Person of Interest: Charlene Rhinehart, CPA
Ms. Corporate America 2015, Founder, CEO Unlimited and 2015 Young Professional Leadership Award Winner
ICPAS Assistant Director, Member Outreach
In my role as Member Outreach Manager, I have the opportunity to meet so many accomplished, high-achieving young professionals. I caught five minutes with just one of them.
What sets you apart?
”I’ve always been a firm believer in stepping out of your safe zone and moving into your purpose zone. And that’s what pageants are to me. They enable me to impact my community in greater ways, network with talented women in different industries, and gain transferable skills that help me advance in my career. When I stumbled upon the Ms. Corporate America pageant, my eyes lit up. This isn’t your typical beauty pageant; it’s a business pageant.”
What issue most inspires you?
”I’d have to say diversity; it’s become so much more than a buzzword. Diversity stands as one of the greatest challenges corporations face. I want to help them design and implement diversity initiatives to attract and retain top talent. During my year of service as Ms. Corporate America, I’ll be traveling to different corporations and universities to help individuals develop their intercultural competencies and be their best in the workplace.”
What was your greatest ‘aha’ moment?
“When I set foot in financial services. I knew I wanted to work in an environment that focused on the double bottom line of profits and impact. When I got an offer to work in the Community Development Banking group in 2014, it was a dream come true. My first major project was working on the $100 Million Detroit Initiative, which was the most significant contribution made by a bank to a city.”
Do you have a role model?
My friends joke about how I have hundreds of role models in different industries. Each is an individual who doesn’t fit the traditional definition of an accountant, and who has created a unique career path based on their personal interests. It’s crucial that you identify individuals who are living without limits so that you can be motivated to live your dreams.