Reznick Group expands tax practice with 9 senior hires

 In Reznick, senior tax manager, Tax Principal

Reznick Group Tysons Corner Managing Principal Alex Castelli has announced that Fred Hutchison is among six principals and three senior managers who have joined the firm. Reznick Group has more than 500 professionals in the Washington, DC area and ranks as the fifth largest firm in the region.

“Our tax practice expansion plan calls for the extension of our services to corporate clients,” Castelli said. “This significant acquisition of talent allows us to provide the highest caliber of experience and specialization in the areas of corporate and international tax to clients locally and nationwide.”

Principals Fred Hutchison, Pete Gutshall, Robert Jennings, Hicham El Ouardighi, Ernie Sanders, John Sipe and Senior Managers Elizabeth Simmons, Kathleen Jeannin and Chris Mack have extensive high-level experience with corporate, international and federal, state and local tax, in addition to, audit/accounting and consulting experience. All have Big Four experience, SEC experience and will assist the firm in developing new business in their areas of specialization for both privately and publicly-held companies.

“We were immediately attracted by the national platform and resources of Reznick Group,” said new Principal Fred Hutchison. “We are so pleased to be part of this firm and to have the opportunity to contribute to its local and national tax growth plan.”

Fred Hutchison, CPA

Hutchison is a CPA specializing in providing corporate and pass-thru entity tax services. Hutchison has over 38 years of tax experience in public accounting. He is a retired tax partner (1982) with Ernst & Young, LLP (E&Y) leaving in December 2001 to join Kaiser Scherer & Schlegel, PLLC (KSS).

While with KSS and E&Y, he structured and assisted clients with corporate and individual tax planning involving corporate mergers, acquisitions, reorganizations, international issues, accounting method issues and state tax planning. His client base included S-corporations, research and development ventures, multinational corporations, entrepreneurial service corporations and individuals. Hutchison also provides leadership to our corporate tax group for services to public companies, primarily dealing with Financial Statement presentation for FAS 109, 123R and FIN 48.

Hutchison has a bachelor’s degree from The American University and has been involved in the local business and professional community for many years. He is the past president of the Fairfax Symphony Orchestra, past executive director of the Northern Virginia Chapter of the American Heart Association and a former member of the executive committee of the Northern Virginia Community Foundation, Treasurer for the Annual Welfare Institute, as well as active in other local charitable organizations.

Pete Gutshall, CPA

Gutshall has more than 16 years of corporate tax experience focusing on public companies in a variety of industries including technology and retail. Prior to joining Reznick Group, Gutshall was with Kaiser Scherer & Schlegel (KSS) since February of 2001. His background includes several years of Big Four accounting experience with a strong background in accounting methods, mergers and acquisitions, and FAS 109 and FIN 48 accounting. He began his career in private industry as a corporate controller for a $30M retail chain before embarking on a career in public accounting.

Gutshall is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountant (AICPA) and the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA). He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Florida.

Robert Jennings, CPA

Jennings specializes in corporate and international tax services with a focus on the technology, manufacturing and distribution, software and pharmaceutical industries. Jennings has nearly 18 years of experience in both public accounting and private industry. Prior to joining Reznick Group, Jennings was with Kaiser Scherer, and Schlegel since 2006 after serving as global director of taxes for a publicly-traded multinational enterprise.

As the leader of the firm’s international tax services practice, Jennings is experienced in the planning, development, execution and leadership of corporate finance strategies, systems, controls and transactions for complex business organizations operating in diverse industries in both domestic and international markets. He has a comprehensive knowledge and extensive experience in international tax strategies, plans, transactions, controls, reporting systems, and compliance. Jennings is skilled in strategic and/or tactical application of tax structures, provisions and laws to minimize direct and indirect tax burdens, mitigate risk and optimize cash flow for multinational enterprises in start-up, growth, turnaround, restructure and cultural change phases.

Jennings has significant experience with supply chain strategy and optimization, M&A, JV structure and negotiation, transfer pricing and intangible property planning, VAT planning and compliance, US and non-US reporting, negotiation and defense of US and non-US tax matters, transaction and project management. He also has experience with SEC, financial reporting and Sarbanes-Oxley compliance.

Jennings holds a master’s degree from The American University and a bachelor’s degree from Old Dominion University. He is a licensed CPA in the Commonwealth of Virginia, a member of the International Fiscal Association and the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA) and the Greater Washington Society of Certified Public Accountants (GWCPA). He is also a frequent speaker and author for CCH and the Alliance for Tax, Legal and Accounting Seminars (ATLAS).

Hicham El Ouardighi, CPA

El Ouardighi has more than 14 years of extensive experience in both public accounting and private sector experience. He focuses on various industries including, transactional banking, software consulting, high tech, life sciences, and telecommunications. His client base includes the country’s second largest defeasance company. While at Arthur Andersen, he managed and reviewed tax consulting and compliance engagements; prepared and reviewed corporate, partnership, as well as individual income tax returns; researching various tax law issues and provided sound tax consultation to a variety of clients on numerous complex business issues/transactions including reorganizations, tax-free exchanges, international tax issues, and acquisitions and mergers. El Ouardighi background also includes experience working for an import-export and real estate companies where he worked to review corporate, partnership, and individual income tax returns; researching various tax law issues; and performing many other related functions.

