KROST Announces Merger with BPE&H

Pasadena, Calif.-based KROST (FY18 net revenue of $33.8 million) has merged in BPE&H of Woodland Hills, Calif.

Seven principals will join the leadership team at KROST, including Scott Eisner, Martin Belak-Berger, Bob Price, Phil D’Amico, Scott Gilmore and founding BPE&H principals Jerry Block and Jane Plant. The merger adds 30 employees, expanding KROST to 200 team members and increasing its presence in the thriving Woodland Hills area.

The former BPE&H staff will remain at their existing office until next summer when staff from the two offices – KROST also operates an office in Woodland Hills – will move into a new space together.

“Joining with KROST makes sense from a resource standpoint. We now have in-house recruiting and other corporate support systems to alleviate workload on our leadership so we can spend more time with our clients. The firm’s industry task forces are also a great complement to our manufacturing and real estate expertise,” says Belak-Berger.

KROST MP Greg Kniss says, “Merging with BPE&H made sense for us on several levels. Their mission and vision, as well as dedication to superior customer service, resonates with our core values and the principles that we stand by here at KROST. Our tax, accounting and advisory teams will benefit from the added resources; all of which will allow us to continue to support our clients.”

More news from KROST

Moore North America Launches U.S. National Tax Office

The accounting firm association, Moore North America (Moore NA), has collaborated with member firms to launch a U.S. national tax office.

The office will provide members and their clients with access to deeper tax knowledge across multiple tax specialty areas. It is comprised of tax partners and senior-level staff that will work collaboratively with Moore member firms and shared clients.

“In today’s environment, where our clients are facing change faster than ever before, we want to collaborate with Moore member firms to provide responsive, in-depth expertise that differentiates us,” says Moore Global CEO Anton Colella.

San Ramon-based Armanino LLP (FY18 net revenue of $267.2 million) was the driving force behind this initiative, Moore NA announced. St. Louis-based Brown Smith Wallace (FY18 net revenue of $50 million) and Maple Grove, Minn.-based Global Tax Network US (FY18 net revenue of $15.4 million) have provided tax professionals in property tax and expat tax services, respectively, to assist members. The office expects to grow in resources and incorporate more members as the program continues.

“Since Moore members already collaborate on a regular basis, the office is meant to supplement those efforts,” says Moore NA CEO Tony Szczepaniak. “We hope the addition of these resources can help our members continue to grow and thrive alongside their clients.”

In addition to collaboration, the office seeks to increase communication and education among members. Through tax alerts, events and webinars, the office provides members with the increased confidence that no matter what issues or questions clients are facing, they have the answers and resources readily available.

The regular communications will provide expanded insights into emerging legislation, including strategic tax opportunities across state, national and international jurisdictions and the impact of new tax pronouncements.

Moore NA is one of eight regional members of Moore Global Network Limited.

More news from Moore NA

IPA Launches 2020 Survey Focused on Employee Transformation and Development


“Transforming while performing” is the mantra of many firms today, ensuring current performance while re-tooling and re-engineering the firm for the future. “Transformation” refers to many areas of business, including employees, technology, business model, business processes, partner activities, governance, pricing models, new performance metrics and even definitions of success. This month, we begin capturing information on employee transformation.

Throughout the year, INSIDE Public Accounting (IPA) will be collecting and reporting on information on the theme of Firm Transformations. This month’s focus is on employee transformation and development. Please consider taking the survey, which should take no more than 5 minutes to complete.

All survey participants will receive a complimentary copy of the results when published. The survey is open from Jan. 23 through Feb. 21.



Yount Hyde and Barbour Expands Construction Practice with Merger

Winchester, Va.-based Yount Hyde & Barbour (FY18 net revenue of $24.9 million) has merged in Woodcock & Associates of Fredericksburg, Va.

Scott Moulden, MP of Yount Hyde & Barbour (YHB), says in a statement that Woodcock & Associates has been an invaluable resource to its construction industry clients since its founding in 2000. “We expect the Woodcock team’s capabilities to enhance our already rapidly expanding construction industry niche.”

Woodcock provides a comprehensive range of assurance, outsourced CFO services and management advisory services.

“Both YHB and Woodcock have had a friendly relationship for many years. We knew the quality of work and relational approach they took to delivering client service,” says MP and president Jeanette Woodcock. “In addition, YHB has a large multi-regional presence with offices spread throughout, allowing us access to new markets. This provides our team with additional resources and specializations, which we see as a huge combined strength from the merger.”

The merger will make the Fredericksburg office YHB’s eighth location in Virginia. The deal will add 12 professional staff to YHB.

