AMELIA ISLAND, Fla. (October 21, 2018) – The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) is pleased to announce that Lester H. McKeever Jr., CPA, is the recipient of the 2018 AICPA Gold Medal Award of Distinction.
The Gold Medal is the highest honor granted by the AICPA. Since 1944, it has been bestowed upon CPAs whose influence on the accounting profession has been especially notable. Lewis Sharpstone, CPA, CGMA, a member of the awards committee, presented McKeever with the award today at the fall meeting of AICPA’s governing Council.
“Mr. McKeever rose from working part time for the nation’s first female African-American CPA to working to advance diversity within the profession on a national level and in his home state of Illinois,” said Sharpstone. “He serves as an example of the impact CPAs can make on their community, the profession and their colleagues.”
McKeever has served as chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, chair of United Way Chicago, chair of the Chicago Urban league and board treasurer of the University of Illinois.
For his more than 25 years of volunteer service to the Illinois CPA Society (ICPAS), McKeever has been recognized with their Lifetime Achievement Award. In 2016, ICPAS renamed their awards for members working to advance diversity in the profession after McKeever. His volunteerism at the national level has included terms on the AICPA’s Small Business and Minority Business Development Committees.
A founding member of the CPA Endowment Fund of Illinois, McKeever has paved the way for numerous African-Americans and other underrepresented minorities interested in pursuing a career as a CPA.
McKeever is a member of the Chicago Business Hall of Fame, and the Chicago Urban League created the Lester H. McKeever Jr. Individual Service Award in his honor in 2016. He is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and earned his law degree from the Chicago-Kent College of Law at the Illinois Institute of Technology.
A list of previous recipients is available on AICPA’s website.