Baker Tilly Admits 20 New Partners

Chicago-based Baker Tilly (FY18 net revenue of $578.4 million) admitted 20 new partners specializing in a variety of industries and services across the firm, effective June 1.

“Each of our new partners is a role model who demonstrates leadership and superior technical knowledge in their area of specialization,” says Baker Tilly CEO Alan Whitman. “We are proud of these new partners and look forward to them helping us become the advisory CPA firm of the future.”

Baker Tilly’s newest partners are:

  • Yunis Altahami, Assurance – Manufacturing and Distribution (Southfield, Mich.)
  • Carol Bolles, Assurance – Financial Services (Minneapolis)
  • Kevin Brandt, Consulting – Business Information Systems (Washington, D.C.)
  • Jeremy Chapman, Assurance – Commercial (Philadelphia)
  • Ashley Deihr, Consulting – Risk, Internal Audit and Cybersecurity (Washington, D.C.)
  • Brigid Elliott-Boger, Tax – Baker Tilly Advantage (Madison, Wis.)
  • Jennifer Finger, Assurance – Manufacturing and Distribution (Chicago and Houston)
  • Paul Frantz, Assurance – State and Local Government (Milwaukee)
  • Shanté George, Consulting – Forensic, Litigation and Valuation Services (New York)
  • Patrick Heavens, Assurance – Health care (Philadelphia)
  • Andrea Jansen, Assurance – State and Local Government (Madison)
  • Zachary Keenan, Assurance – Manufacturing and Distribution (Allentown, Pa.)
  • Amanda Klein, Consulting – Enterprise Transformation Services (Milwaukee)
  • Joseph McCaffrey, Consulting – Government Contractor Advisory Services (Washington, D.C.)
  • Tracey Nguyen, Consulting – Transactions (Philadelphia)
  • John Romano, Consulting – Risk, Internal Audit and Cybersecurity – Financial Services (Philadelphia)
  • Donna Scaffidi, Tax – Specialty Tax (Milwaukee)
  • Christopher Schmidt, Assurance – Commercial (Appleton, Wis.)
  • Renee Schwartz, Tax – Construction and Real Estate (Minneapolis)
  • Mallory Thomas, Consulting – Risk, Internal Audit and Cybersecurity (Minneapolis)

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LBMC Admits Seven New Shareholders

Brentwood, Tenn.-based LBMC (FY18 net revenue of $104.3 million) announced leadership appointments to accommodate company growth in areas dedicated to serving a variety of middle market and health care client needs. LBMC has named seven new shareholders, the largest new shareholder class in the firm’s more than 30-year history.

“I am pleased to welcome seven new shareholders to the LBMC family and congratulate them on their outstanding achievements,” says Jeff Drummonds, CEO of LBMC. “These exceptional leaders represent the largest new shareholder class in the history of our firm. This milestone is indicative not only of our significant growth, but also our commitment to providing opportunities to leaders that exemplify our shared vision to make LBMC the best choice for clients and colleagues. I look forward to seeing them lead the way as we continue to expand our national reach while maintaining our high level of client service delivery.”

The promotions include experts from seven different practice areas: health care and private equity tax services, wealth advisory, transaction advisory, valuation and litigation, health care valuation, information security and assurance. The new shareholders include three leaders in the firm’s Knoxville, Tenn., office and four in the Brentwood office.

Ben Carver specializes in the health care and health care IT industries with an emphasis on private equity and venture capital backed companies. Carver assists clients with a variety of tax issues including tax compliance, tax accounting assistance, financial statement reporting, multi-state tax planning and merger integration.

Bill Dean is the East Tennessee market lead for Information Security. He is responsible for incident response, digital forensics, electronic discovery and litigation support for the Information Security Services division.

Andy Lowe serves as the Knoxville Market Leader and head of the Valuation & Litigation Support Services group in the firm’s Knoxville office. Lowe performs valuation engagements of closely held businesses and business interests for gift, estate and income tax planning and financial reporting, intangible asset valuations including business combinations and goodwill impairment testing. He also provides litigation support services for family law and commercial litigation, as well as merger and acquisition and business transition services.

