AICPA Announces Graduates of 2013 Leadership Academy 

Published October 29, 2013

Contact: James Schiavone, 212-596-6119,

NEW YORK (Oct. 29, 2013)
 - The American Institute of CPAs today announced the 2013 Leadership Academy graduating class. Thirty-seven rising stars in the profession learned to apply cutting-edge leadership theory to handle complex management challenges during the intensive four day program held earlier this month in Durham, N.C.

The AICPA Leadership Academy was established in 2009 to inspire, nurture and empower the next generation of CPA leaders by providing them with advanced leadership training, access to well-connected professional networks and opportunities to exercise leadership within the profession.

“The opportunity to connect with the current and future leaders of our profession at the Leadership Academy generated an energy that will emanate from the participants as we continue to develop our careers,” said Elizabeth Pittelkow, CPA, CGMA, CITP, senior accounting manager at ArrowStream and a 2013 AICPA Leadership Academy graduate. “The experience challenged me to think about the future of our accounting profession and helped nurture the skills and behaviors I will need to help make that future possible.”

This year’s class learned leadership and strategic planning techniques from some of the profession’s most influential leaders, including Barry Melancon, CPA, CGMA, the Institute’s president and CEO, AICPA Chairman (2012-2013) Richard Caturano, CPA, CGMA,  Janice Maiman, AICPA senior vice president, communications, media, news and professional pathways and Jeannie Patton vice president, academics, professional pathways and inclusion.

“The Leadership Academy helped me realize what my strengths are as a leader and taught me how to use them in a more purposeful manner,” said Joe Navarro, Business Manager – City of Bakersfield Recreation and Parks and a 2013 Leadership Academy Graduate. “The time management skills I acquired help make the eight hours I put into my job each day more valuable. Most importantly, the personal branding statement I drafted has made me more transparent and accountable to the greatest stakeholder in my life – myself.”  

The AICPA selected the members of the 2013 Leadership Academy class from more than 120 candidates recommended by their employers, state CPA societies or both. Before selecting the 2013 class, the AICPA reviewed each submission, including a statement provided by the candidate explaining why participating in the Leadership Academy would be important to them personally.

“Leadership Academy graduates emerge from the program poised to take the next step in their career,” said Caturano. “I am extremely impressed by this talented group of young CPAs and I am confident they will use the lessons and skills they learned at the Leadership Academy to make a positive impact on the profession.”
 Details for the 2014 Leadership Academy will be available online in early 2014.

The full 2013 Leadership Academy class is below:

·        Mohamad Al-kawafha, PKF, Houston, TX

·        Chad Allen, Acord Cox & Company, Lenexa, KS

·        Tracy M. Allen, AKT LLP, Lake Oswego, OR

·        Victor A. Amaya, ClearPath Accountants LLC, Littleton, CO

·        Jaclyn T. Badeau, TempurSealy International, Inc., Lexington, KY

·        Jennifer J. Brown, GSC Agribusiness, Carroll, IA

·        Tessa Carr, Arnett Foster Toothman PLLC, Charleston, WV

·        Erik M. Causey, KPMG LLP, Washington, DC

·        Harris Darver, McGregor & Company LLP, Columbia, SC

·        Christine DeAngelis, Cobalt Benefits Group, LLC, Exeter, NH

·       Michelle B. Dooley, ThyssenKrupp Steel USA, Calvert AL

·       David M. Finklang, Anders CPAs + Advisors, St. Louis, MO

·       Kathryn M. Fletcher, Draffin & Tucker LLP, Atlanta, GA

·       Misty L. Geer, Halliburton Energy Services, Lafayette, LA

·       Amber K. Goering, Amber K. Goering, CPA, P.A., Olathe, KS

·       Dena Jackson Lester Harrison, Protiviti, Orlando, FL

·         Jason H. Hunter, Mantyla McReyolds, Salt Lake City, UT

·         Curtis M. Johnson, Mutual of Omaha, Omaha, NE

·         Brett J. Jordan, Russell Investments, Seattle, WA

·         Heather N. Lenardson, Lenhart, Mason & Associates LLC, Casper, WY

·         Rachael K. Lloyd, Emdeon, Inc., Nashville, TN

·         Satyasomeswar Maruvada, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, Raleigh, NC

·         Elizabeth N. Mason, Adventurous Turtle, Phoenix, AZ

·         Joe L. Navarro, City of Bakersfield, Bakersfield, CA

·         Joshua Norris, Corkern & Norris PLLC, Jackson, MS

·         Elizabeth S. Pittelkow, ArrowStream, Inc., Chicago, IL

·         Iralma Pozo, Schall & Ashenfarb, New York, NY

·         Craig (Toby) S. Ralston, StoneTurn Group, Boston, MA

·         Joseph M. Rugger, Jonesboro Prosthetic & Orthotic Lab, Jonesboro, AR

·         Kala O. Sharp, ONEOK, Inc. and ONEOK Partners L.P., Tulsa, OK

·         Kelly M. Sics, Wisconsin Dental Association, West Allis, WI

·         Scott Smith, Smith, Kunz & Associates PLLC, Rexburg, ID

·         Justin Thomsen, Muckel Anderson CPAs, Reno, NV

·         Jeff W. Wilson II, The WII Group, LLC, Clinton, MD

·         Jayme Woehl, Array Services Group, Inc. Sartell, MN

·         Mary Yeager, University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH

·         David Zuidema, Dennen Steel Corporation, Grand Rapids, MI


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