Albert L. Grasso
Albert Grasso, former Chuhak & Tecson president and now in an Of Counsel position with the firm, headed the tax practice and co-chaired the ERISA practice.
Al lectures nationally for the American Institute of CPAs and other groups on tax and employee benefits. He is past chairman of the American Management Association’s National Conference on Employee Benefits.
Textbooks written by Al are used nationwide by other professionals to understand the constantly changing tax and pension laws, and he is a member of the advisory board for the “The Accountant’s Business Manual.”
Al has been recognized as both a leading lawyer in the tax and employee benefits areas and as an Illinois Super Lawyer in tax matters.
- “AICPA Experts, Premier Federal Tax Update.” AICPA
- “Al Grasso’s Tax Briefs. Tax Planning for Closely Held Businesses.” AICPA
- “Compensation Issues in Not-For-Profit Organizations.” AICPA
- “S Corporation or Limited Liability Company.” Journal of Taxation
- “Tax Reform Act of 1986: Pension and Deferred Compensation Plans.” Prentice-Hall
- “Retirement Planning.” Federal Tax Workshops, Inc.
- “Compensating Employees of Tax-Exempt Organizations.” Illinois CPA Foundation
- “Unrelated Business Taxable Income.” Illinois CPA Foundation
- “Tax Reform Act of 1986.” AICPA, 1986
- “1987/1988 Annual Tax Update.” AICPA, 1987
- “Tax Planning Issues After TRA ’86.” AICPA, 1987
- “Partnerships – Taxable Income and Distributive Shares.” BNA Tax Management Portfolio 282-2nd, 1982
- “TAMRA-Technical Corrections Topics.” AICPA, 1988
- “Mastering the Tax Season.” AICPA. An annual update. 1988 to 1994
- “Closely Held Corporations.” Practitioners Pub. Co.
News & Articles
- Chuhak & Tecson attorneys selected as 2012 Super Lawyers and Rising Stars.
- Chuhak & Tecson attorney Albert Grasso receives 2010 AICPA Outstanding Discussion Leader Award.
- Chuhak & Tecson attorneys chosen for 2011 Illinois Super Lawyers and Rising Stars.
Memberships & Associations
American Bar Association
Chicago Bar Association
The Bar Association of the District of Columbia
Illinois Super Lawyers (2009 to 20012)
Leading Lawyers Network (2001 to 2011)
U.S. Army (1968 to 1970)
Corporate transactions & Business Law
Estate Planning & Asset Protection
Tax & Employee Benefits
Georgetown University, J.D. (1973)
Georgetown University, LL.M, Taxation (1974)
Georgetown University, BSFS (1968)
Bar & Court Admissions
District of Columbia (1973)
U.S. Tax Court (1974)
U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois (1974)
U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit (1980)
U.S. Supreme Court (1982)
Bio coming soon
Andrew Klemens is a tax manager at Wolf & Company in Oak Brook, Illinois. His areas of expertise include tax preparation and consultation for closely-held corporations and their shareholders, partnerships/LLCs, individual planning and taxation, employee benefits, multi-state taxation and representation before various taxing authorities including the Internal Revenue Service, Illinois Department of Revenue and the Illinois Department of Employment Security. He has a concentration in international tax planning including the use of Interest Charge Domestic International Sales Corporations (IC-DISCs). His expertise spans a variety of industries including manufacturing, retail, construction, healthcare and professional services.
Ann Ramos is a Lead Research Consultant with Training & Consulting for CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business in the metropolitan Chicago area.
Ann joined CCH in 1995 and brings 15 years of experience to the Tax & Accounting industry in the areas of training and consultation and technical writing. Ann conducts consulting engagements on integration and implementation of CCH IntelliConnect, Accounting Research Manager and ClientRelate.
Ann has a Bachelor of Science in Business/Information Systems and a Masters degree in Business/Information Systems in Management.
Brian Uhlig has spent the past 16 years in the Employee Benefits Business, 12 of those years with GCG Financial. Brian is responsible for oversight of the Em- ployee Benefits Service teams and how those services are delivered to our clients. He is also responsible for the sale of new and renewal business and works closely with our actuarial firm, Milliman USA, on our experience rated clients.
Brian graduated from The University of Iowa in 1992 with a BBA in Accounting. After working for a local bank, Brian joined GCG as an advisor. Brian then spent the next 9 years in the Employee Benefits Divi- sion helping to grow the business 5 -fold before being offered an opportunity to run the Chicago benefits practice of a large multi-national insurance brokerage firm. Brian rejoined GCG in his current leadership role in 2009.
Brian, along with our employee benefits division has consistently been recognized by many of the national carriers as a top producer and preferred broker. He is a member of the International Foundation of Em- ployee Benefits Plans where he is working his way towards the CEBS designation. He is also a member of NAIFA (National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors) and has served on various carrier advisory boards at the local level.
