20 Under 40: Kacie Sawatzky’s future looks bright — blaze pink
Kacie Sawatzky and her husband moved to Grand County from Kansas in 2008 to escape hot Midwestern summers. Upon landing in Winter Park, Sawatzky accepted a job with Citywide bank and never looked back.
Today, she manages the regional bank’s Winter Park branch, is Citywide’s top lender, and started her own small business, Sunnyslope Designs. Sawatzky’s a busy mom who serves on the board for Grand Kids Learning Center and is the director of Church Project Winter Park’s children’s program.
What made you choose to live and work in Grand County?
My husband and I both grew up in Kansas and we were both over the heat. We each had fond memories of skiing here when we were younger, and liked the small-town feel of the Fraser Valley. We moved here in 2008, right in the middle of the recession. Although we don’t have any family up here, the friends we’ve made have become family!
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
I’m just living one day at a time these days, but in 10 years my son will be a teenager, yikes! I definitely see us still living in the same house, because we love our street and neighbors. I also foresee myself continuing to grow my side business, Sunnyslope Designs. I started by sewing face warmers, and now have my own blaze pink hunter safety apparel line. The sky’s the limit with what may happen in 10 years.
What kind of future do you see for your industry in the high country?
I have worked in the banking industry the entire 12 years we’ve lived here, and there is no doubt about it…banking is here to stay. However, how that looks will definitely change.The COVID pandemic has forced a lot of people to do remote banking and to learn new technology. Banks will have to continue to keep up with all these changes to remain competitive. I hope we can get back to all the sponsorships of events that I have grown to love during my time at Citywide Banks.
As for my side business, Sunnyslope Designs, I’m hoping that even more people will want to get out and hunt in the future! Providing for yourself is becoming more and more essential as we have all seen during this time.
If there were one thing you could change, what would it be and why?
Having the chance to live in attainable housing ourselves. I would wish more locals could have the opportunity to own their own home at an affordable price.
Who is your hero and why?
Any of the small business owners here in Grand County. My love for entrepreneurship makes me so proud of the people who had the courage to step out there and make a go at it.
I have had the privilege of helping some of these business owners set up their brand new accounts, and get to know them when they are just getting started. Shout out to all of you, you know who you are!
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