We are the humans behind the Ascent Accelerator and are driven by the impact of local innovation, inspired by resilient entrepreneurs, and empowered by our community.

CME Mentors

Jake Rishavy
Jake Rishavy Executive Director + Mastermind
Jake Rishavy has led economic development organizations and initiatives in Colorado for more than a decade and currently leads the Chaffee County EDC. His previous work includes co-founding two Denver-based nonprofit entrepreneurial ecosystems: Prime Health, aimed at facilitating the growth of Colorado-based health tech companies; and the Colorado Smart Cities Alliance, facilitating public private partnerships to deploy emerging technology.
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Tim Martinez
Tim MartinezGrowth Driver + Startup Advisor
Tim co-founded the Chaffee County EDC Ascent accelerator program, empowering entrepreneurs and equipping them with the tools to succeed. In addition to the accelerator, Chaffee County now has a mentor group of almost 50 experts, and the Ark_Angels financing Network of high net worth individuals investing in local startups. Tim recently signed with Startup Colorado as the Director of Program Development & Innovation.
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Abby Peters
Abby Peters Program Director / Mover & Shaker
Abby Peters serves as the Program Director for Central Mountain Entrepreneurs, a key initiative under the Chaffee County Economic Development Corporation. In this role, Abby oversees the design and implementation of programs aimed at supporting and nurturing startups and entrepreneurs in Colorado’s Central Mountains.
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Tara Reed
Tara Reed Administrative / Accounting + Solutions Provider Extraordinaire
Tara Reed serves as the Administrative and Accounting Support for the Chaffee County Economic Development Corporation (CCEDC). With a keen eye for detail and a robust background in financial management, Tara plays a pivotal role in ensuring the smooth operation of the CCEDC’s financial and administrative functions.
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Robin Vega
Robin VegaMarketing Director / Storyteller / Dream Defender
Robin Vega boasts over 20 years of experience in entrepreneurship, business, and marketing strategy. She has collaborated with clients across diverse industries such as music, cosmetics, technology, food & beverage, agriculture, and cannabis, helping them tell their stories through thoughtful design and authentic storytelling.
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