Brian has been a strong advocate on behalf of his clients. Whether it is through the implementation of a comprehensive, incentive based Health and Wellness program, a Self-Funded Feasibility analysis or simply through negotiations with the insurance carriers, Brian has always kept his clients’ financial interests as the number one priority.
Brian serves on the Board of Directors for The Great Lakes Adaptive Sports Association (GL ASA). GL ASA is a not for profit that promotes the well being of individuals with physical or visual disabilities through adaptive sports.
Brian’s focus is also on his family life. He is married with four children and he devotes his time with them in various activities and leisure activities. Brian also stays active with softball, basketball, golf and skiing depending on the season.
Dan concentrates his practice in corporate and individual tax planning, general business planning and consulting, retirement planning, financial management and control, and financial statement interpretation. He serves clients in a variety of industries, including manufacturing and construction.
Before establishing CDH, Dan was a partner with a predecessor firm for seven years until it reorganized as Corbett, Duncan & Hubly, P.C.
Dan is closely connected to each of his clients and their businesses. For many years, he has served as an outsourced CFO for a prominent manufacturing client. He has helped the company structure new, tax advantageous entities and has led the succession planning and transfer of the company to the next generation. As CFO, he has assisted in setting general accounting procedures, dealing with multiple state taxes and providing ongoing general business advice.
Serving as the outsourced CFO for a construction company client, Dan completed all the detail work to secure an Industrial Revenue Bond, which provides an interest rate substantially below the prime lending rate. He was involved in the tax advantageous structuring of their related businesses. The company's owner relies on Dan as a trusted confidant, and with both of them working as a team, the company has grown substantially.
Knowing his clients as individuals and where they want to go as business owners has enabled the growth of many businesses and has gained the owners' trust to regularly seek his business advice. Dan attributes part of his success to the open and frequent communication with each of his clients. The timing of his job is not associated with "work hours, " but instead is relative to the needs of the clients.
When asked what inspired him to become an accountant, Dan said that being an accountant seemed an obvious career path. While growing up, the father of one of Dan's friends was an accountant, and it opened a "window of reality" to see first-hand what a career in accounting offered.
Dan resides in Des Plaines with his wife, Mary Kay, and their children, Jeff and Melissa, when they are home from college. He enjoys spending time with his family, traveling and fine dining.
Bio coming soon
David is a partner at Horwood Marcus & Berk Chartered in the firm’s state and local tax (SALT) group. David’s clients, who range from multinational corporations to individuals, all have one thing in common: the need to limit their state and local tax exposure either through planning or litigation. David advises clients on how to structure their business to reduce their state tax liabilities and he also defends clients in audits, administrative proceedings and court against tax assessments.
David has represented clients in over 30 states and has advised clients on income tax, sales/use tax, franchise tax, and unclaimed property matters, including matters involving nexus, apportionment, business income, unitary business groups, credits, losses, exemptions, and the tax base. David has argued cases at the Illinois Supreme Court, the Illinois Appellate Court and the New York Tax Appeals Tribunal.
In addition to representing clients on a national basis, David is also very active in the SALT community. He is the Chair of the SALT committee for the Illinois CPA Society and the former chair of the Chicago Bar Association’s committee on state and local taxation. David also speaks and writes regularly on SALT matters. He is a co-author of the chapter entitled Illinois Sales and Use Tax in the American Bar Association’s Sales and Use Tax Handbook and is on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Multistate Taxation and Incentives. In addition, he has spoken on behalf of NYU’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies, the Council on State Taxation (COST), Tax Executives Institute (TEI), the American Bar Association, the Institute of Professionals in Taxation (IPT), the Illinois CPA Society, and the Chicago Tax Club.
David graduated magna cum laude with a degree in English from the University of Notre Dame and received his law degree from Columbia University.
