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News from Your Accounting Association

CPAmerica Advantage Improving Through Merging: CPAmerica Member Firm Merges With CPAConnect Firm In Aug ust, t he A d v a n t a g e newsletter covered an article on a CPAConnect firm making the jump to CPAmerica. Now, in an example of the benefits of firm sponsorship, we feature how a CPAmerica sponsor firm, , has merged with the CPAConnect firm, , which will assume the DMJ name.

Mike Gillis

For DMJ, the merger provided their firm an opportunity to grow and expand with a firm with whom they have a long track record with. The pre-established symbiosis between the firms made this a good deal for both sides.

Mike Gillis, DMJ’s managing partner, said of the merger, “We recognize the importance of strategic growth that anticipates our clients’ needs, oftentimes from formation to succession and through very personal milestones. We are excited to expand to the Coastal Cape Fear region and continue the legacy and

November 2019 Technology Overview P. 2

commitment of the Miller & Company team.”

Member News P. 3 From Member Services - D'Yãn Davis P. 4

The expansion now means a DMJ presence in southeastern North Carolina and the firm’s fourth office location in the state. DMJ also has offices in Greensboro, Durham, and Sanford, N.C. The DMJ Durham office was established in 2016 and the DMJ Sanford Conference office was opened in 1990. Founded in Planning Calls: 1949, the firm is currently celebrating its 70th anniversary. In 2019, DMJ was again recognized as a Top 300 firm by INSIDE Public Accounting. We then asked Greg Miller, Miller & Co.’s managing shareholder, how important it was to have DMJ as a sponsor firm in making the transition and merging with them. He said, “We've known the people at DMJ for many years. The leading tax partner (Milton Howell) and I worked together back in early 90s. Back in 1998 ,Milton sent us the information to consider joining CPAConnect. When we joined CPAConnect, DMJ was our sponsoring

We encourage members to participate in the planning calls for our various conferences and meetings throughout the year. CPAmerica values the input of our members and relies heavily on member feedback to help shape the agendas for our events. We thank you in advance for your participation. All CPAmerica planning calls are listed on our website here: https://

See Merger, continued on page 2

New Member Snapshot: Holmes & Turner, PC Holmes & Turner, PC 1283 N. 14th Avenue, Suite 201 Bozeman, Montana 59715 Tel: (406) 587-4265 | Fax: (406) 586-3111


Bozeman, Montana

Bill Hebron | Managing Shareholder | Duane Moulton | Shareholder | Laura Turner | Shareholder | Laura Thomas | Shareholder |

Holmes & Turner's goal is to provide the highest level of service to their existing and future clients. The firm defines this as providing quality, innovative, creative and diverse accounting and financial services. Holmes & Turner views themselves as a local accounting firm that provides a large range of services. They are partners with their clients and their community. Holmes & Turner can help their clients wherever life takes them; whether they are next door or next to an ocean, the firm is there for them during their financial journey.

Matt Cope | Shareholder | Duane Moulton | Firm Administrator | Duane Moulton | HR Director |

Holmes & Turner’s services include: Audit & Attest, Litigation, Tax, Payroll, Estate Planning, Bookkeeping, Valuation, and Technology.

Technology Overview with Randy Johnston:

Protect Your Firm by Being Proactive on Artificial Intelligence This is Part 2 of 2 of Randy Johnston's (from NMGI) Technology Overview , continued from the October issue of the Advantage newsletter

automation with document management, expense management, and accounts payable management tools like Doc.It, Concur and Altec DocLink. While some of these products have been around for nearly 10 years, their capabilities were originally built with manual forms and computing power, not with AI and other advanced techniques. New generation tools like Receipt Bank Extract, Zoho Expense and Bill. com are leveraging emerging technology to improve their capabilities and recognition rates. Consider what happens if we can ingest a large amount of data for a tax return or an audit (or perhaps even all transactions) to look for irregularities. What happens if all, or at least most, business transactions can be accurately capas more data is processed, and the rules in the algorithms have been improved. Mainstream and startup vendors are beginning to sell these capabilities. Imagine what will happen if we can apply blockchain techniques to ensure that all recorded transactions are immutable and can’t be changed. We are seeing this type of product with tools like Auditchain, which is also leveraging XBRL digital business reporting. What are some potential tools to use today?

