The Accountants Club of America marked its 90th anniversary with a gala dinner in New York on Thursday night.
ACA president Robert Fligel kicked off the proceedings, pointing to the club’s long history in the accounting profession and in New York City. “This is going to be a pretty well behaved crowd,” he promised.
He introduced Neville Grusd, president of Merchant Financial Corporation, who amused the crowd with jokes. “There are four founding members here tonight who are founding members, but they couldn’t stand up,” he said.
He also related a series of accountant jokes drawn from CPA Trendlines’ “The Accountants’ (Bad) Joke Book,” such as “There are three kinds of accountants in the world: those that can count and those that cannot.”
Former AICPA chairs Stu Kessler and Olivia Kirtley handed out awards to three honorees: Joanne Barry, the executive director and CEO of the New York State Society of CPAs; Marilyn Pendergast, a managing director at UHY Advisors and former president of the NYSSCPA; and a posthumous award to the late Julie Floch, who was partner-in-charge of the Not-for-Profit Services Group at EisnerAmper LLP. Her husband accepted on her behalf.
“I am honored to receive this award, very much so since I am sharing this recognition with two women that have been role models for me during my time in this profession,” said Barry. “Marilyn Pendergast, who is one of our winners tonight, was my role model when I first started working at the Society all those years ago. At that time and today as well, I admired her for her drive and intellect, and ultimately for her definition of success, which is that competence is more important than gender.”
“Julie Floch’s legacy of leadership in the not-for-profit sector and her commitment to the profession and community provides an example for all of us, and we are deeply grateful for the opportunity and honor to have known her,” said Pendergast. “As executive director of the New York State Society of CPAs, Joanne Barry serves as a remarkable spokesperson for our profession and represents us wisely and well. When I became the first woman president of the New York State Society, I sang, ‘I am woman, hear me roar.’”
Fligel also introduced a lineup of past presidents of the Accountants Club of America, along with ACA secretary Elliott Hendler, before Gruso closed out the evening.
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