Since 1986, the Tavola Group team has assisted clients with various accounting and financial needs.
ABOUT THE FIRM
From the single, high-income individual who needs tax help, to the mid-sized business owner overwhelmed with the task of keeping his financial ship in order, we work as a team to identify systems and solutions tailored to the needs of each individual client.
Tavola prides itself on personalized and prompt service. Our goal is to assure our clients of the highest level of service and client satisfaction.
Steven Lewis, CPA
Steve is a graduate of Northern Illinois University where he received his undergraduate degree and a master's degree in taxation. Steve started the firm in 1986 as a sole proprietor. He takes an integrated approach by advising clients in all aspects of accounting and tax management. As a Quickbooks Proadvisor, Steve consults with clients on accounting issues, payroll and technical issues involving QuickBooks.
Steve currently lives in Las Vegas with his wife. Steve is proud of his daughter who is studying at UNLV. In his free time, Steve enjoys spending time with family, theatre, reading, bicycling and trap shooting.
Karen Detloff, CPA
Karen is a graduate of Roosevelt University where she earned her bachelor’s degree in accounting. She has a master's in taxation from Northern Illinois University. She joined the firm that became known as Lewis, Jacobs, & Detloff Ltd in 1997. Her corporate background is varied and includes experience in most facets of accounting. Her experience in budgeting and financial analysis enables her to help clients with their operational and financial planning. Karen is a member of The Illinois CPA Society.
Karen is married with three sons and lives in Schaumburg, Illinois. She enjoys spending time with friends and family. When not at home, you can find her and her husband traveling the country in their RV.
Gabriel Malavolti, JD, LLM, CPA
Gabe brings a technical background in financial products, insurance, real estate, and advanced tax planning to the firm where he serves as a holistic advisor for our clients. Before working at Tavola Group, Gabe was an international tax manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers specializing in international business structuring and foreign currency exposures. Gabe received his juris doctor and masters in tax law from Loyola University Chicago School of Law in 2014, and is also a certified public accountant, licensed insurance agent, realtor, and financial advisor. Gabe has served many roles for small and middle market business owners over the years including risk manager, CFO, legal counsel, accountant, insurance agent, and more.
In his free time, Gabe loves traveling and spends a good part of the year traveling the world with his wife and three children while working remotely.
Neil Rago, CPA
Neil Rago is a certified public accountant licensed in Indiana and Illinois who focuses on servicing closely held businesses and their owners. Neil earned his bachelor’s degree from Olivet Nazarene University where he studied accounting and finance. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and Indiana CPA Society. He strives to gain a thorough understanding of his clients’ core operations to help them navigate complex transactions and implement tax strategies to better service their specific business objectives. Interacting with clients regularly allows Neil to take a proactive approach in identifying potential issues and help them enact solutions to maximize results.
Neil lives in Indiana with his wife and is expecting his first child. Neil enjoys spending time with family, attending concerts, boating, and working on his golf swing.
CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER
Maria Sentic, CPA
Maria is a graduate of Northwestern University where she earned her bachelor’s degree in economics and international studies. Maria joins Tavola Group as a licensed certified public accountant with over 10 years of experience in outsourced accounting, technology solutions, business process automation, and strategic consulting. Maria works with her clients to analyze financial results and optimize business processes in order to gain efficiency while also fostering growth.
Maria lives in Lincolnwood, Illinois, with her husband and four kids. She spends her free time attending her kids' sporting events, trying out new recipes, watching movies, and hanging out with friends and family. In the summers, you will find her working from her second home in Croatia.
DIRECTOR OF TAX
Danny Torres, CPA
Danny joins Tavola Group with over 15 years of public accounting experience, primarily practicing on tax compliance, accounting, and consulting. He earned his master's degree in accountancy at the University of Texas Pan American. Danny proactively works with his clients to identify opportunities and risks from a tax perspective on various business and personal matters. His years of experience in public accounting enables him to serve as an asset to clients by providing relevant and timely advice to business owners for their internal tax and accounting needs and business success.
In his personal time, Danny enjoys spending time with his wife and three kids, extended family, watching sporting events, going to concerts, and catching up with friends.
DIRECTOR OF ADVISORY SERVICES
James Kelly, CPA
James is a graduate of San Diego State University where he earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting and master’s degree in information systems. James joins Tavola Group as a CPA with over 20 years of experience in accounting, management, systems design, and analytics. James works with his clients to create actionable intelligence from their existing accounting and business data.
James enjoys spending time with his two daughters, watching and attending baseball games and spends time in his backyard batting cage.
MANAGER OF ACCOUNTING SERVICES
Angela Anderson, MBA
Angela received her Master of Business Administration, with emphasis in Accounting, from Chadron State College in 2013. She joined the firm in February 2023 bringing with her a well-rounded twenty-five years of experience in the accounting field. Angela has extensive experience in non-profit accounting, finance and management. She has previously worked in public accounting managing a growing Accounting Services department serving up to 300 clients per year.
Angela lives in Wyoming and enjoys going to concerts and traveling. Spending time with family and friends, especially her two kids, Michael and Tristan, are what she loves to do most. Angela also enjoys giving back to the community; especially to non-profits that have a focus on children.
SENIOR TAX ASSOCIATE
Chris Vitale, CPA
Chris joins Tavola Group as a support to our tax department. He is a graduate of Liberty University's School of Business with a master's degree in accounting and, in addition to his CPA, he has obtained professional certifications as a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) as well as an Enrolled Agent (EA) with the IRS.
Chris loves face-to-face interactions with his clients and with his diverse experience in nonprofit, government and public accounting he is set up well to provide quality and timely accounting and tax advice on any accounting, tax or business matter.
In his free time, Chris loves to spend time with his wife of 12 years, his four children, and his dachshund named Moriarty. Also, Chris is heavily involved in his local church where he is on pastoral staff and leads worship with his wife.
DIRECTOR OF CLIENT EXPERIENCE
Dipal "Dee" Blackowicz
Dipal is a graduate of Northern Illinois University where she earned a bachelor's degree in Public Health. Dipal is a licensed producer of Life & Health with 9 years of insurance experience primarily in Employee Benefits. During this time, she worked with a range of small employer groups under 50 and large employer groups up to 900 employees. Regardless of client size, her goal was to ensure every client received excellent customer service and found creative solutions to meet client needs. She looks forward to meeting new people and opportunities to enhance lives of others through service, knowledge, and experience.
Outside of Tavola Group, Dipal, her husband and 2 children enjoy taking their family dog to the dog park. She also appreciates a good summer festival, exploring new restaurants with friends, and baking.
DIRECTOR OF OPERATIONS
Kim received her associate's degree from Davenport College in 1984. She joined the firm in 2012 and quickly became an integral member of the team. Kim manages the operations of the firm and overall client service. She acts as the liaison between our clients and our CPA’s.
Kim has been married for 36 years and has two daughters. She loves to play golf, travel and spend time with her 3 grandchildren and family.