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Celebrating CPA Excellence

Jun 4, 2019
Outstanding members and successful Exam candidates honored at CPA Celebration

The Indiana CPA Society recently recognized CPAs who are advancing their profession, organizations and communities, as well as 80 successful Exam candidates. More than 450 guests attended to celebrate with them at the Indiana Roof Ballroom on May 10. Congratulations to the following 14 winners in our eight award categories. If you know someone who would be a good fit for one of these awards, be sure to nominate them when nominations open in October at

2019 CPA Celebration Awards 

Michael D. Barton, CPA
Audit Manager – Petrow Kane Leemhuis, PC

INCPAS member since 2013

Michael Barton is the youngest CPA to be appointed to the Indiana Board of Accountancy, and also the youngest one to chair a meeting. He was appointed by now Vice President Mike Pence in 2016 and was reappointed in 2018 by Gov. Eric Holcomb. He is a member of the AICPA’s State Board Committee. He serves as an INCPAS CPA Advocate and on the Young Pros Leadership Academy, and previously served as a Campus Presenter, manager for the CPA Center of Excellence® Online Community and member of the Emerging Leaders Alliance.

2019 CPA Celebration at the Indiana Roof Ballroom

Trevor K. Gregory, CPA
Manager – PwC
INCPAS member since 2012

Trevor Gregory is actively involved with his firm’s diversity and inclusion initiatives. As a manager, he represents minorities in staffing, performance and compensation discussions to ensure there are no blind spots in the organization, and he encourages younger staff to get involved with INCPAS diversity programs. He serves on an advisory committee for PwC, through which he promotes diversity and inclusion to leaders of its national audit practice. He further helps with recruitment efforts in Indiana, with a focus on Indiana University where he serves as a mentor and judge for the Diversity Case Study Competition. He is a former INCPAS Scholar mentor and attended the first INCPAS Diversity Summit.

Sarah L. Hunter, CPA
Supervisor – Rodefer Moss & Co., PLLC
INCPAS member since 2013

Sarah Hunter has been involved with her church, American Heart Association walk, Boys & Girls Club, Choices for Women, Habitat for Humanity and Silver Heights Camp & Retreat Center summer camp for low-income children. She volunteers with Junior Achievement and teaches a five-week class on financial skills to students at local elementary schools each year. She also involves her family in her community service—they volunteer together at a local nursing home to visit with residents and so her daughter can learn the importance of serving others.

Daniel J. Smogor, CPA, CGMA
Tax Partner – Kruggel Lawton CPAs
INCPAS member since 1985

Dan Smogor has served in leadership and governance roles for many community organizations, often multiple at the same time. He has been involved with The Community Foundation of St. Joseph County, Downtown South Bend Inc., Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, Leadership – South Bend/Mishawaka, Ronald McDonald House Charities of Michiana, The South Bend Regional Chamber of Commerce, The Studebaker National Museum and The Summit Club. INCPAS involvement includes the Federal Taxation Committee and Taxation Committee.

Barry W. Wertz, CPA
Founder & Partner – Wertz & Co., P.C., CPAs
INCPAS member since 1977

Barry Wertz is president of his own firm and a former adjunct accounting faculty member at Indiana University South Bend and Southwestern Michigan College. He is actively involved in the Mishawaka community, with current and previous involvement in Boy Scouts, Breakfast Optimist Club, Business Association, Cub Scouts, Education Foundation, Little League Baseball, Packard Club, Pioneer Car Club, Pottawatomi Zoological Society, Preservation of the Res, School City of Mishawaka Collaborating Committee and Willow Creek United Methodist Church.

Lemler Group, LLC
INCPAS member since 2002

David W. Lemler, CPA, CGMA, and his wife, Suzanne, are owners of Lemler Group, LLC. Their firm offers financial statement services to associations, churches, cooperatives, educational program, foundations, Head Start programs, homeowner associations, Housing and Urban Development Properties (HUD), Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Properties (LIHTC), not-for-profit organizations, rural development properties, and safe haven/safe place programs. They not only strive to best serve those clients, but also they strive to improve the profession as a whole. They host a free Live2Lead simulcast each year and invite both clients and colleagues to learn leadership tips they can apply in their own organizations. They also host a CPA Day of Service event at Pack Away Hunger and invite other small firms, solo practitioners and accounting students to join them. Further, they support diversity in the talent pipeline and recently hired an INCPAS Scholar alum.

Brent W. Barton, CPA
Tax Manager – CliftonLarsonAllen LLP
INCPAS member since 2012

Brent Barton makes recruitment and retention a priority. He developed a “Career Building Rotation” program for younger staff, leads a team of “campus champions” dedicated to improving the campus recruiting model, and developed an internship program. He is the local lead for a new business line initiative to sell telecom auditing services, worked with a team to develop a new presentation on tax reform for internal and external use, and is developing a pilot program to onboard new clients. Community involvement includes IUPUI student mentoring, working with IUPUI faculty to develop the accounting department curriculum, and assisting the Irvington Development Organization with community activities and fundraisers.

