Ohio CPA Society names new Executive Board, Chairman

More than 500 CPA leaders met in Columbus last week for The Ohio Society of CPAs (OSCPA) Members Summit and Annual Meeting. At the event, OSCPA installed Robert Zunich, CPA/ABV, director of Barnes Wendling CPAs in Cleveland as the 2013-2014 chair of the OSCPA Executive Board.

“I’m committed to supporting OSCPA’s continued push for legislative action and making sure CPAs have a key role in discussions on issues shaping our state’s business environment,” Zunich said.

Michael Brandl, Ph.D., an economist and assistant clinical professor of finance at The Ohio State University, also addressed the group in a presentation that explored the economy at the state, national and international levels.

Mark LaPlace, CPA, director of tax services with GBQ Partners in Columbus was awarded the Gold Medal for Meritorious Service to the Accounting Profession. The award is given annually to a CPA who demonstrates superior leadership and contributions to the accounting profession.

A 30-year member of OSCPA, LaPlace has served as both chair of the Board (2000-2001) and vice president of the Executive Committee (1996-1998). He has also held volunteer leadership roles with AICPA, the Accountancy Board of Ohio and Ohio CPA/PAC.

With the award, LaPlace and his father, Bill LaPlace are the first father-son pair who have both won the Gold Medal. Bill LaPlace, a past president of OSCPA’s former Executive Committee, won the award in 1988.

“My father was the one who got me interested in this profession,” Mark LaPlace said. “So I take a lot of pride in being a second-generation Gold Medal winner.”

New Executive Board Members

OSCPA installed its new, 2013-14 Executive Board at the meeting. Brendan Fitzgerald, CPA, principal with Sustin, Bartell, Waldman & Fitzgerald Ltd. in Cleveland, assumed the position of immediate past chair. Phillip Wilson, CPA, principal and COO, Hill Barth & King LLC, Youngstown, continues as vice chair, finance.

Mark Van Benschoten, CPA, was announced as the new chair-elect. Van Benschoten is the director of not-for-profit services at Rea & Associates, Inc. in Dublin, Ohio. He has served on more than a dozen OSCPA boards and committees, including the Executive Board, Audit Committee, Foundation Communications Committee and Member Connections Advisory Council.

The following individuals were named to new, two-year terms on the Executive Board:

Additional Member Awards

OSCPA honored four additional CPAs for their exceptional contributions to the accounting profession:

OSCPA recognized both Scott Gill, CPA, MT and Tom Zaino, CPA, JD with Outstanding Member Volunteer awards for their dedication to the Society’s municipal tax reform efforts. Gill, tax manager at The Ohio State University, has extensive experience in both the public and private sectors. He has been a member of the Ohio Municipal Task Force since 2003 and OSCPA since 1986.

Zaino played a vital role in drafting legislation to overhaul Ohio’s complicated municipal income tax structure, educating legislators and testifying on behalf of two bills. Zaino is the founder and managing member of Zaino Hall & Farrin LLC. He is a former member of OSCPA’s Executive Board.

Sandra Richtermeyer, Ph.D., CPA, CMA received the Outstanding Ohio Accounting Educator award in recognition of her continued efforts to advance student learning. Currently a professor and chair of the Department of Accountancy at Xavier University, Richtermeyer has garnered several previous teaching accolades, including the 2011 Educator of the Year award from the American Women’s Society of CPAs. She has also held numerous leadership positions with several national accounting organizations.

John Bongorno, CPA, M.Acc. became just the second educator honored with OSCPA’s Outstanding Ohio Two-Year Accounting Educator award. Bongorno currently serves as assistant professor at Cuyahoga Community College and has more than 25 years of experience teaching students at two-year institutions. He has been a member of OSCPA’s Programs Committee since 2011 and was fundamental in organizing OSCPA’s ASPIRE! Diversity in Accounting event at Tri-C.