April Mitchell advises high wealth individuals and families, trusts and estates on complex tax matters. Her experience includes coordinating tax services to closely held businesses in various industries as well as consulting in areas including wealth transfer, real estate holdings, investment partnerships, foreign investment reporting and private foundations.

Jayme Parmakian works with private-equity backed and closely held companies in the health care industry. In addition to tax compliance and consulting work, Parmakian coordinates tax services for the firm’s transaction advisory group working on both buy and sell side diligence and structuring.

Katie Tarr specializes in Compensation Valuation (CV) services including assisting health care organizations in determining the fair market value of physician compensation arrangements. Tarr also has experience in the valuation of physician practices and other types of health care service arrangements, as well as due diligence and clinician compensation consulting.

Andrew Usery manages assurance engagements for family owned, private-equity backed and other closely held entities. His industry experience includes manufacturing, distribution, foreign-owned, services, construction and broker-dealers. He also serves retail companies and FINRA-regulated broker-dealer clients. He is a firm leader in the use of data mining and analytics.

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Grant Thornton Names Alan Herrmann as West Region Tax Practice Leader

Alan Herrmann

Chicago-based Grant Thornton LLP (FY18 net revenue of $1.9 billion) has named Alan Herrmann as the firm’s West region tax practice leader. In his new role, Herrmann will manage tax operations across Grant Thornton’s 13 West region offices to expand the firm’s presence, collaborate across service lines and develop talent.  “Alan has proven himself to be an impressive tax professional dedicated to creating innovative solutions that best meet the needs of our clients,” says Brian Lucas, national tax operations leader at Grant Thornton. “His business acumen and leadership skills will spur continued growth across the firm’s West region.”

Herrmann joined Grant Thornton in 2002, and has experience in the taxation, planning and structuring of consolidated corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies and S corporations. He works with clients across numerous industries to provide tax planning services and consults on specific tax issues, such as ASC 740, reorganizations, mergers and acquisitions, and accounting methods. He is also actively involved with Grant Thornton’s Washington National Tax Office.

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Managed IT Security Services Firm Joins EisnerAmper

New York-based EisnerAmper LLP (FY19 net revenue of $380.6 million) announced that managed IT security services firm CSAM Marketing Inc. has joined the firm. CSAM’s leadership team and IT engineers have become part of EisnerAmper’s Process, Risk & Technology Solutions (PRTS).

Founded in 1984 and with locations across the New York and New Jersey metropolitan area, CSAM provides:

  • Managed IT Services – Network/server management, disaster recovery
  • Security Services – Monitoring network, endpoint security, virtual CISO
  • IT Solutions – Strategic IT planning, cloud system design and migration

“Prior to this, we specialized in identifying, measuring and monitoring a client’s cybersecurity risks. Now, with the technology and talent of CSAM, we can also provide real-time remediation services,” says Jerry Ravi, EisnerAmper partner and PRTS practice leader. “This exciting, strategic move is at the core of our philosophy of bringing technology-enabled services and solutions to clients of all niches, sizes and growth stages.”

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Shier Named AAM’s 2019 Marketer of the Year

Holly Shier

Holly Shier

Holly Shier, principal and chief marketing officer at Troy, Mich.-based Rehmann, has received the Association for Accounting Marketing’s (AAM) 2019 Marketer of the Year award, sponsored by INSIDE Public Accounting (IPA).

The winner was announced by IPA June 12 at AAM’s annual Summit, held in partnership with the AICPA ENGAGE conference in Las Vegas.

Shier leads marketing and communications efforts, brand awareness and growth strategies for Rehmann, which was ranked No. 41 on the 2018 IPA 100 list of largest accounting firms in the country. Shier is responsible for a $1.7 million marketing budget and supervises a staff of nearly 20 individuals.

