in May 2010. In July of 2011, I started working for an accounting firm in the Denver Tech Center. The CPA and founder of that firm was a great guy named Tom Monaghan, and he was a fantastic mentor for me. At his suggestion, I studied for, and took the CPA exams and became a licensed CPA in Colorado in August 2014.
In March 2016, Tom passed away. The loss of my friend and mentor, during tax season no less, was devastating both personally and professionally. However, he had, over the course of thirty or so years, built an amazing clientele, and with the very hard work of everyone else at the firm, and even some friends-of-friends who were willing to help out, and the understanding of our clients, we managed to get through that tax season. Tom’s widow and I spent the next few months negotiating and in August 2016 I bought the accounting firm.
I had been working with the clients for about five years already at that point, and am proud to say that a great number of them stayed with the firm after the transition, and many are still clients today. We have also added many, many new great clients.
In June 2017 we moved from the Tech Center to Littleton, and I have since added a new office administrator and a staff accountant to my team. In the next year or so, I envision bringing another CPA into the firm and continuing on from there.
Has it been a smooth road?
Like any other business, we’ve seen transitions over the past three-plus years. Some long-time clients chose to move on, but we have acquired other clients at the same time. The first employee I hired did not work out well at all, and that left me apprehensive of going through the process again. But I now have two employees who are fantastic, and I love working with them.
There are always challenges as an entrepreneur, but the rewards are amazing, and make the effort so worthwhile!