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Here comes the future

With a youth-be-served spirit in mind, IB highlights Madison’s most promising young professionals in its annual 40 Under 40 presentation.

(page 5 of 12)

Jake Peters

Principal
SVA Certified Public Accountants
Age: 39

According to SVA president/CEO Carl Schultz, Jake Peters had an epiphany about three years ago “when he grew from a tax professional into a true business consultant.” That change was also one of the most challenging, admits Peters, because it meant changing gears from what he knew to what he proved to be very talented at — consulting and business advising.

Peters recently launched a new line of business for SVA that is based on innovation consulting, and he was proud to be hand-selected for two internal groups targeted for grooming both in sales and in helping to lead SVA’s future growth.

In the community, Peters serves on the board of Community Coordinated Childcare. He runs marathons and is an accomplished musician with his band, The Field. Peters, a ballroom dancer who has competed in regional competitions, would love to compete on “Dancing With the Stars.”

Brian Gaumont

Senior Manager
Wipfli LLP
Age: 30

In his time at Wipfli, Brian Gaumont has not only been productive — securing over $1 million in gross revenue in FY17 — he has learned a few things:

  • Never judge a book, or a CPA firm, by its cover.  Wipfli, he states, is an amazing organization with dynamic individuals, visionary leaders, and close to 50% of its revenue from consulting services.
  • Focus on making the most significant impact possible, even when feeling like a fish out of water. The UW–La Crosse graduate majored in sports management, but his minor in business administration has proved to be more professionally fruitful.
  • Being different is awesome. Coming to Wipfli with a business development background gave him a rare opportunity to help associates improve their sales and marketing competencies. Notes Gaumont: “Most sales environments ask only one thing of you — sell!”

Nicole Gralapp

Principal
SVA Certified Public Accountants
Age: 34

Nicole Gralapp’s role in diversifying SVA’s management was accomplished in large measure through her professional contributions. You can’t break the glass ceiling without being a top performer, so when it came time for the accounting firm to provide a more comprehensive approach to exit planning, it was Gralapp who took the lead.

Over the next decade, statistics show that 79% of business owners plan to exit their business, yet only 18% have talked to someone who has expertise in exit planning. By its own client research, SVA knew that the first expert businesspeople turn to when they contemplate selling or succeeding their business is their CPA. So Gralapp developed the firm’s “exit strategy” by researching options for a consulting methodology and software platform. The UW–Whitewater grad and Doyenne Group ambassador is in the final stages of earning a certified exit planner designation.

(Continued)

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