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Get to Know Our Board: Ivan Ortega

I currently work in Marketing Analytics, which means I spend the day analyzing data, building and validating data models, hypotheses, and general data trending. I write code, build charts, reports, dashboards ... pretty much anything that will help me convey the message we are trying to impart. Early In my life, I received an associate's degree in finance and then went off to study computer programming. A short 20 years later, I returned to complete my bachelor's degree in business management. I am currently looking at Masters programs in computer science. I joined the board of Mosaic Players last year as Treasurer. I felt it would be an excellent opportunity to learn about the early stages of a non-profit and be a part of helping it grow. I like the causes that we stand for and the mission of inclusion and diversity.

What are your three favorite foods?

My favorite foods are steak tacos, cucumber with Tajin, lemon, salt, and Pizza, not necessarily in one meal.

What's your favorite play?

Any play that my daughter (Founding Member Natalie Ortega) is currently in, even when I fall asleep. :-) What are you reading right now?

I don’t generally read books, mostly articles, and sometimes technical manuals if I am learning something new or researching something to learn.

Which song can you listen to all day long? None, I get bored quickly. I need variety in my music. I usually shuffle between a thousand or so of my “top” songs.

If you had to teach a class on one thing, what would you teach? I would teach Data Analytics or general computer aptitude. These are things for which I have a strong passion.

How would your friends describe you? I would rather not know. ;-)

Do you collect anything? I tried collecting watches and then realized how expensive they could get, so I no longer collect watches.

If you could live anywhere on this planet, where would you choose to live? I would love to live somewhere where the weather is not so extreme, on average 75 degrees a year with many outdoor activities, just in case I decide to take that up.

As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? I wanted to be a fighter pilot because it looked cool on tv. Other than that, I wanted to be a computer systems analyst but did not know what that was. I read an article that said it was an excellent job for the future. I think I eventually ended up in a technical field based on this early interest.

What was the worst job you ever had?

I learned something from each of my jobs, and they all made me better in the end, so I can’t call one worse than the other. The most difficult or taxing for me was when I was 18 years old, shoveling hot sand in a foundry where the temperature regularly topped 100 degrees. I remember wondering why the hell I took that job. In the end, although a tough job, it taught me to appreciate hard work and the feeling of accomplishment that accompanies it.

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