AAM Announces New Board of Directors

The Association for Accounting Marketing (AAM) announces its board of directors for the term beginning July 1. The association will be led by Laura Snyder, senior manager at Crowe Horwath, who assumes a one-year term as president.

Joining Snyder on the executive committee are:

  • Craig Browning, director of marketing, KWC, president-elect
  • Jen Lemanski, manager of practice growth, PKF Texas, vice president
  • Caren Rodriguez, director of marketing, DMJ & Co., secretary
  • Carrie Steffen, president and co-founder, The Whetstone Group, treasurer
  • Kristen Lewis, director of marketing, EisnerAmper, immediate past president

The officers are joined by 11 elected board members-at-large including:

  • Brian Swanson, founder/principal at Flashpoint Marketing
  • Mitch Reno, director of client experience/principal, Rehmann
  • Becca Davis, director of practice growth, Rea & Associates
  • Bonnie Buol Ruszczyk, president, BBR Marketing
  • Melissa Brogan, marketing director, Barnes Dennig
  • Chuck Ludmer, chief marketing officer, CohnReznick
  • Cheryl Bascomb, director of marketing and business development, BerryDunn
  • Mark Koziel, vice president, AICPA
  • Græme Gordon, executive director, Praxity
  • Pauline Gonnering, director of growth and operations, Cummings Keegan & Co.
  • Nathan Wozniak, marketing operations manager, BKD

PrimeGlobal Welcomes New Member Firms in Argentina, Germany

The accounting association, PrimeGlobal, is pleased to announce the addition of Argentinian firm, Estudio Castaño Gomez Castaños y Asociados to the association’s Latin America and Caribbean region. German firm GBZ Revisions und Treuhand AG is joining the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region.

GBZ Revisions und Treuhand AG has offices in both Kassel and Marburg, Germany. The firm employs a staff of over 100, which include auditors, tax and legal experts. GBZ believes the interdisciplinary approach is the most accurate in providing solutions for complex projects. Audit and audit-related professional services are provided locally, regionally and internationally.

Estudio Castaño Gomez Castaños y Asociados has been operating in Córdoba, the strategic center of Argentina, for more than 15 years.  Professional services are provided based upon the firm’s knowledge and experience in matters of accounting, tax and labor processes.

According to MPs Mariano Gomez Castaños and Juan Martin Castaño, the firm’s professionals receive ongoing education and training in order to provide dynamic and efficient solutions, tailored to each client’s individual needs. The firm’s core values are knowledge, aptitude and experience, and it provides its quality, professional services rooted in these values.

PrimeGlobal is comprised of approximately 300 highly successful independent public accounting firms in 85 countries.

Six New Members Join CPAConnect in Last Six Months

CPAConnect, an alliance of CPAmerica International, has welcomed six new members in the past six months.

“CPAConnect is a close group of practitioners who are committed to the principle of sharing with and learning from each other,” says D’Yãn Davis, senior member services manager. “We look forward to bringing these firms into that community and helping them improve through sharing.”

  • Bourque & Associates, based in Irvine, Calif., joined CPAConnect in December 2016. This firm serves small- to medium-sized businesses and private clients with tax planning, tax controversy / audits and tax compliance, business consulting, and business and personal accounting services.
  • Beta Solutions CPA, of Reston, Va., joined CPAConnect in December 2016. This full-service accounting and business services firm provides high-quality services to small businesses and individual taxpayers throughout Reston and the Greater Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
  • Dehner & Company CPAs, of Harleysville, Pa., joined CPAConnect in December 2016. Founded in 1992, this CPA/business advisory firm specializes in solving the tax and accounting needs of owner-operated businesses in the tri-state area.
  • Villela & Shilts, of Ocala, Fla., joined CPAConnect in January 2017. This full-service CPA and advisory firm provides hands-on experience, unique industry and service knowledge, and specializes in various niche and consulting services.
  • Jared G. Johnson, CPA, of Clemmons, N.C., joined CPAConnect in February 2017. Working primarily with small and medium-sized businesses, this firm helps clients who are facing multi-state compliance requirements in addition to the standard complexities of running a business. The firm aims to help clients realize their financial goals.
  • North Bay CPA, of Petaluma, Calif., joined CPAConnect in June 2017. This firm combines knowledge of tax and accounting with extensive experience gained from working with hundreds of businesses and individuals, offering services in tax planning and preparation, CFO/controller-for-hire services, estates and trusts, management and business consulting, and accounting services.

CPAConnect has nearly 175 members and is comprised of select accounting firms ranging from sole practitioners to multi-partner CPA firms nationwide.