MeadWestvaco Corp. v. Illinois Department of Revenue), 128 S.Ct. 1498 (2008) (income tax on sale of non-unitary division)
Irwin Industrial Tool Co. v. Department of Revenue, 238 Ill2d 332, 938 NE2d 459, 345 Ill Dec 20 (2010)(use tax on airplane hangared outside the state)
Milwaukee Safeguard v. Selcke, 179 Ill 2d 94, 688 NE2d 68 , 227 Ill Dec 731 (1997) (constitutional challenge to insurance premiums tax)
Borden Chemicals and Plastics v. Zehnder, 726 NE2d 73, 312 Ill App 3d 35 (2000) (income tax on non-resident limited partner)
Home Interiors & Gifts v. Illinois Department of Revenue, 251 Ill Dec 820, 741 NE2d 998 (2000) (income tax on interest from non-working capital)
The Home Depot USA v. Hamer, Illinois Appellate Court unpublished order (2010)(sales tax bad debt deduction)
Ogden Chrysler Plymouth v. Bower, 251 Ill Dec 820, 741 NE2d 998 (2004) (sales tax on car manufacturer incentive payments)
Exxon Corp. v. Bower, Illinois Appellate Court unpublished order (2004) (income tax on distributive share from non-resident partnerships)
Stark Materials Company v. Illinois Department of Revenue, 812 NE2d 362, 349 Ill App 3d 316 (2004) (sales tax on delivery charges)
The Dow Chemical Company v. Illinois Department of Revenue, 359 Ill App. 3d 1, 832 NE2d 284 , 295 Ill Dec 133 (2005) (unitary business group determination for income tax)
Nationwide General Insurance Company, et al. v. Shapo, 263 Ill Dec 210 , 767 NE2d 936 (4th Dist. 2002)(insurance premiums tax refunds for unconstitutional tax)
Nicor Corp. v. Illinois Department of Revenue, No. 1-07-1359 (Illinois Appellate Court, unpublished)(2008)(income tax on sale of subsidiary)
Elaine Weiss is the President and CEO of the Illinois CPA Society, Illinois CPA Foundation and CPAs for the Public Interest. In 2004, Accounting Today named her as one of the “Top 1 00 Most Influential People in Accounting.” Under her direction the Society has embraced new technologies and ideas to increase awareness of the value of the profession and guide its members through the constant change of today’s global business environment.
Prior to joining the Illinois CPA Society in 2002, Elaine served as the Associate Director of the American Bar Association (ABA). She has also held the position of Regional Director for the United States Department of Health and Human Services and staff attorney for the Special Commission on Administration of Justice for Cook County, Illinois.
Elaine holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism and a J.D. from the National Law Center at George Washington University in Washington D.C. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Association Forum of Chicagoland and in 2007 was awarded their John C. Thiel Distinguished Service Award.
The Illinois CPA Society, founded in 1903, is the fifth largest state society in the nation with approximately 24,000 members. It is the premier professional organization representing CPAs in Illinois. During its over 100 years of existence, the Society has advanced the highest ethical and financial standards of the profession, and has been a leader in educating the public on financial issues.
President and Chief Executive Officer, CPA2Biz, Inc.
Erik Asgeirsson is a technology industry veteran with expertise in cloud computing , e-commerce and business expansion. He has led CPA2Biz, the technology subsidiary of the American Institute of CPAs, since 2002.
During Erik’s tenure, CPA2Biz has posted strong financial results and added several new lines of business, including a package of leading, cloud-based software solutions that help transform client services for accounting firms. In addition, CPABiz.com has become the leading e-commerce site for the CPA profession and one of the top 500 online stores, as ranked by Internet Retailer.
Erik believes the rise of always-available data through the cloud, coupled with the maturing capabilities of smartphones and other mobile devices, represents a significant opportunity for small- and medium-sized firms to improve client service and boost profits. It’s an approach he embraces for his own business, as CPA2Biz uses the same programs it offers to CPA firms to automate payroll, billing, tax and accounting workflows.
Erik is regularly listed in Accounting Today’s annual Top 100 Most Influential People in the CPA Profession, and is a member of the DigitalNow Advisory Group, which counsels association leaders on opportunities in the digital age.
Before joining CPA2Biz, Erik held a variety of senior positions at AT&T in sales, product management and operations. In his last role, Erik was a sales director for AT&T Business Services—the company’s largest division—where he oversaw a market segment with revenues of more than $100 million.
Erik holds an MBA from The New York University Stern School of Business and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from George Washington University. Early in his career, he served as a Peace Corps volunteer in Tanzania.
He lives in Rye, N.Y., with his wife and three daughters. In his spare time, Erik is an enthusiastic sailor and skier.
You can email Erik at firstname.lastname@example.org
Frank Giudice is a Consultant for CCH Tax and Accounting, a Wolters Kluwer business. Frank began his career with CCH in January 1985. He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting in 1981 from Elmhurst College in Elmhurst, IL.
Frank is primarily responsible for providing training and consulting on ProSystem fx Tax, including speaking at training and sales seminars. At other times, Frank is involved in special projects and various Sales and Marketing activities.
Prior to his current role at CCH, Frank was an Assistant Tax Director for CCH Computax in Niles, IL from 1991 ‐1993 and was responsible for managing the Tax Technical Support Group and assisting customers and employees with support issues.
From 1987 – 1991, Frank was part of the National Tax Support Group that provided various support functions to Strategic Accounts and other CCH Computax Service Centers. Before his CCH career, Frank spent 5 years with a public accounting firm in Oak Brook, IL.