Ashley N. Christie, CPA
Director of Real Estate Tax Services – Katz Sapper & Miller, LLP
INCPAS member since 2011

Ashley Christie aims to build well-rounded tax professionals and client advisors. In 2015, she established workgroups for staff to better communicate technical information to clients, such as their review comments and aspects of the Internal Revenue Code. She also identified the need for enhanced technical and soft skills, and worked with several colleagues to create KSM’s Tax Academy. Community involvement includes the finance committee for Dress for Success Indianapolis, treasurer of National Board for Pass the Torch for Women, member of Indy Commercial Real Estate Women (Indy CREW), and volunteer with Meals on Wheels of Central Indiana and Girls Inc. of Greater Indianapolis.

Christina M. Devine, CPA
Owner – Devine CPA & Co.
INCPAS member since 2012

Christina Devine opened her own firm in 2018, with a focus on helping small business owners and assisting nonprofits. She also has been working with elected officials to get a bill passed that would allow late filing relief for nonprofits with their property tax exemptions. She won a “Top 10 Under 40” award in 2018 from a young professional’s group in West Lafayette. Additional community involvement includes serving as treasurer for National Alliance of Mental Illness of West Central Indiana and Natalie’s Second Chance.

Amy M. Northard, CPA
Owner – Amy Northard, CPA
INCPAS member since 2010

Amy Northard runs her own virtual CPA firm and is “The Accountant for Creatives®,” specializing in working with creative small business owners. Over the last six years, her firm has gone completely paperless and adopted tools like digital tax organizers to make the tax process easier on her clients. Further, she strives to make her employees’ lives better by letting them know they are valued and offering flexibility—including 12 Fridays off in the summer for those who work extended hours during tax season. Additional community involvement includes providing content to The Blog Societies and sharing free education to small business owners on taxes and bookkeeping.

Annmarie Novotney, CPA, MBA
Audit Senior Manager – Blue & Co., LLC.
INCPAS member since 2012

Annmarie Novotney specializes in providing assurance and consulting services to not-for-profit organizations. Since first starting as an intern, in nine years she has risen to senior manager and now focuses on growing Blue & Co.’s nonprofit niche. She strives to be a positive example of a successful female leader for others in her office and firm. INCPAS involvement includes the INCPAS Emerging Leaders Alliance. Additional community involvement includes serving as a mentor for Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southern Indiana, Board Treasurer for Susan G. Komen Central Indiana and as a member of Executive Women in Finance.

Kevin E. Huston, CPA
Associate Professor of Accounting & Finance – Marian University
INCPAS member since 1984

Kevin Huston teaches financial and managerial accounting, managerial finance and auditing at the Clark H. Byrum School of Business. He recently pioneered a new curriculum on integrated reporting, in which his students create a report for the university and present it to the Board of Trustees. INCPAS involvement includes the Advocacy Task Force, CPA Advocate, CPA Center of Excellence® Online Beta Forum Community, Educational Foundation Board, Educator Practitioner Symposium Group, Educators Conference Project Team, High School Ambassadors, Indiana CPA-PAC Trustees and Leadership Cabinet. In addition to serving on many internal Marian University initiatives and committees, his external community involvement includes the American Diabetes Association – Indiana Affiliate, Indiana Financial Literacy Coalition and consultant to Indiana State Board of Accounting on continuing professional education rules.

Robert M. Jennings Jr., CPA, CFP, EA
President – Jennings Seminars and Presenter – TaxSpeaker

Bob Jennings specializes in complex returns for high-income individuals and businesses, as well as consultation services on business formation, LLC conversions, like-kind exchanges and special tax elections for compliance and tax-reduction strategies. In addition, he is the president and a presenter for TaxSpeaker, which hosts finance and technology seminars in all 50 states, Canada, the Caribbean and Iceland. INCPAS involvement includes the AICPA Committee and Indiana Firm Day.

Thaddeus B. Zaleski
Tax Consultant & Former Partner – Dauby O’Connor & Zaleski, LLC
INCPAS member since 1984

Ted Zaleski has more than 50 years of experience in public accounting. In 1988, he joined a two-man firm owned by Steve Dauby and Sean O’Connor and formed Dauby O’Connor & Zaleski, LLC (DOZ). Today, DOZ is a nationally-recognized leader in the affordable housing and community development arenas with clients in 46 states and 200 employees. INCPAS involvement includes AICPA Committee, Board of Directors, CPA Center of Excellence® Online Beta Forum Community, Ethics Committee, Indiana Department of Revenue Project Team, Leadership Cabinet, Member Services Committee, Member Needs Assessment Committee, Personnel Committee, Public Relations Committee, Real Estate Committee, School Initiatives Project Team, and State/Local Taxation Committee.