Public Company CPAs Alliance Formed

Houston-based Thayer O’Neal Company has banded together with three other firms to form the basis of the Public Company CPAs Alliance (PCA), a nationwide network of CPA firms devoted to serving small and medium-sized public companies.

PCA members focus primarily on serving the small and middle market public companies that often are underserved by the large national accounting firms, Rainmaker Companies announced. PCA provides CPAs a network of peers that can exchange best practices and technical knowledge to deliver greater value to their clients. Members are selected for their experience and ability to provide proactive solutions to the accounting needs of public companies. PCA is a Texas non-profit corporation and is in the process of filing for not-for-profit status with the IRA as a 501 (C) (6) trade association.

Initial member firms include Thayer O’Neal Company, with offices in Houston and Sugar Land, Texas, Pritchett Siler and Hardy, with offices in Salt Lake City and Denver, Spiegel Accountancy Group of San Francisco, and Acquavella Chiarelli Shuster, with offices in New York and Iselin, N.J.

Founding member Thomas M. (Mickey) O’Neal says, “We established PCA because of the great need that exists in the marketplace for support in the nature of quality control systems, training and technical support to help firms that serve these clients in dealing with the increasingly complex regulations of the Securities and Exchange Commission as well as the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. Many firms who serve these small public clients have one or two partners and are very restricted because of rotation requirements for both engagement and EQR partners. PCA plans to assist with those issues.”

The initial members have engaged the Rainmaker Companies to manage the association.

PCA allows members to:

  • Provide evidence to the SEC and PCAOB of extensive resources, depth and expertise as it relates to working with publicly traded companies.
  • Create standards for quality control, engagement review and other expertise related to working with publicly traded companies.
  • Leverage member participation in training programs, marketing efforts and joint purchasing.
  • Collaborate with member firms around audit controls and standards placed on accounting firms.

Walthall, MarksNelson, WithumSmith+Brown Recognized For Community Service

Demonstrating an ongoing commitment to volunteerism is a driving force among the growing Association for Accounting Marketing’s (AAM) membership, a trend that shows no sign of slowing down.

To honor the firms that go above and beyond in their corporate philanthropic efforts, (AAM) presented the “We AAM to Serve” awards earlier this month.

“Our judges were blown away at the level of community involvement this year’s winners have shown,” says Rebecca Weiand, practice growth coordinator with Rea & Associates and co-chair of the We AAM to Serve awards committee. “Not only were we impressed with how many hours were donated to their community service initiatives, we were inspired by the various ways they were able to give back.”

We AAM to Serve recognizes winners in three categories: small firms (1-99 employees), medium firms (100-499 employees) and large firms (500+ employees). The winners of the 2016 We AAM to Serve Award dedicated a total of 8,550 community hours to helping hundreds of nonprofits – individually and as a firm – across five states. The 2016 winners were:

Walthall, Small firm category

Walthall’s Giving Back, Looking Forward is a firmwide program that encourages employees to volunteer. Employees receive eight hours a year to “give back” to the community to participate in activities such as preparing and serving dinners for the grief groups at the Cornerstone of Hope, work the Salvation Army Fresh Food Giveaway, or help sort food at the Greater Cleveland Food Bank.

MarksNelson, Medium firm category

On a cold weekday just before Christmas, a number of MarksNelson employees met at Washington Square Park in downtown Kansas City, Mo., which is regularly frequented by the area’s homeless. There, they wrapped 412 donated scarves, hats and gloves around trees and lampposts. Attached to each was a note placed by employee volunteers that read: “The spirit of the season has found you. We hope this item keeps you wrapped in warmth all winter long.”

WithumSmith+Brown, Large firm category

Following the devastation of Hurricane Sandy, the Staff Hardship Relief Fund was created to financially assist Withum staff and their families who were experiencing a temporary hardship. The firm holds the “Withum Week of Caring.” During the three days before Thanksgiving, all staff volunteer a minimum of four hours to a charity, in lieu of going into the office.

Winners were announced at the 2017 AAM Marketing Achievement Awards Gala June 14, as part of the organization’s annual summit in Las Vegas.

Marketing Achievement Awards Presented by AAM

Thirty awards for marketing accomplishment were awarded June 14 by the Association for Accounting Marketing at its annual award gala, which features awards in multiple categories: websites, branding, multimedia and maverick marketing.

Expert category judges, including professionals in marketing, advertising, communications and professional services, reviewed and judged 99 entries. Winning entries were recognized for the accomplishment of a specific goal or objective, executing a project strategically, and measurable results.

