Karen Oman '75

Karen Oman was the founder and President of Certes Financial Pros, an organization specializing in the placement of high level financial professionals in industry-leading companies on a project and permanent basis. Certes Financial Pros has 170 employees and 2005 revenues near $20 million.

Karen graduated from the College of St. Benedict in 1975 with a BS in Accounting and gained her CPA status in 1977. After working as an accountant for many years of escalating responsibility (this means very long hours in finance speak), Karen realized that she needed to find a balance, and this could no longer be compromised. She began to consult for the same Fortune 500 companies she once worked for and immediately saw a need for high level financial executives who could join a company for a brief time, emerge themselves seamlessly into the culture, and hit the ground running. Her work load grew, and with that, her staff. In 1994, she created Certes.

Karen lead her company through tremendous growth while sharing her views on building company culture and creating award winning employee-oriented communities to companies, universities, and organizations around the country. The philosophy which separates her company from others is, "Treat others as you would like to be treated...It works in business too!"

Since her company's inception in 1994, she has been recognized for her leadership and creativity including "National Best Employer," from Working Woman Magazine, one of the ten best bosses in America, from Fortune Small Business Magazine, "Ernst Young Entrepreneur of the Year," and "Woman Business Owner of the Year".

On February 25th, 2011, Karen passed away. Her obituary is below. She will be missed by many.

Oman, Karen Louise (Boes) Age 57, passed away at home surrounded by family on Feb. 25, 2011. Preceded in death by brother Ronald Boes (died in infancy). Survived by parents, Vern and Lois Boes; sisters, Cynthia Boes and Sandra O'Brien (Kevin); husband, Jim; and daughters, Jennifer Oman, Lindsay Ring (Declan), and Annie Isler. She is best known in the Twin Cities as founder of Certes Financial Pros and FEWNET. She won many awards for company culture and treatment of employees including Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year and One of Ten Best Bosses, Fortune Small Business. Certes' ethical business practices has created a wave of work-life balance for financial professionals since 1992. As a mother, she was an avid supporter of her daughters' activities in New York and Los Angeles. As a writer, she inspired thousands through her website www.timetobreathe.com and her children's book "Gifts of the Heart." She loved musicals, caramel, singing, shopping, drawing, cold milk, laughing, helping others accomplish their dreams, and enjoying the simplicities of life. Her lifetime's generosity will be felt for generations to come. Wake and Reception: Mar. 20, 2-5 PM, Thomson- Dougherty Mansion, 2535 Park Ave, Mpls. Mass of Christian Burial Mar. 21, 10:30 AM, St. Joseph's Catholic Church, 1310 Main St., Hopkins. Lunch and Burial to follow. Memorials to ProLife Across America, P.O. Box 18669, Mpls, MN 55418. Historic Thomson-Dougherty 612-871-4407