Sunday, July 3, 2011

Weekly News & Agenda for Tuesday,



During our roundtable introductions, you're welcome to share what's new personally or professionally, along with any networking needs. We'll give particular focus to those seeking advice, referrals, job search assistance, or simply the opportunity to disseminate business information or plug your business.


Open Forum. The open forums are often some of our most productive and engaging discussions. Our first priority is to help anyone with networking needs, but we also discuss timely topics and relevant issues. If you can spare some time on Tuesday morning, swing by, grab some coffee, and re-engage with your fellow academy grads.


7/12/11: Michael Hirschman with RIGOR Engineering will talk about his company and the types of positions they are trying to fill in government contracting, particularly TS/SCI cleared individuals and IT professionals. Michael will also discuss the future of America's technical workforce.


Ron Meier (USMA '66) is moving to Cumming, GA within the next week, to be close to family. This is a great loss for us, as Ron has contributed so much to the group over the past 15 years. He has scheduled many great speakers and led numerous interesting discussions himself, in addition to providing detailed assistance to fellow academy grads no matter the situation. We will miss Ron greatly, and wish him all the best.


Biznet member Dale Degen (USMA '95) requests our ssistance in finding veterans whom his wife can hire for her rapidly growing business. We're referring Dale to some veteran's assistance organizations who've recently spoken at Biznet, but please also read below and let him know if you have additional advice or referrals. Dale writes as follows:

I have a request for the group, as I am looking for help in placing returning vets in to a stable job at a rapidly growing company based out of Longmont, CO.

Three years ago my wife, Melissa Degen, started Sweet Escape Pastries, LLC (, a company focused on providing to restaurants premium par-baked breads, pizza crusts, pastries and desserts that just happen to be gluten-free. Her B.S. in electrical engineering and professional training at the Culinary School of the Rockies provided a solid foundation for growing the business at 100%+ year on year growth through the worst recession this country has seen for decades. Starting with just one restaurant in Denver, she became known as the premier provider of gluten-free baked goods in Colorado. She is now at 60+ restaurants and branching into territories outside of Colorado. Currently she has four full time employees, a certified dedicated gluten-free kitchen, a refrigerated delivery truck and has recently added various volume production technologies that have helped double operational efficiencies in order to keep up with the growing demand.

One of the largest challenges of growth has been finding quality people. In the current economic environment, you would think it would be easier, but we have not had good luck in finding people that have a good work ethic and want to be a part of really positive experience. We are searching for an organization that helps place vets that need a stable and structured work environment. They pay is not huge - it is generally slightly above minimum wage, but the perks are pretty good - we provide holiday vacation and many various smaller items that make the work day something to look forward to. We feel we can provide a stable environment with decent benefits for previously enlisted personnel that are searching for a job in Northern Colorado. If anyone can guide us to an organization that helps place vets having a tough time transitioning back to civilian life, we would be very grateful. We feel this is a great opportunity for anyone that may need a little structure and wants a chance to enter a rapidly growing industry with a company that will understand some of the challenges they may be facing upon returning from many years at war. If anyone in Biznet can point us in the right direction on how to seek out these individuals, we would be very grateful. Thank you in advance for any assistance that can be provided on this.

Best regards,
Dale Degen


Have a great Independence Day.

Joe Paniccia (USMA '84)
BizNet Coordinator

Service Academy BizNet of Denver meets weekly on Tuesdays at 0700 in the Marriott Hotel at the Denver Tech Center. From I-25, exit Belleview east, then turn north onto Syracuse Street. While the Marriott lots are paid parking (approx $2-4), you can park for FREE across the street at Garcia's Restaurant (we have their permission). Look for us in the seating area inside the Marriott's coffee shop. RSVP is not required. Dress is casual. Attendance is open to graduates of the federal service academies (USAFA, USCGA, USMA, USMMA, USNA). Our schedule, roster and other information are posted on the web site at

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