Lurie Acquires Hagen Palen & Co

Lurie LLP (FY17 net revenue of $28 million) of Minneapolis acquired Hagen Palen & Co., of Fort Myers, Fla.

“Over the past 78 years, we have been strategic about our firm’s growth and identifying opportunities that position us properly for the future,” says Beth Kieffer Leonard, Lurie MP. “This expansion of our geographic footprint allows us to continue to provide great service to our clients in this region along with the clients of Hagen Palen that they have served for years.”

“As a result of this combination, our combined practice will have access to a larger pool of technical skills in tax planning, accounting and auditing, as well as additional business management, financial and consulting services,” says Jim Hagen of Hagen Palen.

“We have a shared focus in delivering the highest level of personalized service and professionalism to our clients. With the addition of Lurie’s depth of service and expertise, we are now able to better serve our client’s growing needs and future growth opportunities,” says Howard Palen of Hagen Palen.

Briggs & Veselka Expands Risk Advisory Practice

Sonny Brandtner

Sonny Brandtner

Houston-based Briggs & Veselka (FY16 net revenue of $35.4 million) welcomed Sonny Brandtner as senior director in the risk advisory practice. Brandtner has more than 30 years’ experience in industry and in public accounting, providing internal audit, risk advisory and process improvement consulting experience in the energy, health care, restaurant and financial services industries.

“The firm’s market reputation is first rate among clients and referral sources, and it was a pleasant surprise over the course of our conversations with leadership to hear not only the size of the firm, but the scope of services that in my opinion, rival any regional firm,” says Brandtner.

“As the firm expands its value-added services to help our growing clients address and navigate through new and different risks, Sonny will be a valued resource in helping solve – or avoid – the issues oftentimes associated with growth,” says Sheila Enriquez, leader of the advisory practice.

“His presence will help expand our evolving internal audit, SOX, and routine accounting processes through use of robotic process automation. And Sonny’s deep experience in all four segments of the energy value chain will provide a valuable resource to our energy clients, as well as other OFS, upstream, midstream and downstream companies in the region.”

Barnes Dennig Names New Managing Director

Jay Rammes

Jay Rammes

Cincinnati-based Barnes Dennig & Co. (FY16 net revenue of $19.1 million) named Jay Rammes as managing director, effective Sept. 1.

Rammes succeeds his mentor and co-worker of 24 years, Steve Hube, who will continue as a director with the firm serving clients through June 30, 2019.

“In this business you need to be both knowledgeable and committed to care about your clients, and Steve has created an incredible legacy doing just that,” says Rammes.

Rammes has five years of service on the firm’s executive committee and more than 10 years of leadership of the firm’s human resource committee.

“Jay understands how forward-thinking CPA firms need to embrace a culture of innovation to challenge the status quo daily,” says Hube.

Dean Dorton Launches IGNITE Leadership Conference

Lexington, Ky.-based Dean Dorton Allen Ford (FY16 net revenue of $27.3 million) launched IGNITE Leadership Conference, a two-day program for accounting students.

IGNITE will be held on July 19-20 in Lexington. Accounting students will have the opportunity to gain hands-on experience through a case study simulation, learn CPA exam tips and tricks, meet Dean Dorton team members, and learn the firm’s services and industry expertise.

“There’s so much to learn as students begin to plan for their careers and set a course for success,” says David Bundy, president and CEO. “At IGNITE, students will gain knowledge and leadership skills from hands-on activities, get to know some of the best and brightest young professionals in the accounting industry, hear from leaders in the field, and walk away with a deeper understanding of how they can become true business advisors and forge their unique individual career path.”

Eligibility requirements include a minimum 3.0 GPA, an interest in a public accounting career, and involvement with on-campus activities and community service organizations.

Accounting students can learn more and apply here. Applications close on April 27.

Lane Gorman Trubitt Admits New Principal

Lucas LaChance

Lucas LaChance

Lane Gorman Trubitt (FY16 net revenue of $20.1 million) of Dallas admitted Lucas LaChance to principal. LaChance, who has been a leader at LDT for more than a decade, heads the practice growth department.

LaChance joined in 2007 as a staff in the assurance services department and specializes in the nonprofit and construction industries for several years on the accounting side before transitioning into a more business development focused role.

“Lucas brings a wealth of talent across the industries critical to our firm’s long-term success. Inviting a new principal into the firm represents a significant investment of time and trust between all of the firm leaders,” says MP Lee Ann Collins.

REDW’s Allen Elected Board Chair of Arizona Society of CPAs

Mike Allen

Mike Allen

Mike Allen, principal at Albuquerque, N.M.-based REDW LLC (FY16 net revenue of $27.5 million), has been elected board chair of the Arizona Society of CPAs for the 2018-2019 term, effective May 1.

Allen currently holds the title of chair-elect and previously served as the board’s secretary and treasurer, as well as on the association’s nominating committee, executive committee, investment committee and foundation board.

Allen’s stated vision for the coming year is “to build on the great work of previous ASCPA chairs in advancing the cause of all CPAs in Arizona, and to enhance the success of our members through education, advocacy and increasing the value of the CPA.”

