AICPA names 2019 'Outstanding Young CPA'

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The American Institute of CPAs named Elizabeth Pittelkow Kittner, head of finance for the International Legal Technology Association, as the 2019 recipient of the AICPA Outstanding Young CPA Award in honor of Maximo Mukelabai.

The award was presented to Pittelkow Kittner at the AICPA’s EDGE conference in Las Vegas on June 12, 2019, by Kimberly Ellison-Taylor, former chair of the AICPA's board of directors.

Now in its eighth year, the annual award recognizes a CPA under the age of 41 who "personifies a commitment to the profession as demonstrated through successful practices and involvement in and contributions to the interest of the accounting profession," according to the AICPA. The AICPA's award honors the legacy of Maximo Mukelabai, a member of the inaugural class of the AICPA Leadership Academy and the youngest chair of the North Carolina Association of CPAs board of directors, who passed away at age 36.

“Elizabeth has accomplished a great deal in her career, balancing impressive professional achievements with service to the profession and her community,” said Mark Koziel, executive vice president of firm services for the Association of International Certified Professional Accountants, in a statement. “Elizabeth truly exemplifies the values held by Maximo Mukelabai. Naming her as the 2019 AICPA Outstanding Young CPA Award recipient is a tribute to his legacy.”

Pittelkow Kittner is a member of the AICPA and Illinois CPA Society, volunteering at both the state and national levels. She currently serves as a member of the AICPA Governing Council and previously volunteered with the AICPA’s Business and Industry Executive Committee, Young Member Leadership Committee and EDGE conference planning committee. She is also the current treasurer of the Illinois CPA Society board of directors and serves as a continuing professional education instructor.

“When you are passionate about something, like your family or your profession, you put time into it, and you want to see it thrive,” stated Pittelkow Kittner. “I want to do what I can to help move the accounting profession forward. It is second nature for me to volunteer my time, whether it’s promoting ethics efforts or mentoring younger CPAs just starting their careers. Every CPA has the ability to make an impact on both the profession and their community. There are so many opportunities to volunteer, and I encourage CPAs who are starting their careers to volunteer in a wide range of roles as they seek to determine where their passion exists.”

Qualifications for the Outstanding Young CPA Award include:

  • Holding the CPA license and being between the ages of 22 and 40;
  • Encouraging students to pursue a career in accounting;
  • Volunteering in activities that advance the accounting profession; and
  • Participating in community-based organizations that improve people’s lives.

Candidates for the award submitted applications and details on their volunteer history, alongside professional reference forms from peers, employers and state CPA societies. A task force of young CPAs then reviews all the qualified nominees to determine a winner.

The application period for the 2020 Outstanding Young CPA Award will begin this summer. For more information, head to the AICPA's site here.

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