As a member of the Training & Consulting department, Frank brings over 27 years of experience with his vast knowledge of the tax law and the ProSystem fx Suite of products
Professor Emeritus Accounting and Economics
Since 1976, George has worked in many areas of accounting, focusing on Auditing and Accounting Education. In 1976, he participated in the Internal Auditor Intern Program at the Clark Equipment Company. While working for the public accounting firm of Deloitte, Haskins, and Sells, he served in the positions of Senior Assistant Auditor and Comprehensive Business Services Consultant. He also worked as an Internal Auditor for the Brunswick Corporation. This included special projects and operational audits both in the United States and in Europe.
George is Professor Emeritus of Accounting and Economics at Oakton Community College where he received the 2003 Hartstein Award for academic excellence and was twice nominated for the Illinois CPA Society educator award. He is often a presenter on the work place environment, ethics, economics, auditing, fraud, and accounting issues for CPA and IMA groups. He has also done presentations for the NACM (National Association of Credit Managers) and for the Treasury Management Association of Chicago.
Presently, he belongs to the AICPA as well as the Illinois CPA society, where he serves as chair of the Ethics Committee. He kept his hand in education by teaching auditing, accounting and economics at universities in the area. George is affiliated with Leif Jensen and Associates and is an instructor for Audit Sense for which he writes an ethics blog with Elizabeth Pittelkow.
George has a MAS from the University of Illinois and an MBA and Certificate of Achievement in International Economics from DePaul University. He also has a BA degree from the University of Illinois in Chicago in the teaching of English.
George lives in Mount Prospect, Illinois with his wife and their two youngest children. His eldest son is now serving in the U.S. Marine Corps.
Jack Ablin is Executive Vice President and Chief Investment Officer with Harris Private Bank. Mr. Ablin chairs the Asset Allocation Committee and is responsible for establishing investment policy and strategy within the Personal Investment Management Group. Mr. Ablin joined BMO Harris in 2001 and has more than 25 years of experience in money management.
Mr. Ablin earned a bachelor’s degree from Vassar College, New York, where he graduated with honors with an AB in Mathematics and Computer Science. Mr. Ablin received an MBA with honors and graduated cum laude from Boston University, Massachusetts, and is a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma International Honor Society. He holds the Chartered Financial Analyst designation. He is a member of the CFA Society of Chicago and a CFA Institute Charter holder.
- Author of Reading Minds and Markets: Minimizing Risk and Maximizing Returns in a Volatile Global Marketplace, published in July 2009 by F.T. Press; Wall Street Journal ’s best-seller list, 2009
- Written on a variety of topics, including investor psychology and financial markets outlook
- Frequent contributor to CNBC, Bloomberg, The Wall Street Journal and Barron’s
- Served as a Professor of Finance at Boston University, Graduate School of Management
- Spent five years as a Money and Markets correspondent for WTLV, the NBC affiliate in Jacksonville, Florida
- Named one of the top 100 Wealth Advisors in North America, by Citywealth magazine in 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2012
James P. Jones
Jim Jones is the COO, CFO and member of the Board of Directors of Edward Don & Company, the world’s leading distributor of foodservice equipment and supplies with six locations across the U.S. He has been with the company since 1996.
Prior to working with Edward Don & Company, Jim was the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Reliable Corporation/Office 1 Superstores, a national direct mail distributor of office supplies. He led the sale of the business to Boise Cascade in 1995. Prior to working at Reliable Corporation/Office 1 Superstores, Jim was the Director of Corporate Finance at Shand Morahan & Company, the Corporate Controller at Mediflex Systems Corporation and worked in the Emerging Business group at PriceWaterhouseCoopers.
A member of the Illinois CPA Society since 1979 and on the Board of Directors since 2006, Jim has served in numerous capacities prior to being named Chairperson, including Vice-Chairperson and Treasurer of the Board and Chair of the Finance & Treasury Committee. He has also been a member of the Audit Committee, Finance & Treasury Committee and the Center for Corporate Financial Leadership (CCFL) Advisory Group. As Chair, Jim, who has both public and industry experience, hopes to embrace the diverse expertise found within the Society membership and plans to lead the charge to engage all member groups and enhance the member experience for all, with a particular emphasis on young professionals.
Jim has a BS in Accounting from DePaul University. He is Treasurer of the Adam Don Foundation and on the Elgin High School District Accounting Advisory Board. Jim is also involved with the DePaul University Alumni Sharing Knowledge (ASK) Program as well as the Irish American Heritage Center and Irish Fellowship Club of Chicago.
Joann Noe Cross
Joann Noe Cross is Professor of Accounting in the College of Business Administration at the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh. She received her Ph.D. in Accountancy from the University of Illinois – Urbana. Professor Cross led the College of Business Administration’s successful AACSB Reaccredidation in 1999 and coordinated the College’s Wisconsin Forward Award application process in 2000. Joann is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and numerous other professional and academic organizations. Dr. Cross presents numerous AICPA accounting and auditing seminars around the country, speaks at various conferences throughout the year and maintains an active consulting practice.
