Happenings!

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CPA Firm Management Association, leading the management of CPA firms by empowering and equipping them to success, today announces the addition of two board members. CPAFMA welcomes Jeremy Raines and Jon Tonkowich. Jeremy Raines has over 15 years’ worth of experience in a variety of high-growth industries working in business operations management, five and a half years’ worth of experience serving as Director of Operations for CPA firms. He previously spent four and a half years working at Dean Dorton based out of Lexington, Kentucky, serving as their Director of Firm Operations, and currently works for Whitlesey Advising based out of Hartford, Connecticut, ...
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The CPA Firm Management Association recently concluded the 2024 IT Survey designed to identify the technology that member firms are using and the trends impacting their accounting firms in the year ahead. The survey was conducted between November 28 and December 12, 2023, with 140 firms participating*. The survey is representative of CPAFMA membership with 91% having 10 personnel or more and 40% (56 firms) having multiple offices. Two survey respondents were 100% virtual, which was a new finding in the survey. Click here to look at the findings and benchmark your firm. Roman H. Kepczyk, CPA.CITP, PAFM is the Director of Firm Technology Strategy for Rightworks ...
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While the FTC Safeguards rule designed to protect financial and PII (personally identifiable information) has been around for decades, as of June 9, 2023, compliance of various components including a WISP became mandatory! While primarily targeted at companies maintaining more than 5,000 client records (think tax returns), certain safeguard components are required for firms with less than 5,000 records such as the use of multi-factor authentication, encryption of data, and secure disposal of Information. Also, with financial and criminal penalties imposed for “knowingly or inadvertently” disclosing taxpayer data, the IRS has issued additional guidance on key ...
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What does ‘hybrid’ mean? No one thought this would happen—the embrace of hybrid operations. As hybrid operations transform the meaning of the office changes, and professionals are interacting with the office in new ways. For example, 69% of financial services companies expect to allow up to 60% of their staff to work remotely at least one day per week after the pandemic. Prior to the pandemic, only 29% of financial services companies would allow such. [i] The workplace of today is dynamic and will continue to evolve as companies embrace and optimize the hybrid work model. In 2023, financial services firms are looking for a future that balances remote ...
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Since the pandemic hit, many accounting and advisory firms have had to rapidly pivot to a new way of working. Let’s be clear, firm professionals want to work from home (WFH). 1 in 3 remote workers say they would seek new employment if they were required to return to the office. While there was ample skepticism at first, and a short transition period to get used to a new mode of operating, firms and employees made remote work successful. Financial services executives said that 95% or more of their office workers switched to working from home during the crisis and, by and large, they maintained or improved productivity. Similarly, 79% of the employers surveyed ...
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LANSING, Mich. — The accounting firms of Maner Costerisan and Hall & Romkema, PLC recently announced a merger. Beginning Jan. 1, 2023, Hall & Romkema, PLC will be recognized as Maner Costerisan. “We view this merger as a significant benefit for clients of both firms and our collective team members,” said Trey Williams, CPA, president of Maner Costerisan. “We recognized right away there was a very apparent cultural and strategic fit. Combining our resources and knowledge base is a tremendous win for our clients.” Joe Romkema, CPA, managing member of Hall & Romkema PLC, echoed the sentiment: "Our top priorities have always been to provide the best ...
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The Struggle to Preserve Culture One thing almost all advisory and accounting firms agree on is that working in person has huge benefits toward building culture, collaboration and mentoring junior members of the firm. To that end, there’s a growing sentiment among leaders that fully remote working will not have a long term positive effective on the success of their organization. In fact, according to a recent survey of 500 managers, executives, and senior leadership in banking, accounting, and financial services, almost three quarters (74.1%) of leaders expect to have their staff back in the office full-time or in a hybrid capacity this year. In the same ...
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Amy Vetter for Breaking Beliefs recently shared time with CPAFMA Director of Information & Communication, Lauren Fitch, Chief Operating Officer with Hannis T. Bourgeois, LLP in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Watch a copy of the interview, here .
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The CPAFMA was honored to present their 2022 Emerging Leader of the Year Award during CONNECTIONS2022 held in late June in Portland, Maine. The recipient of this year's award is an individual who demonstrates a dedication to the CPA firm management profession through strong leadership, teamwork, and integrity, while continually developing their knowledge and experience, necessary in this ever-changing profession. According to this year’s recipient’s managing partner, “she has been awesome to work with at our firm. I don’t know how we could be the firm we are without her. She has become the backbone and the heart and soul of our firm.” This individual is ...
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This annual award is presented by the CPA Firm Management Association and has been awarded to some of North America’s most experienced and respected firm managers since its 1989 inception . It’s a Hall of Fame of sorts, recognizing outstanding and successful careers and firms that have embraced the role of the firm manager with successful results, exceeding expectations. The Firm Manager of the Year Award stands for Achievement, Commitment and Excellence and is awarded to CPA firm managers carrying such titles as firm administrator, director of administration, chief operating officer, chief financial officer, chief executive officer, principal and partner. ...
