An open white door between two closed yellow doors.

Advisory group formed to support development of national strategy to address CPA talent shortage

The national strategy initiative will include extensive focus groups and forums around the country

NEW YORK (July 31, 2023) – The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) today announced the formation of an advisory group representing a broad spectrum of the accounting profession that will help shape a national strategy to address the profession’s talent shortage, including accounting students who go on to obtain a CPA license.

The National Pipeline Advisory Group’s work is part of a multi-pronged approach that includes an intensive effort to use technology, surveys and in-person forums to solicit insights and input from a diverse array of groups around the country.

The advisory group includes members who represent a range of perspectives, experiences, and constituencies, including state CPA societies, accounting firms of various sizes, state boards of accountancy, educators and business and industry. The group also reflects a blend of small, medium, and large states from across the nation.

The advisory group will be chaired by Lexy Kessler, CPA, CGMA, mid-Atlantic regional leader for Aprio and a board member of the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants, a global organization jointly formed by the AICPA and The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA).

ConvergenceCoaching LLC, will facilitate the collaborative effort. Jennifer Wilson of ConvergenceCoaching will be the group’s lead facilitator and will be supported by other members of her team. ConvergenceCoaching is a national leadership and management consulting firm that has worked extensively on accounting-related projects in leadership development, change management, and data analysis.

“The slowdown in young adults choosing accounting as a career is a collective problem for the CPA profession and requires a collective and inclusive solution,” said Susan Coffey, the AICPA’s CEO of public accounting and executive sponsor of the initiative. “We want to make sure we have a broad range of viewpoints and perspectives to help define the profession’s pipeline strategy moving forward. This deep, capable, and experienced group will play a critical role in guiding that conversation and subsequent call to action.”

Members of the advisory group are:

  • Jeannine Birmingham, CPA, CAE, CEO, Alabama Society of CPAs
  • Ken Bouyer, CIA, EY Americas DEI recruiting leader and member of the AICPA National Commission on Diversity & Inclusion
  • Susan Coffey, CPA, CGMA, CEO of Public Accounting, AICPA
  • Daniel J. Dustin, CPA, Vice President of State Relations, National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA)
  • Joe Falbo, CPA, CGMA, Partner at Szymkowiak & Associates CPAs, PC, and past president of the New York State Society of CPAs
  • Jonathan Hauser, CPA, Partner at KPMG and chair of the Illinois CPA Society
  • Angela Ho, CPA, CGMA, Chief Compliance Officer, OceanFirst Bank
  • Kathy Johnson, CPA, CFF, CGMA, Vice President, JS Held, adjunct professor, California State University, San Bernadino and past chair, California Society of CPAs
  • Lori Kaiser, CPA, CGMA, Founder and CEO of Kaiser Consulting, LLC and past chair, Ohio Society of CPAs
  • Lexy Kessler, CPA, CGMA, Mid-Atlantic Regional Leader, Aprio and board member, Association of International Certified Professional Accountants
  • Elizabeth (Betsy) Krisher, CPA, CEO/Chairman, Maher Duessel CPAs and president of the Pennsylvania Institute of CPAs board
  • Allen Lloyd, CAE, Executive Director, Montana Society of CPAs
  • Tom Neill, CPA (retired), Uniform Accountancy Act committee chair
  • Michelle F. Randall, CPA, CGMA, Accounting Professor, Schoolcraft College and chair of the Michigan Association of CPAs
  • Jodi Ann Ray, CAE, President and CEO, Texas Society of CPAs
  • Marcus Rayner, Managing Director, U.S. Public Policy at PwC
  • Rick Reisig, CPA, Principal, Pinion, LLC, and board chairman, NASBA
  • Kimberly Scott, CAE, President and CEO, Washington Society of CPAs
  • Lindsay Stevenson, CPA, CGMA, Chief Transformation Officer, BPM and board member, Association of International Certified Professional Accountants
  • Mark Taylor, CPA, Director, University of South Florida’s Lynn Pippenger School of Accountancy and 2023-24 president, American Accounting Association
  • Emily Walker, CAE, Vice President, Advocacy, Virginia Society of CPAs
  • Shelly Weir, President and CEO, Florida Institute of CPAs

The advisory group began meeting this month and will report on its progress at the AICPA’s Fall Council meeting in October. A resolution passed by AICPA Council members in May called for a collaborative process resulting in a research-driven national pipeline strategy that, among other things, addresses the image of the profession as well as educational and experience requirements, and outlines short and long-term actions that address the profession’s human capital needs. The Council resolution affirmed a commitment to preserving mobility for CPAs, a critical element of the system of state licensure allowing CPAs to practice across licensing jurisdictions.