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Gateway students bring home several state DECA honors; qualify for nationals

News Release: 

Eight students from Gateway Collegiate DECA captured first-place honors – and several others took second place and third place – at the 52nd Wisconsin Collegiate DECA annual Spring Competitive Events Conference held March 5 to March 8 in Madison.

The strong showing results in 36 Gateway students qualifying for the International Career Development Conference to be held April 22-April 27 in Washington DC.

Students capturing first-place honors, and the event they competed in:

  • Mark Short (Kenosha), Accounting
  • Tanya Galvan (Burlington), Human Resources Management
  • Christopher Shogren (Kenosha), Professional Sales
  • Rachel Bahr (Burlington), Ryan Billot (Whitewater) and James Wollman (Genoa City), Team, Financial Statement Analysis
  • Lindsey Brieski (Racine) and Jeanne Gomez (Racine) Team, Business Law
  • Galvan, Erica Pitner (Burlington), and Sabrina Furloni (Kenosha) were selected as Wisconsin Collegiate DECA students of the year

Students capturing second-place honors, and the event they competed in:

  • Steven Kaywood (Lake Geneva), Eric Steve Cabrera (Lake Geneva), and Justin Gustafson (Lake Geneva), Team, Business Law
  • Brady Ritacco (Elkhorn), Entrepreneurship – Starting a Business
  • Flory Jerez (Kenosha), Banking Financial Services
  • As a group, Gateway students took second place in the Chapter of the Year Award and the Community Service Award

Students taking third-place honors, and the event they competed in:

  • Amanda Depatis (Racine), Travel and Tourism
  • Robert Moore (Kenosha), Professional Sales
  • As a group, Gateway students took third place in the Diamond Award category.

Several Gateway students were finalists and qualified to compete at the international conference in the following events, as well:

  • Michael O’Connor (Kenosha), Fashion Merchandising
  • Aaron Cole (Kenosha), Hotel and Lodging
  • Furloni, Jessica Floren (Elkhorn), Sarah Greeley (Racine) and Brandy Hickey (Kenosha), Restaurant and Food Service Management
  • Kayla Groves (Kenosha), Retail Management
  • Erica Pitner (Burlington), Connie Howen (Lake Geneva), Rebecca Balmes (Kenosha) and Laura Thomsen (Kenosha), Business Ethics
  • Angela Ratkowski (Elkhorn), Marketing Management
  • Nicole Hughes (Lake Geneva) and Tracy Perkins (Burlington), Business-to-Business Marketing
  • Greg Pitner (Burlington), Jake Fedrigon (Racine), and Colleen Koch (Milwaukee), Professional Sales
  • Leonardo Hibarra (Racine), Sarah Koch (Franksville) and Elizabeth Michalski Reis (Lake Geneva), Sales Management Meeting

Several students also garnered statewide accolades within collegiate DECA:

  • Mary Gonzalez was selected as special events liaison for the Wisconsin Collegiate DECA state officer team
  • As a group, Gateway students also took first place in the Civic Consciousness Award.

More nearly 470 students from 15 college DECA collegiate chapters across Wisconsin competed at the conference. Students competed in 20 marketing, management, and accounting events judged by business professionals from across the state.