Leah Donti, an internationally recognized seminar leader in accounting, has been doing seminars full time since 1991 through her seminar business. She conducts in-house training to CPA firms and various companies. As well, she does CPE courses through the CPA societies.
She speaks on IFRS, variable interest entities, accounting and auditing update, FASB update, SEC and PCAOB update, revenue recognition, stock based compensation, business combinations, compilation and review, FASB codification, and fair value accounting.
She also provides proprietary prep seminars for accounting examinations (CPA, IQEX, CMA and CGA).
Prior to beginning her private practice in 1991, Ms. Donti worked for a major information management consulting organization, where she provided training to offices across North America. She also worked with an accounting software firm, offering accounting education courses to clients on site. In addition, she held positions in internal audit and cost accounting with Canadian Pacific, one of the largest companies in Canada.
In 2010, 2011 and 2012, Leah Donti received the AICPA Outstanding Discussion Leader Award.
For more than 25 years Mr. Goforth has been a much sought after speaker and nationally respected consultant. In his capacity with Accounting Transition Advisors LLC, Mr. Goforth has consulting and advisory responsibility within the states of Illinois, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. His specialization is strategic transition and succession planning, practice valuation, merger and acquisition consultation exclusively within the accounting profession. Mr. Goforth consults to a wide range of clients from smaller firms lead by a sole practitioner to several of the Accounting Today Top 100 firms. Mr. Goforth has presented CPE classes and seminars for the Michigan Association of Certified Public Accountants (MACPA), the Illinois CPA Society (ICPAS), the Indiana Certified Public Accountants Society (INCPAS) and the Independent Accountants Association of Michigan (IAAM). Prior to Mr. Goforth's affiliation with Accounting Transition Advisors he was CEO and co-founder of an international consulting firm with consulting experience in more than 35 countries.
Marcus Newman is a Vice President of GCG Financial, Inc. He is responsible for the health insurance of more than 300 privately held businesses across the country.
Additionally, Marcus has been endorsed by the American Animal Hospital Association (AAHA) and the American Society of Ophthalmic Administrators (ASOA) to provide employee benefits solutions to the thousands of organizations across the country that comprise each respective association’s membership communities.
Marcus has recently enjoyed time traveling the country on the speakers’ circuit, educating small businesses throughout the Nation on The Affordable Care Act (ACA) and how implementation of current and future legislation will affect their employee benefit offerings. Marcus has become an industry leader and expert on the subject of healthcare reform, and has help small businesses across the country navigate the evolving health insurance environment.
Marcus provides expert and objective guidance with respect to group insurance benefits of all kinds, 401(k) and other salary deferral plans, pension and profit sharing plans, deferred compensation plans, executive benefits and a wide variety of investments for closely held business owners.
Marcus is a graduate of Northeastern Illinois University, having received his B.A. in 1995, where he studied Philosophy.
Marcus spent several years working with teenagers as a social worker, prior to joining the firm in 1997. Upon joining GCG Financial, Marcus quickly built an extensive employee benefits practice, developed considerable expertise and established himself as a champion of client service.
Marcus is a consistent revenue leader at the firm and annual qualifier for the Million Dollar Round Table. He is the youngest GCG advisor ever elected to the Executive Board of the Chicago Chapter of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors.
Marcus is also the Founder and President of Array Education, Inc., an organization committed to the prevention of teenage substance abuse and addiction through a wide variety of programs that help young people make responsible, informed decisions about drugs and alcohol.
Marcus lives in Deerfield, Illinois with his wife, Sheryl and his three daughters, Zoe, Josie, and Talia. Marcus is an avid reader and a patron of the theater.