Multiple publishers are marketing products today, claiming they have these problems solved. While their techniques are beginning to work, don’t expect perfect results. Examples of products that are working for audit include Wolters Kluwer Audit Accelerator and TeamMate Analytics; MindBridge is making progress on ingesting and classifying a large amount of data, and new audit tools are being promoted by the competitors of AuditFile, MyWorkPapers and the AICPA’s OnPoint PCR and Dynamic Audit Solution. And we are not done yet

What can you do now? Recognize that if you keep your techplug into your technology infrastructure. Consider services future. Create an innovation lab—or sandbox—that can be used for testing new applications and techniques. Listen to your clients’ needs carefully while you are trying to asseming fees or prices. Over time, poor competitors are likely to compete on price, but initially you should compete on value. application(s) to provide a higher level of service, perform more business development, reduce the workload of your team, or allocate the time to other worthwhile projects in


Expect that some of the applications will not work out as you expect and act quickly to set these options aside. You may want to hold your work for deployment later, once the qualhave marketing documentation and procedures to support really what they advertise. Ask questions such as, “Do they while using them?” If the answers are yes, you can innovate with the cuttingedge products today and be ready for the emerging technologies of tomorrow. Merger, continued from front page

firm. Over the course of time, Milton and DMJ provided us with various resources. We have reached out to DMJ at times when we needed some outside advice. We've also used them for audits of our clients that had 401K plans and to consult on A&A issues. Miller went on to describe how the merger came about: “We would stay in touch during the years and then, as the three of us partners got together annually, we started thinking about things such as succession planning. We had several options; one of those was potentially reaching out to DMJ. In fact, about a year ago, Milton was here in Wilmington, and he said, ‘You Greg Miller know, if you ever consider [merging], give us a call.’ And so, after tax season, we noted that the timing was right. We reached out to them and asked them if they were interested in coming to this market. Greensboro is about three and a half hours away. It's not as if it's very close. We then sent DMJ some data and it progressed from there.” He then spoke about how the transition has been for their staff and partners. Miller said, “For about a month or two, we had to keep it very quiet. The first discussion happened in early May and we talked back and forth. They made a site visit at the end of June under the pretense of having DMJ’s managing partner checking in here, as they are our CPAConnect sponsor. We met in Wilmington and then we subsequently went to their Greensboro offices and met again. It wasn't until about three or four weeks ago that we were to the point where we could disclose this with staff. Everything up till then had to be done quietly, which was quite difficult because DMJ had a whole team of people that were doing different pieces of the merger; however, on our end, this work fell on me. Also, we had to do it around both the September 15 and October 15 deadlines.” “DMJ said that if the merger proceeded, they wanted it to happen effective November 1, so we had to get a lot of things in place fairly quickly. We then met with them on July 31. The last two and a half months have been very hectic pulling this off.” This is Part 1 of 2 of the DMJ Merger article, to be continued in the next issue of the Advantage newsletter

Member News

New managing partner named at MMA & Co.

Ron Austin, CPA, was elected to fill the role of managing partner at , as Mike Moyski, CPA, prepares for his retirement in December. Austin began his accounting career at Arthur Andersen & Co. in Chicago. He then owned an accounting practice in Glen Ellyn and joined MMA & Co. as a manager in 1996. In 1999, he was made a partner. Austin specializes in tax strategies for businesses, trusts and individuals, with expertise in multi-state taxation. Austin has served on the board and as treasurer of the Wheaton Chamber of Commerce and he led the Ambassadors Club as chairman. He is a board member and past president and former treasurer of CASA of DuPage, and he served on the board of the Friends of the Forest Preserve District of DuPage County. Austin is an active member and past president of the Lions Club of Wheaton. In 2015, he was honored by the Wheaton Chamber with the Brinkman Community Leadership Award. A graduate of Augustana College, Austin received his bachelor's in accounting and a master's in taxation from Northern Illinois University. He is a licensed CPA in Illinois and a member of the Illinois CPA Society as well as the AICPA.

