The California Society of CPAs has honored seven CPAs with its Women to Watch Awards at its recent Women's Leadership Forum here.

The seven were recognized for making significant contributions to the accounting profession and for demonstrating characteristics that enable them to become leaders in the profession.

As a female pioneer in the accounting profession, Glenda Bayless of Apple Valley, Calif., accepted the CalCPA Trailblazer Award. Also recognized as experienced leaders were Carol Suruki of Los Angeles, Leslie Dawson of Walnut Creek and Nanette Lee Miller of San Francisco. Candace Vaughn of Palo Alto, Cathy Hyodo of Yorba Linda and Karen Burns of Pleasanton were named emerging leaders. All are CPAs.

"These seven women provide excellent examples of leadership, especially for females entering the accounting profession," said CalCPA CEO Loretta Doon in a statement. "Glenda Bayless, in particular, is a model for other women in this field. When she became a CPA in 1963, only 1 percent of CPAs were women. Now women comprise 60 percent of the profession."

CalCPA selected the experienced and emerging leader recipients in partnership with the American Institute of CPAs, AICPA's Women's Initiatives Executive Committee, and Robert Half International. The Trailblazer Award was presented solely by CalCPA.

Glenda Bayless is CEO of Bayless Accountancy Corporation in Apple Valley. She also teaches part time at various universities in Southern California and is chairman of the board for Inland Community Bank. She has been a member of CalCPA and the AICPA for the past 47 years, and has served on the boards of several community groups and non profits during her career.

Carol Suruki is a partner and the performance management initiative leader at Moss Adams LLP in Woodland Hills. She is an original member of the firm's women's initiative task force. Her other activities include serving on the board of the City of Hope Women's Council Board.

Leslie Dawson is a partner at Glenn & Dawson LLP in Walnut Creek. She serves as president of Habitat for Humanity, is on the board of directors of Kid's Turn and is the current chairman of the Walnut Creek Chamber of Commerce.

Nanette Lee Miller is the board chairman at Stonefield Josephson in San Francisco. She has served as vice president, treasurer or board member for the Bay Area Career Woman, Golden Gate Business Association and Women's Forum West. She is also a founding board member and treasurer of Hearth Homes and is the board chairman and treasurer of Most Holy Redeemer Aids Support Group.

Candace Vaughn is a senior manager in the assurance and advisory department at Frank, Rimerman LLP in Palo Alto. She is the financial coach to six entities competing in the 2009 Cleantech Open, a clean-technology business competition.

Cathy Hyodo is an audit partner at Grant Thornton LLP in Los Angeles. She is on the board of the University of Southern California Accounting Circle and works with high school students through Junior Achievement.

Karen Burns is an audit partner at Sensiba San Filippo in Pleasanton. Burns provides mentorship for students at San Jose State and Santa Clara University. She is treasurer of Niles Rotary in Fremont and on the board of StarStruck Theatre.

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