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EDINA, MN — January 13, 2022 — Abdo , a Minnesota-based public accounting firm providing audit, tax and consulting services for a wide range of governments, organizations and businesses, announces the promotion of its COO, Jana Cinnamon , to the position of partner. She is the first non-CPA partner in the firm’s history. “Jana is an incredible addition to our partner team,” said Steve McDonald, managing partner of Abdo. “She has a great combination of intelligence, caring and business sense that is hard to find in any individual.” McDonald noted that her leadership abilities have shaped the culture of the firm. “Her influence has created an exceptional employee ...
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Shared from the Dayton Business Journal's 2022 Playbook: The U.S. Supreme Court blocked enforcement of the Occupational Health and Safety Administration’s mandate-or-testing rule for large employers , and many businesses now have a high-stakes decision to make. f In its 6-3 ruling, the Supreme Court found the OSHA rule to be an overreach of emergency authority by the federal agency — capping off weeks of legal twists, turns and uncertainty that frustrated many employers. Employment attorneys say it’s good for employers to have clarity on the OSHA rule. Many have been bombarded with questions since plans for the rule were first announced back in September. ...
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The Federal Register will publish within days the Labor Department's rule requiring private businesses with 100 or more employees to vaccinate them or test them weekly, fulfilling an announcement President Joe Biden made in September. The Office of Management and Budget completed its required review of the emergency rule on Monday. "On November 1, the Office of Management and Budget completed its regulatory review of the emergency temporary standard. The Federal Register will publish the emergency temporary standard in the coming days," a Labor Department spokesman said. "The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has been working expeditiously to ...
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Montgomery, AL -- Jackson Thornton, a certified public accounting and consulting firm headquartered in Montgomery, AL, is pleased to announce that Alan Alexander, CPA, PAFM has been named Chair of the CPA Firm Management Association (CPAFMA). Alexander, who serves as Jackson Thornton’s Chief Operating Officer (COO), was recently installed as Chair at the CPAFMA’s National Practice Management Conference, held in partnership with the AICPA ENGAGE 2021 event. Founded in 1984, the Association was created to enable accounting firm managers to communicate with one another as well as serve as one representative voice of the profession. Alexander came to Jackson Thornton ...
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Right Networks conducted the 2021 Post-COVID Tax Season survey including participation of CPAFMA members to find out about their experience with tax production and applications through this pandemic year and to understand expectations going forward into a post-COVID world. The survey was completed by 285 firms with 77% of respondents being firm owners and senior management. The majority of respondents were in firms larger than 10 members and a third of the respondents were in multi-office firms. 58% Believe 2021 Better than Last Year: Whether it was the improving economy, comfort with technology, or positive outlook on the beating the COVID crisis, the ...
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The 2022 CPAFMA Firm Manager Compensation Survey is a tool that firms can use to help those in the firm manager role reach their career path goals. This survey was designed as a quick reference tool providing information relative to professionals managing accounting firms such as firm managers, directors of administration and chief operating officers. Each CPAFMA member firm received the survey and the response rate was 20%. The survey addresses gross billings for firms, firm size, compensation and benefits, hours worked, years of practice management experience, firm manager billable hours and location, retirement plans and partner transitions The responses ...
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CPAFMA Founder Passes

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On Saturday, March 19, 2022, Clifford Brownstein of North Potomac, MD passed away peacefully with his wife at his bedside. Cliff was a founding member of the Association for Accounting Administrators (now CPA Firm Management Association). Together with Don Scholl and Gene Cohen, Cliff was responsible for the organization and launching of the Association. These three had the vision which has led to successful practice management for CPA firms throughout North America since 1984. Beloved husband of Torri Schaffer Brownstein; devoted father of Evan (Laura), Kate (Grant), Alex and stepfather to Arielle (DJ) and Eric (Lisa); cherished grandfather of Audrey, Finley, ...
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DURHAM, NC--February 1, 2022-- In an effort to help accounting firms develop ethnically diverse talent, PCPS provided the George Willie Ethnically Diverse Student Scholarship & Internship, connecting PCPS member firms with promising accounting majors of diverse backgrounds. Several firms applied to serve as a cosponsoring firm that will provide an internship during busy season 2023 (January-April) to ethnically diverse students entering the accounting profession. AICPA PCPS has selected ten firms to cosponsor, and will award up to $10,000 per student towards their tuition in exchange for completing an internship with a cosponsoring firm. Four CPAFMA ...
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2022 CPAFMA Technology Survey Findings by Roman H. Kepczyk, CPA.CITP, PAFM The CPA Firm Management Association recently conducted its fourth comprehensive Information Technology survey tailored specifically to member firms with the goal of identifying the applications, products, and processes utilized by peers. The survey was conducted in December 2021 to determine what information technology firms would be utilizing in 2022 and compared to the results from previous surveys where appropriate. This survey further highlighted the unique nature of CPAFMA member firms which tend to be medium and larger-sized firms. 162 CPAFMA members participated, 87% of which ...
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EDINA, MN — January 13, 2022 — Abdo , a Minnesota-based public accounting firm providing audit, tax and consulting services for a wide range of governments, organizations and businesses, announces the promotion of its COO, Jana Cinnamon , to the position of partner. She is the first non-CPA partner in the firm’s history. “Jana is an incredible addition to our partner team,” said Steve McDonald, managing partner of Abdo. “She has a great combination of intelligence, caring and business sense that is hard to find in any individual.” McDonald noted that her leadership abilities have shaped the culture of the firm. “Her influence has created an exceptional ...
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