Our goal is to help business owners ascend to a better life. And while you’ll find us listed individually below, you can be sure that we work together as a team to ensure your success.
Paul’s awareness of the needs of small businesses began as an adolescent when he assisted his mother in her home-based childcare business. At that time, organizations like Ascendus, which empower low-to-moderate income business owners through access to capital and business support, did not exist. Looking back, he often wonders how it might have changed his own life if it had. Conversely, he is also acutely aware of the tenacity, creativity, and, yes, hopeful optimism of immigrant entrepreneurs since both of his parents immigrated from Ecuador to seek a better life in the United States. These challenges and strengths have fueled Paul’s passion to create a world of financial ascension for all.
The Board of Directors selected Paul to be the Chief Executive Officer of Ascendus in 2011 after serving as its Chief Financial and Operating Officer since 2007. Paul has transformed the organization in almost every dimension during his tenure as CEO. Under his leadership and with the active engagement and support of his Leadership Team and Board, he led the effort to define the organization’s six shared core values, developed home-grown leadership within the organization, doubled the longevity of staff tenure, increased productivity in annual lending twelve times (12x) while maintaining a 90%+ net promoter score, quintupled (5x) the net asset position of the organization, expanded the service footprint from New York state to the entire country, successfully transitioned new technology platforms and credit risk scoring models to support lending operations, achieved high portfolio quality with 7.1% cumulative write-offs (versus 8% target), successfully launched several new lending products, and successfully rebranded the entire organization.
From Paul’s perspective, these achievements were merely precursors for the even brighter future to come. Ascendus is now focused on supporting an entrepreneur’s entire financial journey, starting with access to capital and ending with improving the owner’s financial health.
Before joining Ascendus, Paul worked for three years as a CPA in the audit division of Deloitte & Touche, seven years as an investment banker on Wall Street, and four years in local community redevelopment focused on the commercial revitalization of Harlem and Upper Manhattan. Academically, the State of Washington Legislature selected Paul as one of only one hundred students from across the state to receive its Washington State Scholar Award, a complete, four-year college tuition scholarship. He used the scholarship to earn his BA in Accounting and Business Administration from the University of Washington. Paul also earned his MBA in Finance from Columbia Business School, where he attended as a Robert A. Toigo Fellow.