2016 Most Powerful Women in Accounting

Women are increasingly attaining the reins of power in accounting firms, accounting for about 20 percent of firm partners. This is still not enough, according to thought leaders like Amy Vetter, CPA, who notes that women make up more than half of the overall workforce, so their representation in leadership is too low. Still, it is an improvement over a decade or two ago.

In just the last couple of years, two Big Four firms have appointed female CEOs: Cathy Engelbert at Deloitte, and Lynne Doughtie at KPMG. And as women continue to expand their leadership roles in firms of all sizes, as well as at technology vendors, in consulting, public administration and accounting education, they will increasingly draw more women into partner and manager positions, shaping the profession significantly into the future.

Through the Most Powerful Women in Accounting awards, CPA Practice Advisor celebrates the increasing presence of women at the highest positions in accounting firms and organizations that oversee the profession, and recognizes those who have had the most impact. Nominations were open to the public on CPA Practice Advisor’s website www.CPAPracticeAdvisor.com, and the final selection of this year’s recipients was determined by the publication’s editorial staff and advisory board.

"These leaders are setting new standards for professionalism within accounting, and are shaping the profession through their work as partners, mentors, innovators and thought leaders," said Gail Perry, Editor-in-Chief of CPA Practice Advisor. "I am honored to have the opportunity to work alongside them, and CPA Practice Advisor will continue to chronicle their exceptional progress."  

The awards were announced and presented at the QBConnect Conference at the San Jose Conference Center, held October 24-26 in San Jose, CA. 

The 2016 Most Powerful Women in Accounting are:

Gail Perry, CPA, has also been honored with the award this year. As Editor-in-Chief of CPA Practice Advisor, Gail oversees the day-to-day operations of the publication and digital resource, and serves as liaison to the professional community.

In addition to this year's Most Powerful Women, CPA Practice Advisor also recognizes the significant impact of several women on the accounting profession. These "Larger Than Life" professionals are:

  • Lynne Doughtie
  • Cathy Engelbert
  • Mary Jo White
  • Elizabeth Warren