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Day in the Life of a CPA: Barbara Koenig, CPA

Feb 14, 2022

Financial Controller and HR Manager
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, LLC & Team Rahal, Inc.

 2020 Indy 500 win
 

L–R: Mike Lanigan (team owner), Takuma Sato (2020 Indy 500 Winner), Bobby Rahal (team owner) and Barbara Koenig celebrate their Indy 500 win 


A.M.: Wake up, shower, eat breakfast and catch up on the daily news.

A.M.: Time to take my dog Molly for a quick walk before leaving for work. We end up walking with a neighbor and their dog, so it takes longer than we thought.

7:45 A.M.: Arrive at the race shop. Check emails and schedule for the day.

8:30 A.M.: Budget meetings. Our fiscal year end is October 31, which is after the race season ends. After putting together the budget template and providing the year-end ledger details, I meet with each department head to help them begin to put together their assumptions and numbers for the next fiscal year budget. We budget separately for our IndyCar team, Sportcar team, BMW Classics program and BMW Parts program. Then we combine everything for a consolidated budget for the owners and upper management.

11 A.M.: Meet with outside benefits consultants to review our March 1 open enrollment information. Based on projected premium increases, we put together a cost analysis and proposal of company cost versus employee cost sharing of health and dental insurance benefits for the upcoming plan year for review.
The motorsports industry is really exciting and interesting. It’s always changing, so it keeps my interest. I have the opportunity to meet the most interesting people, and I don’t mean just race car drivers! The people who work in motorsports are some of the nicest people you will ever meet—genuine, caring and passionate about racing.
 Daytona
 

At the racetrack with colleagues Stephanie Johnson and Delaney Collier


1 P.M.: Meet with our insurance broker regarding the corporate liability and workers compensation insurance renewals.

1:30 P.M.: Review sponsor contracts so we can put together a projection of the 2022 sponsorship commitments for invoicing and cash flow. We also review what are called “deliverables,” which is what we agree to provide to our sponsors in return for their sponsorship. This might include things like tickets to race events, hospitality, driver appearances, show car appearances, signage, etc.

2:30 P.M.: Call with our bank to discuss the corporate line of credit. We are in the middle of building a new global headquarters in Zionsville and financing the FF&E purchases for the new building. We need to structure a line of credit to begin with that we can then roll into one large term loan once we are actually in the new location and have made all purchases.

3 P.M.: Catch up on emails, telephone calls, miscellaneous projects, etc. There are generally so many things to do. With both accounting and human resources on my plate, there is no end to the list of things to be done!

4:30 P.M.: Travel to the elementary school in Lebanon to participate in the United Way readUP program where I read with third grade students. The premise of the readUP program is that kids learn how to read in first and second grade and beginning in third grade they should be reading to learn. Since their reading skills in third grade are very important, we work with kids who need to improve their reading skills to get to the necessary levels.
Becoming a CPA allows you to go in so many different directions. It provides such a strong base of good financial and management skills that you can turn into anything! Get involved in many organizations and network, network, network!

6:30 P.M.: Home! Time to walk the dog again.

P.M.: Meet up with friends at the Salty Cowboy in Zionsville to decompress and catch up.

8:30 P.M.: When I get home from dinner, I call both of my daughters to check in and hear about their day.

P.M.: I have a couple of small business clients I work with, so I check in with them and go through my email to help me get a head start on the next day’s activities.
 
10 P.M.: Read before bed. I’m currently reading two books: “22 Talk SHIFTs: Tools to Transform Leadership in Business” and “Quit Like a Millionaire.”

10:30 P.M.: Lights out.

About Me

NAME: Barbara Koenig, CPA

JOB TITLE: 
Financial Controller and HR Manager

COMPANY:
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, LLC & Team Rahal, Inc.

JOB DESCRIPTION:
I am responsible for all financial aspects of our IndyCar team and our BMW sportscar team. I am also the human resources manager.

MOST INTERESTING THING ABOUT WHAT YOU DO:
The motorsports industry is really exciting and interesting. It’s always changing, so it keeps my interest. I have the opportunity to meet the most interesting people, and I don’t mean just race car drivers! The people who work in motorsports are some of the nicest people you will ever meet—genuine, caring and passionate about racing.

PREVIOUS POSITIONS:
I worked in public accounting for 15 years, as an administrator/controller in health care for 20 years, and I have had my own accounting and consulting firm for many years, working with other motorsports teams and small business clients.

ALMA MATER:
Purdue University
 Barb and her daughters
 

Visiting a winery with daughters Jessica and Kaitlin


When I'm Not at Work

FAMILY: Jessica and Kaitlin, my two grown daughters, several sisters with whom I love to travel, and great friends.

PETS: 
My 4-year-old American Fox Hound, Molly.

HOBBIES:
Traveling, visiting wineries and reading.

Advice for Students Considering the Profession

Becoming a CPA allows you to go in so many different directions. It provides such a strong base of good financial and management skills that you can turn into anything! Get involved in many organizations and network, network, network!

Advice for Young Pros Wanting to Advance in the Profession

Find a few good mentors, not only in the CPA world, who you can always call on for sound advice and guidance.

Do you think a day in your life would make a good addition to our series? Contact Katie Kirkton at kkirkton@incpas.org to find out how you can share your story.


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