December 7, 2023


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Professionals on the Move: May 2021

Professionals on the Move is a roundup of recent promotions and hires in and arround the accounting profession and technology providers that support the profession.

Roswell Park Executive Promoted to Chief Financial Officer

Following a national search, Ryan Grady, CPA, has been appointed Chief Financial Officer at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center, planning, leading and organizing the activities of the Department of Finance.

He succeeds Gregory McDonald, CPA, who will retire effective June 1 after a 26-year career at Roswell Park.

On staff since 2014, Grady previously served as Vice President of Finance and Payer Relations and prior to that, Director of Finance Transformation. As CFO, Grady will shape financial policy, developing systems and processes that support decision making, financial reporting, and internal controls.

Ryan Grady earned his Bachelor of Science from the University at Buffalo and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants as well as the Healthcare Financial Management Organization.

Dark Horse CPAs Announces Promotion of Two Accelerators to Principals

Dark Horse CPAs, a top accounting and tax firm serving small businesses and individuals across the nation, recently announced the promotions of two Accelerators to Principals of the firm.

Natalie Cohen earned a degree in accounting and international business from Seattle Pacific University in 2011 and her CPA license in 2014. During a nine-year stint in public accounting with a large national CPA firm, she provided accounting and tax support to a wide range of individuals and entities. Cohen entered the Dark Horse Accelerator program in September 2020. Cohen’s outstanding client service to these businesses in both tax work and accounting has earned her a seat at the table as an equity Principal of the firm. Cohen has established her SMB accounting and tax practice in Portland, Oregon.

Hayes Hokanson completed her CPA certificate while an undergraduate at the University of California at Santa Barbara and went on to obtain her MBA at San Diego State University. Hokanson gained in-house accounting experience before establishing her own consulting firm in 2011. After nine years’ experience providing finance, bookkeeping and fractional CFO services to business clients, she joined the Accelerator program at Dark Horse with the goal of growing her business and broadening her client base. Hokanson serves the North San Diego area.

The Dark Horse Principal Accelerator Program was created for CPAs wanting to build a scalable book of business at a firm that empowers them with the resources and support to grow intelligently and profitably. Accelerators are put through a training program that acclimates them to the firm’s bot-enabled tech stack, followed by proprietary one-on-one sales training and coaching. Upon completion of training, they begin building their book by fielding inquiries from potential Dark Horse clients.

Larry Autrey Named to Fort Worth Inc.: The 400

Whitley Penn Managing Partner, Larry Autrey, has been selected to appear in Fort Worth Inc.: The 400.  This listing includes the names and profiles of 400 of Fort Worth’s most influential people.

Autrey has more than 30 years of tax, advisory and business valuation experience focused on public and private clients. His areas of practice include mergers and acquisitions, manufacturing, distribution, profit enhancement, professional services, business valuations and estate planning.

Autrey is the Chair of North America for Nexia International, the Former Chairman for the Major Firms Group, a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), and a member of the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants (TXCPA).

Autrey is also on the Cook Children’s Hospital Board of Trustees, the Texas Land Conservancy Board, a Board Member for the Community Enrichment Center, and is a Chairman for the Community Foundation of North Texas. 

Jim Penn Named Outstanding CFO: Finance Team at D CEO’s Financial Executives Awards

Whitley Penn Co-Founder, Partner and CFO, Jim Penn, has been named as Outstanding Chief Financial Officer: Finance Team for the 2021 DCEO Financial Executives Awards. Through the collaborative efforts of the editors at D CEO, the Association for Corporate Growth, the Dallas CPA Society, and Financial Executives International, this awarded the top financial executives in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

In addition to serving as the firm’s CFO, Penn is also a partner in the Forensic, Litigation & Valuation Services practice group and is a frequent public speaker on litigation and valuation topics. He is a certified public accountant (CPA) and Accredited in Business Valuations (ABV).  

Penn earned his BBA from the University of Houston and has been instrumental in the firm repeatedly achieving the “Cougar 100” recognition from his alma mater for being one of the fastest growing UH Cougar-owned and Cougar-led businesses.

Penn is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) including the Forensic & Valuation Services Division, Fort Worth Chapter of Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants (TXCPA), Financial Consulting Group, LC, and the Dallas & Tarrant County Bar Association Family Law Sections.