Lombardi and Commisso named shareholders at member firm TBC

Tina Lombardi, CPA, and Vincent J. Commisso, CPA, have recently been named as shareholders for . Lombardi joined the TBC team in 1991 while Commisso joined in 2007. Both Lombardi and Commisso graduated from Siena College with a bachelor's in business administration. Lombardi also finds herself being the chair of the firm’s internal Professional Standards Group (Accounting & Auditing) and she oversees the Automobile Niche Group. Lombardi finds herself managing advisory services for the restaurant industry as well as overseeing all accounting aspects of her family’s businesses. Commisso is actively involved with the TBC Professional Standards Group that assists with firm engagement quality control as well as the Internal Manufacturing and Government Committees.

CS&L CPAs announces promotions CS&L CPAs, a certified public accounting firm headquartered in Bradenton, Fla., recently announced the following staff promotions within the firm: Regina Klein has been promoted to audit manager;

Ryan Parrish has been promoted to audit supervisor; and Stephanie Giorgi has had a title change from client services coordinator to accounting specialist.

WP+D named Prichard and Dozbaba as partners

Arizona-based member firm Wallace, Plese + Dreher, L.L.P. (WP+D), recently named two new partners. Leslie Prichard, CPA, has over 15 years of public accounting experience and manages many of the firm’s most complex audit engagements. Leading the firm’s employee benefit plan audits, she specializes in defined contribution plans, defined benefit plans, and ESOPs. Using her technical skills and knowledge, Prichard assists third party administrators with plan mergers and terminations and employee benefit plans that have filed with the voluntary compliance program due to administrative errors. She earned her bachelor's in business and master's of accountancy from Wright State University. Allison Lynn Dozbaba, CPA, has close to 15 years of combined industry and public accounting experience. She provides comprehensive tax planning and consulting to corporations, nonprofits, partnerships, and LLCs. Specializing in corporate taxation and deferred income tax provisions, she assists clients with U.S. reporting of their global activities, transfer pricing, and tax planning. Dozbaba manages preparation of IRS Form 990s and compiles financial data for taxexempt organizations, including charities and private foundations. She earned her bachelor's in accounting from Northern Arizona University.

Frazier & Deeter recognized as a Best Accounting Firm for Women in Leadership

, a nationally ranked public accounting and advisory firm, was named one of the 2019 Accounting MOVE Project Best CPA Firms for Equity Leadership. Frazier & Deeter received this honor for the fifth time since 2014. Frazier & Deeter is the only accounting firm based in the Southeast to be included on this list five times. The 2019 Accounting MOVE Project measures and supports the advancement of women in accounting and consulting firms. The MOVE report outlines tactics that women, advocates for women, and firm leaders can take to ensure that women CPAs can achieve their aspirations for their careers and drive firm growth in the process. The Accounting MOVE Project Best CPA Firms for Equity Leadership list recognizes firms with a percentage of women partners and principals that is well above the industry average.

VonLehman hires expert to lead Financial Institutions Group

Fort Wright, Ky.-based , announced that Larry Brown has joined the firm as an audit senior manager. Brown brings 15 years of public accounting experience, having built his career with a specialization in the financial services industry. Brown will leverage his regional network and specialized expertise to lead VonLehman’s Financial Institutions Group.