Allen heads REDW’s audit and assurance department. He has experience with strategic planning, organizational development, and financial and operations management, working to promote his clients’ success through the direction expansion of their core business activities and products, as well as the proactive management of their operations and relationships.

Prior to joining REDW in 2011, Allen spent 15 years as the COO, CFO and member of RAM Holdings. In the 1980s and 1990s, Allen was a partner and director of Erickson Allen, a public accounting firm that he helped grow from a start-up operation to a multi-million-dollar business.

Anders Welcomes Rhea as Director of Advisory Services

Paul Rhea

Paul Rhea

St. Louis-based Anders CPAs + Advisors (FY16 net revenue of $30 million) welcomes Paul Rhea as director of advisory services.

Rhea has 33 years of experience in the banking and finance industry, specifically working with private wealth management, commercial and industrial banking, commercial real estate, and investment management. At Anders, Rhea’s experience offers a focused view of the overall financial picture for clients. In his advisory role, he will provide strategy for growing industry groups and identify new opportunities for clients of the firm. Rhea’s expertise in overall asset management, credit assessments and reviews will be beneficial to uncovering needs and financial opportunities for businesses served by Anders. Rhea will also work with Anders affiliate company, Claris Advisors.

White Nelson Diehl Evans Admits Six New Partners

Irvine, Calif.-based White Nelson Diehl Evans (FY16 net revenue of $23 million) admitted six new partners: Jill Cohen, Michael Glaab, Erin Johnson, Jennifer Pugh, Kassie Radermacher and Christina Wenk.

Cohen is an audit and assurance partner who first came to WNDE as an intern in 1993. She has spent most of her career with WNDE, but also spent two years as a controller in private industry. She provides financial reporting and consulting services for privately-held companies in a variety of industries including manufacturing and distribution, restaurant and retail industries, construction, investment trusts, medical groups and non-profit organizations.

Glaab is an audit and assurance partner who began his career with WNDE in 2004. He serves clients in a wide variety of industries including employee benefit plans, state and local governments, retail, distribution, health care and financial services.

Johnson is a tax and advisory services partner who began her career at Deloitte before coming to WNDE in 2010. She manages client engagements, assists the firm with staff training and development, and provides clients with specific guidance on ways they can reduce their tax expenses.

Pugh is an audit and assurance partner who has spent her entire career with WNDE. She began as an intern with the firm in 1996. She provides financial reporting and consulting services to privately-held mid-size for-profit companies, employee benefit plans, non-profit organizations and governmental entities. She specializes in the areas of manufacturing, distribution, professional services, construction and health care. She is also the PIC of monitoring the firm’s quality control system.

Radermacher is an audit and assurance partner who has been with the firm since 2009. She has performed all phases of local governmental audits including cities, successor agencies and redevelopment agencies, single audit of federal grants, special districts, compliance audits and agreed-upon procedures engagements.

Wenk is a tax and advisory services partner who joined WNDE in 2007. She manages a client base consisting primarily of partnerships, limited liability companies, s-corporations, trusts and high-net-worth individuals. Her responsibilities include tax planning, managing work flow, preparing and reviewing income tax returns and assisting clients in all manners requested.

Adams Brown Beran & Ball Welcomes New Principal

Jessica Dennis

Jessica Dennis

Great Bend, Kan.-based Adams Brown Beran & Ball (FY16 net revenue of $18.2 million) welcomed Jessica Dennis as a firm principal.

Dennis joined ABBB in 2004 and works in the tax department, providing tax and accounting services to clients in a variety of industries. Dennis also chairs the firm’s tax advisory board and co-leads the firm’s tax service line.

“Congratulations to Jessica on this significant achievement,” says Brian Staats, MP.  “We look forward to our future success as a result of her leadership, determination, and technical expertise.”

Calibre One Admits New Partner and Strengthens Financial Services Capabilities

Calibre One, an executive search firm and an affiliate of Bethesda, Md.-based Calibre CPA Group (FY16 net revenue of $23 million), admitted David Schumer as a partner in its New York office. Schumer will further strengthen Calibre One’s global financial technology practice and lead the company’s broader expansion into serving financial services clients, including investment management and insurance.

“Calibre One is continually looking to expand into new industries that are undergoing digital transformation,” says Dan Grosh, MP in San Francisco. “One such area is the financial services sector where investment management firms are facing increased competition, fee pressures, shifting client preferences and ever-changing regulation. Of all of the changes confronting investment managers, artificial intelligence, robotics and distributed ledger technologies hold the most potential to transform the industry. With the addition of David, we have substantially strengthened our technical expertise and access to senior executives in financial services to bring clients the global talent they need to thrive in the era of technological and regulatory change.”

Schumer has more than a decade of investment management experience. Most recently, he served as principal for an executive search boutique and strategic advisor specializing in talent management for the asset and wealth management industry. Prior to that, he was a consultant at David Barrett Partners. Schumer also previously served as an equity investor at Tribe Capital Management and at HBK Investments. He started his career as an investment banker at Lehman Brothers.