Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

The Last Word

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

The Last Word

Article excerpt

I majored in accounting because I wanted to do something in business but didn't know what--and I figured an accounting degree would give me more options in whatever I chose to do. The best thing about public accounting is the chance to communicate with and help a variety of people instead of just being behind a computer.

I started my public accounting career at a Big Four firm, but I wanted to be in town more than that position allowed. I was referred to Anderson ZurMuehlen & Co. PC (AZ), a regional firm located primarily in Montana, by a college acquaintance. Working at AZ allowed me to get involved with my community, in things such as Operation CPA, the Montana State Society's Financial Literacy program for deployed soldiers and their families. My father has been in the National Guard all my life; he's a command sergeant major. So I have a very personal tie. It's not our parents' war any more; it's our brothers and sisters and loved ones who are on the battlefield. At one Operation CPA meeting we provided a briefing for 200 soldiers and their families: We gave them tax and financial information, a summary of financial issues to think about--such as getting a power of attorney--and lists of CPAs who are involved in the program and willing to give advice at reduced cost.

I sat for the CPA exam the day before I graduated and passed the first time. It would have been extremely difficult for me to study for it after I started working.

I enjoy working in public accounting. I've worked in various areas, but my primary specialty is construction--home and commercial builders. …

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