Thompson Greenspon names Coyner and Wilson as principals of the firm

Headquatered in Fairfax, Va., , announced that Gray Coyner, CPA, and Timothy Wilson, CPA, MT, have been named principals of the firm. Since joining the firm in 2007, Coyner has had a significant impact on client service, team leadership, and overall growth of the firm. Thompson Greenspon has always sought to recognize the dedication of its team members and promote from within. Coyner’s expertise includes providing accounting, auditing, and tax services to clients in various industries. He earned his bachelor's in business administration – accounting from Union University in 2008. He was awarded the Accounting Medal for having the highest Accounting GPA, and upon graduation he received the Curtiss E. Scott Business Excellence Award for his combined high GPA and service to the community. Wilson has been with Thompson Greenspon since 2011 and has a proven track record of leadership and dedicated client service. He has over 10 years of public accounting experience providing tax compliance and planning services to partnerships, C and S Corporations, and sole proprietors, including significant experience with mergers and acquisitions. Wilson holds a bachelor's in accounting from Rowan University and a master's of taxation from Villanova University.

Tallahassee, Fla.-based THF welcomes Twogood to the Tax Services Department Headquartered in Tallahassee, Fla.,

(THF), welcomed Kayla Twogood as a senior to their Tax Services Department. Twogood received her bachelor’s in business administration with a concentration in accounting and her master’s in accounting with a specialization in taxation from Colorado State University. She is a licensed CPA by the state of Colorado and is a member of the AICPA and the Colorado Institute of Certified Public Accountants.


From Member Services: How Deep is Your Bench? On November 12, 1990, Monday Night Football’s infamous “Body Bag Game” was played between the Philadelphia Eagles and Washington

D'Yãn Davis Director of Member Services

were an experienced, yet aging team and had already lost two quarterbacks to injuries

For more information regarding CPAmerica webinars, contact Colleen Gaddy at or visit the CPAmerica website and go to CPE & Training/Webinars. For more information regarding additional training opportunities, contact Jenn Walker at or visit the CPAmerica website and go to CPE &

quarterback, Stan Humphries, would be among the nine players sidelined with

• Communication: communication is imperative to any successful relationship. When the members of your team understand their responsibilities and expectations, their goals and ambitions can be more easily achieved. In order to better communicate with your team and gain greater insight into the perspective of your employees, CPAmerica’s customizable and anonymous Employee

injured players was so high that it prompted an Eagles player to ask if the Redskins “need

avenue to share their experiences and thoughts about the environment and

already wearing thin. Even given these factors, there was no reason for Coach Joe Gibbs to anticipate on this night that his starting quarterback,

For more information regarding CPAmerica’s Employee Engagement Survey, contact Colleen Gaddy at cgaddy@ visit the CPAmerica website When managing bench strength in your and go to Services/Surveys. • Professional Development: playing against competitors and outside Investing in the professional and personal development of your future leaders and threaten the long-term retention of your cultivates loyalty and enhances the overall desperation as he sent rookie running back Brian Mitchell in to lead the Redskins

career development program called the RISE Inclusion Initiative which is focused on building bench strength for your include: A strong coaching/mentorship expectations; equal access to leadership; and consistent documentation of participant progress. For more information regarding the RISE Inclusion Initiative, contact D’Yan Davis at or visit the CPAmerica website and go to Services/RISE Inclusion Initiative. via proven coaching and development techniques will ensure that wins are just around the corner, as proven by the future And as for rookie running back Brian Mitchell, well, he was coached on to greater success and became one of the greatest return specialists in NFL history.

lose nine key players in one busy season, most would agree that there are fewer leadership and other essential positions. loyalty and engagement has driven the development of a number of CPAmerica resources and programs designed to assist techniques for attracting and retaining quality team members include: • Training: Continuing education is available through CPAmerica webinars and live events as well as strategic relationships with preferred providers. ACPEN and online so that your employees can access the credits and education that they need and place that best suits their individual availability.

them to the CPAmerica Next Generation Conference. through managers who will be immersed in relationship building, leadership principles and practice management basics with other professionals at their level along with partners and presenters committed to developing “career coachable” employees For more information regarding the Next Generation Conference, contact Jenn Walker at or visit the CPAmerica website and go to Events/ Conferences and Meetings. • Coaching & Mentorship: RISE (RecruitInvolve-Sustain-Elevate) - CPAmerica

Contact us at: 7555 W. University Ave. Gainesville, FL 32607 (352) 727-4070

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News from Your Accounting Association