Baker Tilly Promotes Six New Managing Partners

Leading advisory CPA firm Baker Tilly US, LLP (Baker Tilly) recently promoted six practice leaders to managing partner effective June 1.

Baker Tilly’s newest managing partners are:

Heather Acker, CPA – Risk Advisory, encompassing the full spectrum of risk, governance and compliance considerations in areas such as internal audit, cybersecurity, enterprise risk management, regulatory compliance and management of strategic, technological, financial, and operational risks.

Ann E. Blakely – Baker Tilly Digital, helping organizations modernize legacy technology and business operations with digital solutions that are easy to understand and deliver efficiencies and help them to grow and compete in the market. 

William Bressette, CPCM, CFCM, CCCM – Government Contractor Solutions, helping clients address complex regulatory compliance, audit, information systems and other government oversight burdens.

Cary Mailandt – Business Advisory Services, helping operating companies and private equity firms with their transaction advisory, CFO advisory, strategy consulting, valuation and fund administration needs.

Matthew R. Morris, CFA, CLP – Global Forensics and Litigation Services, delivering accurate and reliable financial analysis for companies in critical situations, including the recently introduced Quantum, a new digital claims calculation platform for the commercial insurance market.

Lynette Stolarzyk, JD, LLM – Specialty Tax, including international tax, tax advocacy and controversy services, mergers and acquisitions tax, research and development credits, cost segregation and state and local tax.

DHG Welcomes Joey Ward as Partner in Nashville

Dixon Hughes Goodman (DHG), a U.S. top 20 professional services firm, recently announced that Joey Ward has joined the firm as an Assurance Partner in Nashville, Tennessee. Joey has 27 years of experience across public accounting, business development and financial management, serving domestic and international businesses in the construction, real estate, manufacturing, retail and distribution sectors.

Joey will bring unique insight to DHG from having worked both in industry and in public accounting. He spent two years working for a multi-billion, multinational general contractor and real estate company. He also served as Office Managing Partner and Construction Industry Managing Partner for one of the largest accounting firms in the U.S. He has significant experience with audits, transaction assistance and buy-side due diligence, M&A issues, purchase price accounting, IFRS and SEC matters, and has served as the lead partner on several IPOs.

Joey is joining the DHG team in Nashville, moving from Raleigh, NC.

AICPA Honors Gonzaga U. Accounting Alumna Julie Baker

Julie Baker, who earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in accounting and finance from Gonzaga University in 2020, is among 89 winners of the prestigious 2020 Elijah Watt Sells Award from the American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) honoring the nation’s top performers on the Uniform CPA Examination.

To qualify for the award, CPA candidates must obtain a cumulative average score above 95.50 across all four sections of the Uniform CPA Examination, pass all four sections on their first attempt and have completed testing in 2020.

In addition, Baker spent a semester studying abroad at Gonzaga-in-Florence, Italy, and still completed her degree in four years.

Gonzaga ranks 10th best in the nation among large programs for its first-time pass rate on the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination, according to results recently released by the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy. Gonzaga also remains No. 1 among schools in the Pacific Northwest and on the West Coast.

The Elijah Watt Sells Award program was established by the AICPA in 1923 to recognize outstanding performance on the CPA Exam. Sells, one of the first CPAs in the U.S., was active in the establishment of the AICPA and played a key role advancing professional education within the profession.

Autumn Kraus Named 2020 Sam Winstead Volunteer of the Year for the T. Boone Pickens YMCA

Whitley Penn Forensic Litigation Valuation Services Partner, Autumn Kraus, has been named the 2020 Sam Winstead Volunteer of the Year for the T. Boone Pickens YMCA.

This award is presented every year to a volunteer at each branch of the Dallas YMCA who has demonstrated exceptional commitment to a program or has helped further the goals of the YMCA in his or her community.

Kraus is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Accredited in Business Valuations (ABV), and is also a licensed attorney. She has spent more than a decade providing expert testimony on accounting, tax, financial, and business valuation issues in litigation cases in both state and federal courts. 

She is the current Treasurer and Board Member of Empowering Women as Leaders (EWL). Autumn is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), the Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants (TXCPA), as well as the Dallas, Tarrant and Houston County Bar Association – Family Law Section and ProVisors networking group.

Kraus graduated with her B.S. in Accounting and Marketing from Millikin University (Class of ’84), M.B.A from Stephen F. Austin State University (Class of ’94), and J.D. from Texas Wesleyan School of Law (Class of ’06).