Bio coming soon
Long for Success, LLC is a premier consulting firm specializing in QuickBooks Consulting, Business Coaching, and Professional Speaking. Serving clients nationwide with over 20 years of experience and a national reputation as a QuickBooks expert, owner Michelle L. Long can help you succeed with QuickBooks or your business! Michelle is an Advanced Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor and has a unique relationship with Intuit (the company that owns QuickBooks) as a national trainer, consultant and author. In addition to QuickBooks consulting, Michelle helps coach entrepreneurs and small business owners to start and grow their own business. She combined these two specialties into her first book ‘Successful QuickBooks Consulting’ which has been very well received and appreciated by thousands. In addition, Michelle provides business coaching services and helps aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners start and/or grow their business. Michelle has an MBA in Entrepreneurship, is a Certified FastTrac Facilitator for The Kauffman Foundation (world renowned center for entrepreneurship) and Adjunct Professor of Strategic Management for University of Missouri — Columbia. She has taught thousands about QuickBooks and conducted seminars nationally for Intuit. She has written and recorded numerous courses for Intuit Academy and contributed articles to Intuit ProConnection Newsletter. She is the author of the book Successful QuickBooks Consulting: The Comprehensive Guide to Starting and Growing a QuickBooks Consulting Business and was Technical Editor for Laura Madeira’s book: QuickBooks 2009 Solutions Guide. She is a Certified QuickBooks Enterprise ProAdvisor, Certified QuickBooks POS ProAdvisor, and Sleeter Group Certified Consultant. Michelle was named a Financial Services Champion of the Year for 2007 by the Small Business Administration in recognition of her dedication to helping entrepreneurs and small business owners. She is a Certified FastTrac Facilitator and has facilitated the Kauffman Foundation’s FastTrac NewVenture program and Listening to Your Business workshop. She has been instrumental in helping hundreds of entrepreneurs start and grow their business. Long for Success, LLC provides consulting services to clients (including other accounting professionals) nationwide and Michelle can be reached via e-mail at email@example.com Michelle is located in Lee’s Summit, Missouri a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri
Patrick J. McDonnell is the President & CEO of The McDonnell Company, LLC, a firm that advises organizations in transition. Pat is a retired Global Director of Assurance Services for PricewaterhouseCoopers and the former Vice Chairman of Business Assurance for Coopers & Lybrand, a position he held from 1993 to 1998. After retirement in 1998, he became the President and COO of LAI Worldwide, a $90 million, SEC Registrant Executive Recruiting and Consulting firm. Upon its successful sale, Pat has created a second career managing and advising organizations from startups to those with revenues of over $400 million, in a variety of industries, including technology, manufacturing, insurance and distribution.
Pat serves on the Board and is Chairman of the Audit Committee of Material Sciences Corp., a $150M registrant manufacturer of treated metals and on the Board and Audit Committee of First Midwest Bancorp, a $8 billion bank holding company. He is a past board member of two other Registrant Companies, both of which changed ownership. He sits on the advisory boards of several private companies.
Bio coming soon
Paula Cozzi-Goedert concentrates her practice on representing non-profit organizations including professional societies, trade associations, charities and private foundations. She received the John C. Thiel Distinguished Service Award from Association Forum and the President's Award from the Association Foundation Group.
Paula has served on the Association Forum's Board of Directors, the board of the Foundation of the American Society of Association Executives and the board of Rush Oak Park Hospital. She is also a member of the Guild Board of the Lyric Opera of Chicago.
Ralph Nach is the founder and president of SkillSmart LLC, a training and technical advisory firm. He is a sought-after conference speaker and course facilitator throughout the US on technical topics including the application of domestic and international accounting, auditing, financial reporting, and quality control standards; and nontechnical topics related to leadership and interpersonal development. In addition, Ralph currently serves as a:
• Facilitator of advanced auditor training for 20-20 Services LLC, and
• Technical advisor on litigation and financial forensics services for SS&G Inc.
Ralph has served the accounting profession for over 35 years in a variety of capacities including auditor, quality control director, and external peer reviewer. He also served as a national office quality control partner for the fifth largest international accounting firm. Ralph is also dedicated to the learning and development profession and served as the Chief Learning Officer nationally for American Express Tax and Business Services, Inc.
Ralph holds a BSBA with honors from the Heller College of Business of Roosevelt University in Chicago, Illinois, where he was elected to membership in Beta Gamma Sigma and the Franklin Honor Society. Ralph is a graduate of the inaugural class of the American Express Leadership Effectiveness Advancement Program (LEAP), designed to prepare the organization’s high-performing employees to assume increased leadership responsibilities.
In addition, Ralph served as an adjunct lecturer in graduate-level accounting, finance, and economics at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois completed an intensive 5-day Mediation Training Professional Development Program sponsored by the Northwestern University School of Continuing Studies.
Ralph has served as author, co-author, contributing author, or technical editor of several technical reference works including:
• PPC’s Interactive Disclosure Library, PPC/Thomson Reuters, 2011;
• PPC’s Guide to Preparing Financial Statements, PPC/Thomson Reuters, 2010;
• GAAP Interpretation and Application, John Wiley & Sons, 2001–2010;
• Handbook of Accounting and Auditing, Warren, Gorham & Lamont, 1999;
• Controllers Policies and Procedures Manual, Warren, Gorham & Lamont, 1998; and
• Technical Practice Aids, AICPA, 1995.
Ralph currently volunteers his time and skills as a member of the College of Business Advisory Board for his alma mater and, when he is able to squeeze in the rehearsal time, sings in the choir of his congregation. Ralph is a licensed CPA in the State of Illinois, where he lives with his wife, Marcie. Ralph and Marcie are the proud parents of two grown sons.
Randolph P. (Randy) Johnston
Randolph P. (Randy) Johnston, Executive Vice President, K2 Enterprises - Network Management Group, Inc., is a nationally recognized educator, consultant and writer with over 30 years experience in strategic technology planning, systems and network integration, accounting software selection, business development and management, disaster recovery and contingency planning, and process engineering.