CPAmerica Advantage Aloha From Hawaii - Kapolei Marked the Site of the 2019 Leading Partners Retreat The rich tropical setting of Kapolei, Hawaii, located on the island of O’ahu was the site for the 2019 CPAmerica Leading Partners Retreat (LPR) this September. Trends in the accounting industry and leading change were themes at the forefront of the meeting. More than 140 island-casual CPAmerica managing partners and executive team leaders met, shared best practices, and listened to influential industry leaders as they planned and learned techniques to successfully develop and advance their firms into the future. A year of planning for the annual event, headed up by co-chairs Jackie Cardello of GRF CPAs & Advisors, and Greg Denning of Larson & Company, PC, made for a comprehensive agenda that delved into timely partner-related topics. New service offerings that firms are providing to their client base; transitioning into retirement; and trends in practice management and metrics were but a few of the topics covered at the four-day conference. After an aloha and opening remarks from CPAmerica President Alan Deichler on Wednesday, Jim Bourke of WithumSmith+Brown, opened the meeting with a talk titled: Technology is Driving Advisory Services. Bourke gave an overview into ways that firms are taking

their technology expertise to the next level and how practitioners are quickly realizing that technology is the driving force behind these services. Bourke later served as moderator on a CPAmerica member panel that covered the topic of hiring nontraditional professionals. The day ended with an optional dinner aboard the historic U.S.S. Missouri at Pearl Harbor. On Thursday, members saw Jennifer Wilson of ConvergenceCoaching, LLC, presenting on the topic of Letting Go With Grace: Leaving the Legacy You Intended. She spoke about the difficulties giving up your life’s work and transition into retirement. The session was designed to help those retiring and those supporting retirees in developing an all-new possibility for life after retirement. Later, Wilson’s topic shifted to: Transitioning Responsibility from One Generation to Another. Here, she addressed one of the most important elements of succession, effective transition of responsibility.

Events Special Issue Fall 2019

Management and Metrics. Platt led members through an overview of where the profession is today (based on CPAmerica and IPA surveys); he spoke on separating the hype from reality as to what firms are really doing; and explored winning strategies for staying ahead of the competition over the next 24 months.

At the LPR special event on Thursday, members experienced a traditional Polynesian luau

The special event featured a time-honored island experience at the elegant Four Seasons Resort. Members were able to discover Hawaiian culture through food, music and entertainment at a traditional John Lauseng of Aldrich Group then acted Polynesian luau oceanside on the lush lawn as moderator for a member sharing best-of- of the hotel. the-best panel titled: Developing Soft Skills in Your Professionals. This session covered Finally, planning was started for the 2020 business management and organization. LPR, which will take place next year in White Sulfur Springs, West Virginia, at the The action started Friday with Mike Platt historic Greenbrier Hotel on September of INSIDE Public Accounting, presenting 22-25. CPAmerica looks forward to seeing on the matter of Trends in Practice you there.

Leading Partners, Firm Administrators Gathered in Hawaii in 2019 1) The LPR got the meetings rolling in earnest on Wednesday, Sept. 25 2) Scott Sorenson (Frankel Zacharia, LLC) and Alan Deichler (CPAmerica, Inc.) got into the Aloha Spirit 3) Jeff Albrecht (Sol Schwartz & Associates, P.C.), Grace Horvath (CPAmerica, Inc.), and Ernie Gelpi (Kushner LaGraize, L.L.C.) hang loose at the special event 4) Hank Wolfson (Gray, Gray & Gray, LLP) and Patty Kautz (VonLehman CPA & Advisory Firm) soaking in some good member sharing 5) Jim Bourke (WithumSmith+Brown, PC) was one of the 2019 speakers 6) Hawaiian Fire Dancers turned up the heat at the traditional Polynesian luau







More 2019 LPR/FAR images Jeremy Sperring (Frazier & Deeter, LLC), Frank Monaco (415 Group), Brian Malthouse (VonLehman CPA & Advisory Firm) and James Rinn (Maxwell Locke & Ritter LLP)

CPAmerica’s Firm Administrators Roundtable

Tiffany Ryan, Kim Davis (GRF CPAs & Advisors), Bill and Maureen Murphy (GRF CPAs & Advisors), and Naomi & Tad Tadani (N&K CPAs, Inc.)

