GenXYZ: Randy Watkins, 36
Partner, Denver-based Anton Collins Mitchell LLP (ACM)
In 2010, Watkins was admitted as ACM’s youngest partner. He continues to serve his industry as the president of the board of directors for the Northern Colorado Chapter of the Colorado Society of CPAs.
Was being an accountant always the plan?
I grew up wanting to be an engineer. My dad was a CPA but he never pushed me in that direction. In high school, however, I took an accounting class and did well. So my dad encouraged me to go to UNC (University of Northern Colorado), which was his alma mater.
Have you ever regretted the decision?
Not for a minute. I get to see the ins and outs of so many interesting businesses.
How did you get your start after college?
I could have gone and worked at my dad’s firm, but he was wise enough not to allow that to happen right away. When my dad was ready to retire, I bought my dad’s half of the business and we grew the practice. But coming from a larger organization, I missed that, so we merged the practice into ACM.
You and your wife have two young daughters, you have a busy job and you volunteer. When do you sleep?
I’m lucky I don’t need a lot of sleep. And you have to be selective and only commit to things you’re passionate about. For me, that includes early-childhood education. I’m the president of Northern Colorado Active 20/30, which raises money for disadvantaged kids. Our slogan is ‘One never stands so tall as when kneeling to help
Do you look for that passion when you hire people?
I do, and that means I’m looking for someone with energy and who wants to experience new things. I’ve always been a ‘yes’ person, and I look for that in others. I said ‘yes’ through my career because I’ve always looked at these chances as a last opportunity to try something new.