Shier has led a transformation of Rehmann’s marketing approach and ensured integration of its “OneRehmann” service model. The firm’s service model deploys cross-functional teams to address a broad range of issues clients face, rather than promoting individual services.

“Holly instills a natural desire to help our clients be successful by bringing our OneRehmann service model to bear, ensuring we are consistently communicating our transformative solutions,” says CEO Randy Rupp, who nominated Shier for the prestigious award.

Rupp credits her with the “colossal effort” of researching and articulating the needs of clients and creating go-to-market strategies for the firm’s various niches. 

Additionally, Shier analyzed data from client surveys, panels and focus groups to create the firm’s latest advertising campaign, Rupp says. Through the data, a story emerged that clients weren’t particularly interested in services, per se, but in resolving issues surrounding business growth, transitioning to retirement and managing their money afterward. “Holly had the foresight to dig into the emotion behind these critical moments to understand what spurred the need for our services.”

“The marketing industry is tremendously dynamic,” said Shier. “There are constant changes and trends to be aware of because the dial is always moving. To be recognized as Marketer of the Year is a true honor. Accolades like this highlight the hard work, dedication and support of my team and it’s a great feeling to be noticed in such a competitive industry.”

Shier, referred to as the firm’s “dot-connector,” has restructured the marketing team, created a formalized business combination process and obtained naming rights to the Rehmann Club in the Little Caesars Arena, home of the Detroit Red Wings and the Detroit Pistons.

In addition to her work developing the firm’s strategic vision and serving on numerous firm committees, Shier is heavily involved in the Detroit chapter of the American Marketing Association. She served as president from 2018-2019 and volunteers for DECA, a nonprofit organization that prepares students for careers in finance and marketing, among others.

This is the sixth year that IPA has sponsored the Marketer of the Year award. A panel of independent judges, themselves leaders in the profession, were selected by IPA to review and score each of the 2019 nominees.

H&R Block to Acquire a Small Business Financial Solutions Platform

H&R Block Inc. announced that it entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Wave Financial Inc., a financial solutions platform focused on changing the way small business owners manage their finances. Based in Toronto, Wave is innovating and disrupting the small business market with free accounting, invoicing, and receipt-tracking software. Wave generates revenue by offering payment processing, payroll services, and bookkeeping services, with additional products currently in development. All of these products and services are offered through a comprehensive platform used by over 400,000 small businesses globally every month.

“I’m extremely excited to welcome Wave, an innovative company with an outstanding team, to H&R Block,” says Jeff Jones, president and CEO of H&R Block. “Bookkeeping and cash flow management are significant pain points for small business owners and essential to successful annual tax preparation. Wave addresses these concerns by delivering financial solutions and a simple user experience on a single platform. Wave provides us the opportunity to accelerate our small business strategy and is a great strategic fit, as both companies can leverage each other’s capabilities to bring tax and financial solutions to small business owners, serving more clients in more ways.”

The acquisition expands H&R Block’s product and client portfolio and enhances its position in the small business market. It also provides new growth opportunities as Wave’s disruptive pricing and low-cost customer acquisition model has resulted in rapid, organic growth.

Wave’s innovative platform supports the large and expanding small business market, which includes 31 million small businesses in North America and more than 100,000 new businesses created every month. Additionally, approximately 57 million U.S. workers are freelancers, a number that is expected to grow to roughly 87 million by 2027, representing over half of the U.S. workforce.

CBIZ Expands Its Public Company Tax Practice with the Addition of Lisa Stabile

Lisa Stabile

Lisa Stabile

Cleveland-based CBIZ (FY18 net revenue of $785 million) has expanded its Public Company Tax Practice with the addition of Lisa Stabile. Stabile has joined the company as a director and works out of both the Providence, R.I. and Boston offices. Prior to joining the company, she was a director in the Providence office at International Game Technology PLC.

