Milestones

My road in life has been direct.
My dad died an alcoholic when I was 10. I was raised by a single mom who made less than $28K when I was in college, yet found a way to make sure me and my brother never went without.
When I was 16 I had some major health issues spring forth that I still deal with today. At the time I was angry because I was too young to experience those, but I never lost my vision of life success.
At 14 1/2 I got my first real job at Wendy's. Fired a week later for not showing up two days in a row, I was devastated because I had let others down. Since then I vowed to never quit or get fired.
With three months until HS graduation, I wasn't sure I was going to attend college. But I heard a rap album that changed my life. I decided the moment I heard it to enroll and chase my own dreams.
After community college, I transferred to the Univ of Colorado in Boulder. My first exam in FNCE 3010 I got a C. I had never seen a C in my life and I was devastated. I thought for sure I was dumb.
After an average annual review, a mentor of mine told me, "Diego, hear me now, people are going to see your value, just be patient." For the next five years I was at the top of the class each year.
I've served on several non-profit Boards serving education needs in the Denver community, overseeing over $1.5 million of scholarships and student assistance over the last seven years.
In 2016 I was asked to serve on the Board of the AICPA Board of Examiners, the Board that oversees the CPA Exam. The CPA is a prestigious professional certification and what an honor to have served!
Keep following my journey

Career

Assurance Senior Manager

I work with clients to ensure that financial information presented to stakeholders is fair and accurate.

Career Roadmap

Roadmap
My work combines:
My work combines:
Business
Numbers
Learning / Being Challenged

Day to Day

A typical day includes meetings with the team, meetings with the client, a lot of reading and a lot of thinking. At the senior manager level, I have to not only think about the audit of the financial statements, but also about the profitability of audits, the team, the short and long-term strategy for the team, recruiting new hires to become the next generation of audit professionals, and pursuing new business opportunities where they may arise. The best part: each day is unique.

Advice for Getting Started

Here's the first step for everyone

Don't be shy and network with those in the field. Then ASK to shadow them. ASK them to be your career mentor. ASK them to explain all of the unwritten rules and paths to success in that career. People LOVE when you ask them about themselves, especially their careers. As humans we tend to shy away from asking but the reality is that in order to get the full sense of what you're stepping into, you have to put those questions out there and get as much information as possible.

Recommended Education

My career is related to what I studied. I'd recommend the path I took:

undergrad
Bachelor
Accounting
graduate
Graduate
Accounting
certification
Associate's Degree
Business/Commerce, General

Hurdles

The Noise I Shed

From Family:

"As a first generation college graduate, I had a lot of people, especially family, label me a sell-out and accuse me of thinking I was better than them. This was very disheartening because family was everything growing up. "

Challenges I Overcame

Financial