More news from Yount Hyde & Barbour

UHY Expands in Northeast With Acquisition of Pattison Koskey Howe and Bucci

Chicago-based UHY LLP and UHY Advisors Inc. (FY17 net revenue of $140.8 million) has announced they will expand their presence in the Northeast region with the merger of Pattison Koskey Howe and Bucci (PKHB), which operated six offices in the Hudson Valley area of New York.

The deal adds three partners, six principals and approximately 50 additional professionals and administrative staff to UHY.

The merger developed over several years through the firms’ collaboration serving their respective clients. Their combined expertise will create new business opportunities in the Hudson Valley with the addition of three of the PKHB offices in Hudson, Kingston and Catskill.

A. Michael Bucci, Matthew VanDerbeck and Bradley Cummings will join UHY as partners. One of PKHB’s founders, Richard Koskey, joins UHY as a principal, along with Nancy Patzwahl, Suzanne Muldoon, Gary Newkirk, Therese Wolfe and Jean Howe Lossi.

“We are committed to ensuring a smooth transition and look forward to our combined experience strengthening our presence and further helping us counsel our clients as we continue to expand our service lines, industry sectors and advisory services to meet growing client business strategies and demands across the Northeast,” says Michael Mahoney, CEO of UHY Advisors NY, Inc.

“UHY’s commitment to client success, community support, career development, deep industry expertise and professional leadership in the accounting and advisory sectors are a foundation of our collective continuing legacies,” Bucci says.

More news from UHY

The 2020 IPA Accounting Firm National Benchmarking Surveys are Open for Participation

The 2020 INSIDE Public Accounting (IPA) Annual Survey and Analysis of Firms is now open to all accounting firms in North America. The results of the annual survey are compiled in the IPA National Benchmarking Report. The data is also used to rank the IPA 100, 200, 300 and 400 firms, and the coveted IPA Best of the Best firms. If you would like to participate, please contact our office.

More than 550 accounting firms, ranging in size from $1 million to more than $1 billion in net revenue, participated in IPA’s 2019 Annual Survey and Analysis of Firms. All firms in the U.S. and Canada are encouraged to take part in one of the longest-running benchmarking surveys on accounting firm management.

Firms who would like to participate – at no cost – can contact IPA for details. Participating firms will receive an executive summary of the IPA National Benchmarking Report and will be eligible to be named a 2020 Best of the Best firm or an IPA Top 400 firm.


…May 2019 through December 2019: May 4, 2020

…January 2020 through March 2020: May 29, 2020

…April 2020: June 15, 2020

Note: IPA will not accept any submission after June 30, 2020.


In conjunction with the National Benchmarking survey, IPA has launched the Firm Administration, Human Resources and Information Technology surveys. These surveys dig deeper into the operations and best practices of participating accounting firms across the U.S.

Your firm must complete the IPA Benchmarking Survey and Analysis form in order to participate in any of the internal operational surveys (Firm Administration, Human Resources and Information Technology). If you would like to participate, contact our office.


If you fully participate in the survey, your firm will be included in one of the largest annual management of an accounting practice (MAP) survey in the country. You will:

  • Become eligible to be ranked among this year’s top firms in the IPA 100, IPA 200, IPA 300 and IPA 400.
  • Become eligible to be named an IPA Best of the Best firm.
  • Receive a complimentary copy of IPA’s August 2020 newsletter, which highlights the annual IPA 400 firm rankings, along with a detailed financial and operational analysis of the IPA 100 firms.
  • Receive complimentary imagery and press releases if your firm is named an IPA 400, a Best of the Best firm or a Fastest-Growing firm.
  • Receive an electronic complimentary copy of the 2020 Executive Summary of the IPA National Benchmarking Report. If you participate in any or all of the internal operational surveys, you will also receive a complimentary executive summary when published in the fall.
  • Receive preferred pricing on accolade reprints for marketing purposes.
  • Receive preferred pricing on the 2020 IPA National Benchmarking Report, the internal operational reports and other benchmarking tools.
  • Be given preference as a source for articles written by IPA throughout the year – an excellent opportunity to market your firm.
  • Gain a competitive advantage and grow your firm with industry insight from the independent benchmarking leader in the nation.


All confidential firm data, including salaries, compensation, income, etc., will be held in strict confidence and will NOT be shared or publicized in any of the final reporting. We take extreme pride in our ability to collect this data to assist the profession and are now celebrating nearly three decades of surveying accounting firms across the globe.

Please contact IPA at with any concerns or questions. IPA conducts a thorough review of each survey submission for omissions or errors and will reach out to the contact person named on the submitted survey form for any clarifications / updates. Some data, such as firm name, MP(s) name, firm net revenue and organic growth may appear in the IPA newsletter (if accolades are given).

