LEA Global announces first CEO, president's retirement

The Leading Edge Alliance (LEA Global) announced the appointment of Erica Ishida to the newly created position of CEO, to work with president Karen Kehl-Rose, who will retire at the end of the year.

Kehl-Rose, who has been in her role since the creation of LEA in 1999, will assist with the transition through June 2019. The CPA firm association currently has 226 members with more than 600 offices in 110 countries.

Ishida has more than 15 years of experience in organization design, change management and leadership development, and has worked in a variety of industries including professional services and technology, in addition to working as an advisor and coach to CEOs as a certified Leadership Development Coach. Most recently, Ishida led a strategic execution consulting firm she founded, which focused on developing leaders, especially women leaders.

“Erica’s skill set and experience will be on display as part of LEA’s training and coaching and best practices initiatives,” said LEA chairman Michael Newton in a statement. “She will lead and/or participate in member groups consisting of young professionals, young leaders, women leaders and newly minted managing partners.”

LEA Global’s annual revenue, on a combined basis, is more than $3 billion, Newton stated, and attributed the association’s growth to Kehl-Rose’s efforts over the years, along with LEA founder Gary Shamis.

“Karen’s commitment to quality, tirelessness and her ‘connection’ skills have set the tone for the organization,” Newton stated. “Erica’s role is to now move us forward in a different direction while building off the base that Karen forged in over 19 years as its president.”

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