Randy’s work at K2 Enterprises, the nation’s leading technology CPE provider in the CPA industry, includes preparing and presenting technology seminars on 30+ technology topics, consulting for high profile technology vendors, and delivering national seminars to CPAs, business groups and IT leaders in industries including accounting, healthcare and banking.
Prior to his work at K2 Enterprises, Randy was Executive Vice President for Network Management Group, Inc., where he consulted on strategic technology reviews including planning, selection and implementation. He is an expert in the areas of infrastructure, business continuity, accounting software, CRM, business intelligence, and SPAM filtering with DoubleCheck. Mr.. Johnston was also Department Chair and Adjunct Professor of the Mathematics and MIS Departments at Hutchinson Community College, where he designed and taught courses in all areas of mathematics & computing.
As a programmer and system designer at Professional Data Services, Randy developed a medical system including the first paperless claims in Kansas, appointments and collection systems. There he was involved in a chain of ComputerLand stores and received the first IBM PC in Kansas. He also worked as a programmer and system designer at Farmland Industries where he developed and maintained P&L, Credit Union and Feedlot accounting.
Mr. Johnston has a B.S., summa cum laude, in Computer Science, Math and Science and a Masters of Computer Science. He has been listed as one of the top 10 technology professionals in the industry and has been a featured speaker for the past 20 years. Randy is a monthly columnist for CPA Technology Advisor and has been featured and quoted frequently in accounting and computer press.
Rebecca is a partner in the St. Charles office of SmithAmundsen and a member of the firm’s Labor and Employment Practice Group where she focuses her practice on employee benefit compliance, administration, and litigation. Rebecca also counsels and represents employers in various matters arising under Federal and State employment laws, including wage and hour claims and audits, discrimination and retaliation claims, as well as contract disputes. Rebecca is licensed to practice in the State of Illinois and the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois.
During law school, Rebecca worked for Northern Illinois University’s General Counsel assisting with a variety of litigation matters including employment law issues such as discrimination, harassment claims, and union matters.
Prior to joining SmithAmundsen, Rebecca was an associate at another law firm and worked as a Human Resources Consultant. Her professional experience encompasses all areas of Human Resource Management, including 401(k) and other benefit auditing and administration, COBRA and HIPAA compliance, deferred compensation plans, writing and implementing company policies, recruiting, employee discipline and terminations, job descriptions and classifications, employee discrimination claims, ERISA fiduciary obligations, wage and hour claims and audits, labor and employee relations issues, as well as contract matters.
Rick Richardson is president of Richardson Media & Technologies LLC, a multi-media and strategic technology consulting company. Prior to forming his current company, he had a 28-year career in technology with Ernst & Young, the last twelve years of which he served as National Director of Technology. Rick has been named to the “Technology 100” – the annual honors list of the 100 key achievers in technology in America and honored by the American Institute of CPAs with two lifetime achievement awards for his contributions to the profession in the field of technology. He has been named as one of the “Top 100 Influential People in Accounting” by Accounting Today magazine. He is a sought after speaker around the world, providing his annual forecast of future technology trends to thousands of business executives, professionals, community leaders, educators and students.
As Principal of Garrett Consulting since 1988, Steven W. Garrett provides a broad range of talent management consulting services to a variety of organizations and professional service firms, as well as to individuals. His areas of expertise include:
- Leadership Development and Managerial Skills Training.
- Performance Coaching and Mentoring.
Employee Retention & Engagement, through his affiliation with Career Systems International:
- Behavioral Interview Training and Coaching of Interviewers.
- Design of Selection, Performance Management and Career Development Processes.
In addition to strong presentation, facilitation and coaching skills, Steve Garrett brings strengths in project leadership, instructional design, and business development. His corporate clients have included Archer Daniels Midland Company, Baxter Healthcare Corporation, Motorola, AC Nielsen, Harris Bank, Kellogg Company, W.W. Grainger and The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago.
Steve has also developed a specialty in serving public accounting firms, given his background in the field, including Pricewaterhouse Coopers, Arthur Andersen, Blackman Kallick and a number of small CPA firms nationwide.
Previously, Steve served as a Recruiting Coordinator for the Human resources Department of Amoco Corporation. He also held positions as Career Counselor with Indiana University’s Business Placement Office and as a Financial Auditor and Executive Search Consultant with Ernst & Young.