The categories and winners are as follows:

Advertising

  • Digital Advertising, Faw Casson
  • Paid Content Marketing & SEO Campaign, Anders CPAs + Advisors
  • Print Campaign: Total Spend of $24,999 of Less, Sol Schwartz & Associates PC
  • Print Campaign: Total Spend Above $25,000, Mazars USA LLP

Branding

  • Integrated Branding Programs: Budget Above $100,000, Postlethwaite & Netterville APAC
  • Integrated Branding Programs: Budget Below $100,000, Henry+Horne
  • Logo New or Refreshed, Lindquist LLP

Business Development Initiative

  • Customized Sales Initiative or Approach, Weinstein Spira

Collateral and Content Marketing

  • Announcements/Invitations, William Vaughan Company
  • Blogs, Henry+Horne
  • Brochures, Baker Tilly
  • Integrated PR Campaign, Collins Barrow Toronto
  • Publications and Newsletters, The Wolf Group

Events

  • Budget between $10,000 and $24,999, Henderson Hutcherson & McCullough
  • Budget less than $9,999, Rea & Associates Inc.
  • Budget about $25,000, Freed Maxick CPAs PC

Marketing and PR Campaigns

  • Client Service/Survey, Margolin Winer & Evens LLP
  • Direct Marketing Campaign, Rehmann
  • Integrated Marketing Campaign, Rehmann
  • Non-Technical Published and Featured Articles, Henry+Horne
  • Nurture/Lead Generation Campaign, EKS&H LLLP
  • Recruiting Campaign, Bergan KDV
  • Social Media Campaign, WithumSmith+Brown
  • Technical Published and Feature Articles, Baker Newman Noyes

Video and Multimedia

  • Program Budget above $10,000, WithumSmith+Brown
  • Program Budget below $9,999, Skoda Minotti

Website

  • Project Budget between $10,000 and $24,999, Henry+Horne
  • Project Budget above $25,000, Elliott Davis Decosimo
  • Project Budget below $9,999, BKD LLP

Members Choice

  • Website: Project Budget below $9,999, Whaley Hammonds Tomasello

AAM Announces Marketing Achievement Award Recipients

The Association for Accounting Marketing (AAM), the leading trade association focused exclusively on marketing and business development for the accounting profession, announced the recipients of its individual Marketing Achievement Awards (MAA) June 14 at its annual gala.

The event was held at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas during the organization’s 28th annual conference.

Jamie Thomas

Jamie Thomas

Jamie Thomas was inducted into the AAM Hall of Fame. Inductees must have 10 years or more of service and be known for their outstanding accomplishments as a leader of the association.

Thomas is a past president who helped AAM navigate through challenging times of transition and growth; served as a member and chair for various committees; spoken often at AAM conferences and has always said yes – many times before AAM even asked for help. Thomas happily shares experience with AAM members on many topics including how to get started at your firm, building firm culture, and so much more.

She is the first non-CPA to earn a partnership position with her firm The LBA Group of Jacksonville, Fla., which was acquired by Chicago-based BDO late last year.

Nicole Sterling was named Volunteer of the Year, which recognizes dedication to AAM, involvement on committees and/or special projects, as well as their professional accomplishments.

As chair of the website committee, Sterling, of RSW Accounting and Consulting of Montreal, Quebec, has given tirelessly to her role, whether it’s leading calls or working nights and weekends with other committees to ensure their sections of the website are working properly. From the new profile badges, to launching the marketer’s library, to building new sections and functionality, she’s constantly finding ways to maximize the ways to use AccountingMarketing.org, AAM Connect and the AAM Portal.

Jeshanah McLeod

Jeshanah McLeod

Jeshanah McLeod was honored as Rookie of the Year, which recognizes a marketer on the rise, who demonstrates distinction in the field. The Rookie of the Year shows creativity, initiative and ambition.

McLeod, of Lancaster, Pa.-based Brown Schultz Sheridan and Fitz, was hired as a marketing coordinator in September 2015. Her performance was deemed to be well above the expectations of the firm as she helped to revitalize her firm’s marketing efforts in her first year, which resulted in her title being changed to marketing director in February 2016. Educating the firm on the importance of marketing, this honoree presents initiatives in a way that helps the firm better understand how marketing initiatives benefit them.

Kucera Named AAM’s 2017 Marketer of the Year

Laura Kucera

Laura Kucera

Laura F. Kucera, chief marketing officer at New York-based Citrin Cooperman, has received the Association for Accounting Marketing’s (AAM) 2017 Marketer of the Year award, sponsored by INSIDE Public Accounting (IPA).

The winner was announced by IPA June 14 at AAM’s 2017 Summit in Las Vegas. The Marketer of the Year presentation was the highlight of the 23nd annual gala, which also honors winners of dozens of marketing achievement awards.

