Abacus Worldwide, Miami, signed a letter of intent to merge with JHI as of Sept. 2020. The merger of the accounting and legal associations will bring together 125 legal and accounting member firms with 5,600 total staff and 236 offices in 56 countries. (Read the full story.)
Richard Law was hired as a managing director in the corporate value consulting practice at Grant Thornton, Chicago.

The Illinois CPA Society, Chicago, announced its board of directors who will serve from April 1, 2020 until March 31, 2021. The board of directors, and their organizations are: chairperson Dorri McWhorter, YWCA Metropolitan Chicago; vice chairperson Thomas Murtagh; secretary Mary Fuller, Shepard Schwartz & Harris; treasurer Jonathan Hauser; immediate past chairperson Geoffrey Harlow, Wipfli; and directors: John Bird, RSM US; Brian Blaha, Wipfli; Jennifer Cavanaugh, Grant Thornton; Stephen Ferrara, BDO USA; Jennifer Goettler, Heinold Banwart; Scott Hurwitz, Deloitte; Joshua Lance, Lance CPA Group; Enrique Lopez, Lopez and Company CPAs; Elizabeth Pittelkow Kittner, International Legal Technology Association; Deborah Rood, CNA Insurance; Seun Salami, Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America; Stella Marie Santos, Adelfia; Brian Stanko, Loyola University; and Mark Wolfgram, Bel Brands USA.

In other Illinois CPA Society news, the ICPAS announced the recipients of the 2020 outstanding leadership awards. The Lifetime Achievement Award was given to Elizabeth Murphy, professor emerita at DePaul University. Women to Watch awards were given in two categories: the Experienced Leader Award went to Carol Jessup, professor of accountancy at the University of Illinois; and the Emerging Leaders were Lauren Bruce, senior manager at Grant Thornton; and Hollis Hanson-Pollock, associate practice fellow, GASB, and audit manager at Crowe. The Lester H. McKeever Jr. Advancing Diversity Awards were also given in two categories: Outstanding Leader to Sandra Waller Shelton, KPMG Endowed Professor of Accountancy, director, internal audit education program, DePaul University; and emerging leader Reuel Brumell, private wealth consultant, Grant Thornton. The outstanding educator awards were given in two categories; the four-year college/university category award went to Michael Popowits, senior lecturer, department of accounting and director of student professional development, iLEAD, UIC Business; and for the two-year college/university category: Christine Wane, accounting professor and department coordinator at William Rainey Harper College. The Young Professional Leadership Award went to Curt Mastio, managing member, Founder’s CPA and adjunct instructor, Northwestern University; and the Time and Talent Public Service Volunteerism Award, honoring an organization, was given to Kutchins, Robbins & Diamond. The ICPAS Distinguished Service Awards were presented to: Linda Abernethy, RSM US, Governmental Executive Committee; Margaret Al-Qassas, MichaelSilver, Taxation Executive Committee; Tony Boras, Crowe, Governmental Report Review Committee; Scott Cosentine, Ashland Partners & Co., Audit and Assurance Services Committee; Beth Cwik, Huck Bouma, Taxation - Estate, Gift and Trust Committee; Alison Fetzer, ORBA, Not-for-Profit Organizations Committee; Karen Fleming, BKD CPAs & Advisors, Taxation - Estate, Gift and Trust Committee; Robert Hedrick, Hedrick Systems Group, Taxation - Practice and Procedures Committee; Mark Heroux, Baker Tilly Virchow Krause, Taxation - Practice and Procedures Committee; Mark Klesman, Klesman & Co., Peer Review Report Acceptance Committee; Ellen Landgraf, Loyola University Chicago, Ethics Committee; Monty Meyer, Monty Meyer CPA & Associates, Taxation - Practice and Procedures Committee; Kim Meyer, Hudgens & Meyer, Peer Review Report Acceptance Committee; Brittany Okossi, KPMG, Mary T. Washington Wylie Alumni Advisory Group; Linda Rapacz, Linda C. Rapacz CPA, Peer Review Report Acceptance Committee; Jonathan Strouse, Harrison & Held, Taxation - Practice and Procedures Committee; and Andrew VanSingel, Internal Revenue Service, Taxation - Practice and Procedures Committee.
Lewis Greenwald was hired as a managing director in the international tax practice at Alvarez & Marsal Taxand, New York and Miami.

Michael Sandnes was hired as a director in the financial advisory services group at EisnerAmper, New York.
Brian Eaton (pictured), RSM South Africa CEO, was elected chairperson of the RSM International Board. Eaton, who has been a member of the RSM International Board since 2009, began his tenure April 1 and succeeds existing chairperson Mike Kirley, who will be retiring. In other firm news: Tom Ferreira, RSM US northeast market leader, was appointed to serve on the board for a three-year term.
Whitley Penn building
Whitley Penn was recognized as one of the 2020 Best Places for Working Parents in Fort Worth by local public-private partnership Best Place 4 Kids.