He earned his Masters in Business Administration Degree, with a concentration in Human Resources Management, from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. He received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting, Magna Cum Laude, from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
Executive Vice President & General Manager of Tax CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business. Consistently recognized as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in Accounting and a Top 40 Under 40 leader in the profession, Teresa Mackintosh is CCH’s Executive Vice President & General Manager of Tax. As the head of CCH’s largest business serving tax professionals with innovative and customer-focused solutions, Mackintosh leads CCH’s Tax Product Development, Tax Technology, Product Management, Sales and Tax Operations. An experienced leader with more than 16 years in the information, technology and software industries, Mackintosh has held numerous executive leadership positions in strategic marketing, product management and business development. At CCH, Mackintosh is driving the delivery of new and enhanced tax solutions, including cloud and mobile solutions, to ensure that CCH customers in firms of all sizes serve their clients best.
Tom joined Wolf & Company LLP in 2001 after working with a Big 4 firm for 4 years and has been a tax partner since 2007. He is a member of the firm's Manufacturing and Distribution Industry Group and leads the firm's International Tax Services practice. He works with a variety of closely held businesses. In addition to providing traditional taxation and accounting services, Tom represents clients before the Internal Revenue Service on income tax matters and assists businesses with tax issues associated with formation and start-up as well as disposition including due diligence support. His areas of expertise include corporate and individual taxation, fixed asset and inventory taxation, international tax and multi-state taxation issues. Tom also serves a number of clients with international affiliates and reporting issues. Tom actively participates in Ladder Up, a non-profit organization servicing low income taxpayers, and is licensed to practice before the U.S. Tax Court. He serves on the PKF North America International Business Development Committee. Tom received his B.B.A. in Accounting from Loyola University of Chicago, holds a law degree and an M.B.A. from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and an LLM degree from Chicago-Kent College of Law where he received the CALI Excellence for the Future Award in the following courses: Tax and Accounting Methods, Sales and Exchanges, Taxation of International Transactions, Advanced Partnership Taxation, State and Local Taxation, and Tax Practice and Procedure. An active member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Illinois CPA Society, and the Illinois Bar, Tom has authored numerous articles including Looking for Deductions? They Might be in Your Inventory, which appears on the Illinois Manufacturer’s Association Web Site and Changes to International Tax Landscape for the PKFI international tax bulletin.
Bio coming soon
William J. Hass, CTP, CEO, TeamWork Technologies of Northbrook, Illinois, is a leading turnaround consultant and advisor to both management and creditors. He has over 25 years of experience including turnaround, restructuring, dramatic change and distress consulting with over 100 business units and their leaders. He is Past Chairman of the Turnaround Management Association and Co-chair of the Chicago Chapter of TMA Continuing Education Committee. A former Big-5 consulting partner, Bill is a Certified Turnaround Professional (CTP) and focuses on turnaround strategies, failure prediction, strategic options analysis and valuation, corporate renewal, and dramatic change. Bill has led a variety of educational seminars and conducts research in the area of stock price trends, valuation and business failure. He serves as community leader for the new Illinois CPA Society's Center for Corporate Financial Leadership now serving 7 states and 32,000 CPAs.
Bill's turnaround and strategy clients have included both healthy and distressed Fortune 500 companies such as Allstate Insurance, Baxter International, LTV, National Steel, Continental Airlines, as well as a variety of smaller public and privately-held companies such as Jiffy Lube, Wheeling Pittsburgh Steel, Florida Steel, Cross & Trecker and Specialty Equipment. Bill's industry experience is broad based and includes retailers and consumer and industrial manufacturers such as: valve manufacturers, mini-mills, homebuilders, publishers, newspapers, automotive suppliers, machine tools and electronics.
Bill earned an MBA in Finance from the University of Chicago and a BS in Engineering Systems Analysis and Operations Research with Highest Honors from the University of Illinois-Chicago. He is a former director of the University of Illinois Alumni Association and Chairman of the College of Engineering Industrial Advisory Board. He is a director of the Association of Certified Turnaround Professionals. To learn more, click on www.teamworktechnologies.com.
Zachary Fortsch, CPA, joined RSM McGladrey in 1993 as a Manager in tax services. As a Managing Director, Mr.. Fortsch oversees the Great Lakes Office Non-Profit Industry Group.
Mr. Fortsch’s many projects and achievements include: assisting a non-profit client with the sale of their taxable subsidiary to a privately-held, billion-dollar organization; reviewing compensation agreements for compliance with intermediate sanction rules; making a comprehensive presentation to the Health Care Financial Management Association on topics of executive compensation, retirement plans, business tax issues, and public disclosure of their tax filings; and authoring frequent contributions to RSM McGladrey's client-focused newsletters.
Zachary has been in the accounting field since 1983. Prior to joining RSM McGladrey, he spent 10 years working at various accounting firms in the Chicago area. He is a Certified Public Accountant and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), Illinois CPA Society and Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA). Zachary serves on the Board of Directors, Executive Committee and acts as Treasurer for the Illinois Division of The American Cancer Society.
Mr.. Fortsch earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Illinois State University, Normal, IL in 1983 and his Masters of Science in Tax from DePaul University - Chicago, IL in 1989.