Kucera leads strategic marketing, communications and business development strategies for Citrin Cooperman, which is ranked among the top 25 largest firms in the country, according to IPA.

Citrin Cooperman CEO Joel Cooperman, who nominated Kucera for the award, praises her “marketing and business acumen, analytical mindset, motivational leadership skills and innate client-focused approach.” He says that her leadership has contributed to the firm’s significant growth of 17% in 2016, which included the joining of two firms and three new offices in New England, the development of four new consulting practice groups and the restructuring of the firm’s advisory services line.

Kucera led integration efforts for the newly joined firms, developed in-depth marketing and business development strategies for the New England market, formed a new international strategy group and launched a global go-to-market plan with Mark Fagan, MP of the firm’s Norwalk, Conn., office and board member of Moore Stephens N.A.

Kucera played an important role in pulling together a new technology and risk advisory consulting practice. She created a four-hour cross-selling class with Fagan and taught it to more than 100 staff. Finally, Kucera developed an in-house design team and launched a new visual identity for the firm.

“Citrin Cooperman’s brand awareness has grown tremendously under Laura,” says IPA Publisher Kelly Platt. “She’s a great communicator, mentor and morale-builder who has unified all professionals to do their part to grow the firm. She richly deserves this award.”

“I cannot think of a more deserving candidate for this recognition,” Fagan says. “Not only does Laura have a full-scale understanding of marketing principles, she has a deep understanding of the firm’s business goals and works relentlessly to implement strategies to achieve those goals.”

Alan Badey, MP of the Citrin Cooperman White Plains, N.Y., office, says Kucera “gets it.” Her knowledge of the profession, the marketplace and what differentiates the firm “has completely changed the look and feel of Citrin Cooperman both internally and externally,” he says. “She created our brand, ‘Focus on What Counts,’ which says everything about us and everything that our clients have come to expect from us.”

He adds, “Not only is she running our marketing and sales, she is involved with most significant initiatives in the firm – from mergers, to service line restructuring, to staff mentoring and infrastructure upgrades.”

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

BDO International Network Announces New CEO

Keith Farlinger

Keith Farlinger

Keith Farlinger, former CEO of BDO Canada and a member of the network’s Global Leadership Team in the role of CEO Americas, will succeed Martin van Roekel as CEO of the international BDO network.

Martin will step down as CEO Oct. 31, having been in the role for more than six years. During Martin’s time as global CEO, the BDO network has seen impressive growth and development, accomplishing global coverage.

“I am grateful to all BDO firms and their partners and staff for their great cooperation in the past years, supporting the ongoing changes and being very helpful and accommodating in the process of investing and building an even stronger and more successful BDO network – all the time maintaining our unique BDO culture,” says the outgoing CEO, who will continue with BDO in the capacity of vice chairman.

Farlinger was the CEO of BDO Canada for seven years and the Canadian member of the network’s global board from 2008 until 2015. Prior to that he was active for many years as an audit partner in BDO Canada. Immediately after completing his CEO term at BDO Canada, Keith joined BDO’s Global Leadership Team as CEO Americas. He remains heavily involved in the multiple audit innovation and IT developments within the BDO network.

“I intend to continue the same pace of development and level of activity that he has set in motion and trust that I can actively contribute to the further growth and success of the BDO network,” Farlinger says.

The global board’s agreement to appoint Farlinger as the new CEO of BDO International Limited was unanimous.

Lopez Levi Lowenstein Glinsky Joins AGN

AGN is pleased to welcome Coral Gables, Fla.-based Lopez Levi Lowenstein Glinsky (LLLG) as a member.

The firm operates a second office in Homestead, Fla., and concentrates in tax, estate planning, wealth preservation, real property, business valuation, tax controversy and commercial matters. The multi-lingual team works with clients throughout the world, but has particular concentrations in Central/South America and Asia.

The firm completed a merger in January and is growing rapidly. Its concierge-like services and dedication to education have helped LLLG to build an excellent reputation and market niche in international tax. In addition to their work in pre-immigration and high-net-worth tax planning and restructuring, they also specialize in construction and real estate in a variety of countries, AGN says.

“We truly anticipate contributing to the overall knowledge of AGN as an organization, as well as the mutual exchange we will have through growing relationships,” says founder and MP Ray Levi. “We feel that the impressive member profiles, training and exclusivity of AGN is a step above what we have experienced with past associations and are excited about the possibilities.”

“The world is not flat… and AGN is continually growing in international cooperation, business development and technical knowledge,” says Kathy Sautters, North American regional director. “Lopez Levi Lowenstein Glinsky is the perfect example of all three and will be a key player in bringing together our members from all regions.”