John Cournan (Packer Thomas), Don Cowan (Cg Tax, Audit & Advisory), and William Vennetti (Packer Thomas)

Parton, Rohrbach are the 2020 co-chairs for the Leading Partners Retreat

2020 Co-Chair Mike Parton

CPAmerica’s annual Leading Partners Retreat is the association’s flagship event and it involves coordinating a myriad of details. This can only be done with the direction and cooperation of our members and ensures that attendees are able to continue to effectively grow their firms. The importance of having the expertise and perspective of the co-chairs during the planning process is crucial.

The co-chairs help orchestrate this meeting and they represent CPAmerica’s memberdriven emphasis. The upcoming 2020 Leading Partners Retreat taking place in White Sulphur Springs, West 2020 Co-Chair Shane Rohrbach Virginia, will see co-chairs Mike Parton of Coulter & Justus, P.C., and Shane Rohrbach of Gollob Morgan Peddy PC, both help 2019 Co-Chair make this all come together as the event Jackie Cardello happens on September 22-25. CPAmerica would also like to thank our outgoing co-chairs for 2019, Jackie Cardello of GRF CPAs & Advisors, and Greg Denning of Larson & Company, PC, for their exceptional work in setting up the retreat in Kapolei, Hawaii, this year. Their help with the planning calls and welcoming 2019 Co-Chair Greg Denning attendees to the event was greatly appreciated by CPAmerica.

The 2019 Firm Administrators Roundtable – designed to provide personnel with best practices examples and member sharing The 2019 CPAmerica Firm Administrators Roundtable (FAR) continued to provide sessions filled with beneficial information to bring back to your firm and highlighted how firm administrators (FAs) could learn best practices to become better advisors and leaders within their teams. This September in Kapolei, Hawaii, at the gorgeous Four Seasons Resort O’ahu, FAs heard presentations from industry speakers such as: Jim Bourke (Withum Smith + Brown) spoke in a joint two-part session with LPR on Technology is Driving Advisory Services and later on, his topic was Hiring Nontraditional Professionals with the COO Panel; Amy Vetter (The B3 Method Institute) spoke on Business, Balance & Bliss: How the B3 Method can Transform Your Career and then after a networking break came Becoming a Cherished Advisor; John Lausing (Aldrich Group) moderated Member Sharing Best of the Best Panel: Developing Soft Skills in Your Professionals; and Michelle Rojas (Kushner LaGraize, L.L.C.) led a member sharing panel on HR Best Practices. On the last day, speaker topics and member sharing content and discussions continued with Kimberley Davis (GRF CPAs & Advisors) and Robert Daniel (Pulakos CPAs, PC) went over Staffing for 2024 and Beyond; and Patty Kautz (VonLehman CPA & Advisory Firm) and James Rinn (Maxwell, Locke & Ritter LLP) co-facilitated Member Sharing - What Keeps You Up At Night? Firm administrators act to 7555 West University Avenue make sure that the initiatives of the firm are met and Gainesville, Florida 32607 that partners and staff are (352) 727-4070 able to perform their work seamlessly. This year’s FAR also had member sharing sessions that assisted the group in learning effective Send news & feedback to leadership skills crucial for the growth of their firms.

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11 2019 CPAmerica Advantage Newsletter (Plus LPR Insert)  

This is the November 2019 CPAmerica Advantage newsletter. Articles include: CPAConnect member firm merges with CPAmerica member firm; new me...

11 2019 CPAmerica Advantage Newsletter (Plus LPR Insert)  

This is the November 2019 CPAmerica Advantage newsletter. Articles include: CPAConnect member firm merges with CPAmerica member firm; new me...

Profile for cpamerica