KPMG UK’s Most Senior Female Partner Quits

Melanie Richards

After 20 years at Big 4 firm KPMG, UK deputy chair Melanie Richards will leave in September following a difficult two years during which the firm worked to recover from a series of audit and conduct scandals, the Financial Times reported.

The London newspaper cited an anonymous source to report that Richards told UK Chair Bill Michael last September that she wants to serve as a non-executive director at a number of companies. UK rules and KPMG policy require a departing auditor to wait two years before joining the board of any listed company that their firm audits.

“Melanie is relentless in her campaigning for equality in the workplace and is an inspirational leader, both within our firm and across UK business as a whole,” Michael says in a statement. “Wherever she chooses to go next, they will be lucky to have her broad array of skills, experience, energy and counsel — which have been invaluable to me as chairman.”

Richards, who joined the firm in 2000, leads KPMG’s efforts to improve its diversity and inclusion and ran its senior women’s network, but she has been criticized for failing to close its gender pay gap of 28% last year.

KPMG has faced a series of setbacks in the last two years over the quality of its audits in the wake of the collapse of UK outsourcing firm Carillion.

More news from KPMG

Mauldin & Jenkins Partner Named GASB Chair

Joel Black

Joel Black, PIC of the audit practice at Atlanta-based Mauldin & Jenkins (FY19 net revenue of $52.5 million), has been named the chair of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB).

He will succeed David Vaudt on July 1, when Black’s seven-year, nonrenewable appointment takes effect. He will join GASB in a few months to facilitate a smooth transition.

Black has worked at Mauldin & Jenkins since 2004. Prior to that, he was an employee at KPMG for 12 years.

He oversees the audit practice of the firm’s eight offices throughout five states and also leads the firm’s government professional practice group, covering more than 400 public sector clients.

“He brings extensive knowledge and experience to the role and has genuine appreciation for the opportunities and challenges that our stakeholders face as accounting standards change,” says Kathleen Casey, Financial Accounting Foundation chair. The Financial Accounting Foundation oversees GASB and the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB).

“I have been immersed my entire adult life in the important, complex world of governmental accounting,” Black says. “I am eager to join my new colleagues in the mission to establish and improve accounting standards and to engage with the remarkably diverse group of stakeholders who care so much about public sector financial reporting.”

More news from Mauldin & Jenkins

Vrakas CPAs + Advisors Appoints New Managing Shareholder

Bradley J. Weckwerth

Bradley J. Weckwerth

Brookfield, Wis.-based Vrakas CPAs + Advisors announces that Bradley J. Weckwerth will be the firm’s next president and managing shareholder.

“It’s with great enthusiasm that we begin this transition. Brad has the full support of our shareholder group and is more than ready to take on this leadership role,” states James Holmes, the firm’s president and managing shareholder since 2006.

Beckwerth says he is humbled to be selected as Holmes’ successor. “The relationships I’ve built throughout my time here are truly special. This announcement is part of the firm’s long-term strategic plan, which keeps us on a path to remain as one of southeastern Wisconsin’s largest locally owned public accounting firms. We are fiercely independent and feel our unique culture and service philosophies set us apart in the marketplace.”

Holmes and Beckwerth will work as co-managing shareholders through June 2020 to ensure a seamless transition. Going forward, Holmes will remain as one of the firm’s full-time tax shareholders.

Vrakas, with over 70 professionals, focuses on privately held, for-profit companies, including private equity and ESOP-owned companies, in southeastern Wisconsin and surrounding areas across a variety of industries including manufacturing/distribution, construction, dealerships, real estate, service and retail.

Abbott Stringham & Lynch Announces New MP, Carol Wagner

Carol Wagner

Carol Wagner

Abbott Stringham & Lynch of San Jose, Calif., announces that Carol Wagner took on the managing partner role on Jan. 1.

She succeeds Ray Scheaffer, who served in the role for 15 years. Wagner is ASL’s sixth MP since the firm’s inception in 1977, and the second woman to serve in the role.

Scheaffer will continue at the firm as a tax principal. He says of Wagner, “Her strategic thinking and exceptional leadership will guide the firm’s growth, shape the culture and continue to provide our clients with unparalleled service.”

Wagner has over 20 years of audit and accounting experience and serves privately held companies in various industries including software, manufacturing and construction companies with domestic and international operations. She most recently served as the firm’s CFO, and previously was the PIC of the audit and accounting group.

Founded in 1977, ASL is a firm of 90 employees including 14 principals, of whom six are women. ASL works with privately held businesses and high-net-worth individuals.