The AICPA has announced that Lindsay Stevenson, vice president of Finance & Tax at 1st Financial Bank USA, has received the 2017 AICPA Outstanding Young CPA Award in Honor of Maximo Mukelabai. The award was presented to Stevenson at the seventh annual EDGE Conference in New Orleans on Thursday.

The award looks to recognize professionals who go above and beyond their roles as CPAs, with particular attention to leadership and advocating the accounting profession. The award is named after Maximo Mukelabai, a graduate of the first AICPA Leadership Academy in 2009 and the youngest chair of the North Carolina Association of CPAs board of directors. The AICPA founded the award in 2011 after Mukelabai passed away at age 36.

“Lindsay is a talented individual whose time and energy have gone into numerous projects that have helped advance the CPA profession,” said Donna Salter, AICPA senior manager, Young Member Initiatives, per a statement. “Whether she is volunteering on one of the many AICPA or state society committees she serves on, or in her local community, Lindsay embodies the values the Maximo Mukelabai award represents and is an inspiration to peers.”

“It is an honor to receive this award created in Maximo’s memory,” stated Stevenson. “I’ve learned a great deal about leadership and the importance of volunteering from my peers at the AICPA Leadership Academy and by attending the EDGE Experience. You often have an opportunity to learn from people with tremendous experience in an informal and relaxed way. It feels like mentoring instead of training.”

In addition to being a member of the AICPA, the South Dakota Society of CPAS and the Arizona Society of CPAs, Stevenson serves as a member of the AICPA Young Member Leadership Committee, the AICPA Depository Institutions Expert Panel, and the AICPA Women’s Initiatives Executive Committee.

“I rarely feel more purpose than when I am giving my time to something greater than myself. Imagine a profession where every member is working to inspire the best version of themselves and every other accountant-- the possibilities for positive results are limitless and the value of volunteering is exponential,” Stevenson added.

In South Dakota, Stevenson acts as the chair of the Sioux City SCORE Chapter, which offers small businesses mentoring and development opportunities. She is also a member of the SDCPAS Ambassador Committee as well as their Non-Practice Advisory Council. At 1st Financial Bank, she also works with their Financial Literacy Education Outreach Program, which provides financial literacy education to students.

To be considered for the award, candidates submitted their volunteer history along with references from peers, employers and state CPA societies. A panel of young CPAs reviewed submissions and ultimately determined a winner.

Candidates for the Outstanding Young CPA Award are further reviewed on the following criteria:

  • Demonstrates passion and eagerness to encourage and pique students’ interest in accounting as a career
  • Contributes recommendations and best practices toward improving processes and/or activities
  • Performance in committee and/or other volunteer activities that relate to the engagement and advancement of the profession
  • Involvement in community-based organizations to improve the lives of citizens
  • Hold an active CPA license and be between the ages of 22 – 40.
Stevenson accepting the award in New Orleans on Thursday.
Stevenson accepting the award in New Orleans on Thursday.

For more information on the award, head to the AICPA's site here.

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