“I am thrilled to welcome Lisa to our team of Directors. Her addition enhances the depth of resources and expertise that we provide to our clients, and showcases our commitment to delivering high-quality professional services to our clients,” says Scott Wragg, senior managing director of the New England offices.

Stabile has more than 20 years of leadership experience providing tax services to a variety of industries, with specialized expertise in servicing public companies. She has extensive experience with ASC 740 reporting and SOX 404 internal controls, and assists clients with federal, state and foreign tax compliance projects, as well as tax audits. Additionally, she provides tax department outsourcing services and assists clients with implementing standardized tax processes and procedures.

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Prager Metis’ Roth Named MP for the Northeast Region

Lori Roth

Lori Roth

New York-based Prager Metis CPAs (FY18 net revenue of $98.2 million) announced that Lori Roth has been named MP for the Northeast Region effective June 5.

Prager Metis has combined the New York and the Mid-Atlantic Regions to form the new Northeast Region. As MP for the Northeast Region, Roth provides leadership and guidance to partners and team members. Prior to this new role, Roth was the MP of the Mid-Atlantic Region, which she has grown tremendously in the last four years.

“Lori has always been a respected member of our leadership team,” says Glenn Friedman, CEO and Co-MP of Prager Metis. “This role utilizes Lori’s unmatched leadership and strategic mindset, and I’m confident that Prager Metis will continue to see tremendous growth with her in charge of the Northeast Region.”

Working in the accounting industry since 1984, Roth specializes in audit and assurance services, litigation support and business valuations. She has worked with clients in a variety of industries including closely held businesses, real estate, and the U.S. subsidiaries of foreign banks and corporations.

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Dawson Joins Frazier & Deeter as an International Tax Partner

James Dawson

James Dawson

Atlanta-based Frazier & Deeter (FY18 net revenue of $96 million) announced that James Dawson has joined the firm as a tax partner with a focus on international tax.

“Jim’s years of experience serving the complex needs of global enterprises makes him an excellent addition to our tax team,” says Terri Lawson, PIC of Tax. “As our international tax practice continues to grow his expertise in foreign tax planning and cross border transactions will add value to Frazier & Deeter’s multi-national clients.”

Dawson will serve as a business and tax advisor to growing U.S. and foreign enterprises, focusing on tax efficient global supply chain management, structuring of international business models and operations, cross border transactions, project management and coordination of services in foreign jurisdictions.

“It is exciting to contribute to a rapidly growing international firm like Frazier & Deeter, with an entrepreneurial mindset and focus on exceeding client expectations,” says Dawson.

Prior to joining FD, Dawson served as an international tax partner with two accounting firms, serving in both U.S. and international leadership positions.

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AICPA to Oversee New Internet Domain for CPAs

The AICPA is in the process of being awarded the .cpa domain and is currently in a contract execution phase with the Internet’s global governing body, the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). The AICPA’s role in administering .cpa will provide a defined global domain for CPAs worldwide to connect with their clients with increased trust, security and verification.

“By overseeing the .cpa domain in collaboration with other global CPA organizations, the AICPA can help promote CPAs’ visibility and protect their professional standing online,” says Barry Melancon, the president and CEO of the AICPA. “We also want the public to have confidence that someone using a .cpa domain address for email or a website is affiliated with the CPA profession.”

The new domain extension will be available to CPAs and their firms and will signal a clear connection to the profession. For example, Firm Name, LLC, could have a website address of www.firmname.cpa. Jane Smith, an employee at that firm, could have an email address of jsmith@firmname.cpa.

“Today, there’s a lack of authentication and growing mistrust of online information,” says Erik Asgeirsson, president and CEO of CPA.com, the AICPA’s technology subsidiary. “This is why many leading companies and communities, such as Amazon, KPMG, and the banking industry are moving to restricted top-level domains. We’re looking forward to bringing this important new capability to the profession.”

More details on registering a domain name will be available later this year. For additional information and the opportunity to sign up for notifications, please visit https://domains.cpa.com