El Ouardighi earned a bachelor’s degree from Radford University and a master’s degree from The American University. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountant (AICPA) and the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA).

Ernest D. Sanders, CPA

Sanders has more than 21 years of experience in both public and private accounting. He brings this diverse and extensive background to provide tax services in a variety of specialties. He works closely with high net worth individuals and their flow-through investment management businesses in partnership, S-corporation, and limited liability company entity structures, as well as implementing individual tax return planning strategies to minimize overall tax impact. Sanders also works with business clients by providing deal structuring and tax due diligence analysis, tax provision review, and other related tax advisory services in addition to tax return preparation and information reporting for corporate entities. He specializes in providing special project tax related services including, FAS 109, FIN 48 implementation, Section 382 NOL limitation studies, and other consulting services related to specialized tax needs.

As an experienced tax consulting senior manager with Ernst & Young LLP, Sanders specialized in tax advisory services, transaction support, and tax provision reviews for high-technology corporate and consolidated entities.

Sanders holds a bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Virginia, where he was a National Merit Scholar and an Echols Scholar. He is a member of the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA) and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

John H. Sipe, CPA

Sipe has more than 18 years of experience in auditing and accounting. His background includes more than 16 years in the private sector and with Ernst & Young LLP and KSS.

He has served a variety of public sector clients including Mobil Corporation (now Exxon Mobil), Time Warner and First Virginia Banks, Inc. (now BB&T), as well as private sector clients including, Inova Health Systems, Inc. Jack Kent Cooke, Inc. and various nonprofit entities.

Sipe has also served as the US Corporate Controller of BNFL, Inc., a government contractor focused on nuclear waste remediation in addition to holding executive financial and accounting positions in various areas including as the CFO of Rainmaker Interactive, Inc., the real estate sector as the Vice President of Finance for Investment Properties of Van Metre Companies and the construction industry as the CFO of King Carpentry, Inc. In these roles, Sipe had extensive experience in the daily management of finance and accounting staffs, project management, mergers and acquisitions, legal and corporate governance, treasury management, corporate and project financing and financial reporting. He has also worked as an independent financial consultant where he was involved in merger and acquisition due diligence for Martek Biosciences, operational accounting process improvement activities for Inova Health Systems and SEC financial reporting and corporate governance activities for United States Lime and Minerals, Inc.

Sipe has a bachelor’s degree from James Madison University and has been licensed as a certified public accountant in the Commonwealth of Virginia since October 1990.

Chris Mack, CPA

Mack has more than 17 years of experience in public accounting providing audit and consulting services to clients.

Prior to joining Reznick Group and for the past three years, Mack worked on the audit staff of Kaiser Scherer & Schlegel where she provided accounting consulting services to many publicly held companies. Chris began her career at Ernst & Young LLP, where she worked for 14 years, most recently as a senior manager in the Entrepreneurial Services Group. While there she specialized in providing audit and consulting services to venture-backed technology companies and specifically consulted with many clients on revenue recognition and equity accounting issues. She assisted many of her clients with initial public offerings and mergers/acquisitions.

Mack earned her bachelor’s degree from the College of William and Mary. She is a licensed CPA in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

Kathleen Jeannin, CPA

Jeannin has more than 14 years of experience in both public and private accounting specializing in state and local tax services.

Prior to joining Reznick Group, Jeannin worked as president of Dominion Tax Consulting, Inc., and on the tax staff of Ernst & Young LLP where she specialized in state and local tax consulting and served a broad array of industries. Jeannin’s experience also includes working in the corporate tax planning department of Ahold USA, Inc., the third largest retail grocer in the world. While with Ahold USA, Jeannin continued to specialize in state and local tax, but also broadened her skills in the federal tax and accounting areas.

Jeannin earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Virginia. She is a licensed CPA in the Commonwealth of Virginia and is a member of the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA).

Elizabeth C. Simmons, CPA

Simmons has more than 10 years of specialized experience providing corporate and partnership tax services. Her primary responsibilities include providing clients with a full range of tax compliance and consulting services, such as FAS 109 computations, analysis and research with mergers and acquisitions, audit assistance, and consultation on filing issues. In her career, Simmons has serviced various types of entities (S-corporations, partnerships, C-corporations and individuals) and clients, from start-up companies to multinational corporations.

Prior to joining Reznick, Simmons was with Kaiser Scherer & Schlegel, PLLC (for four years) and Ernst & Young, LLP where she continued to hone her public accounting skills and knowledge.

Simmons earned a bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants (VSCPA).

About Reznick Group

A national leader in providing accounting, tax and business advisory services, Reznick Group serves clients in a broad spectrum of industries. Reznick Group is ranked among the top 20 public accounting firms in the nation and has approximately 1,000 people serving clients nationwide.

Reznick Group maintains offices in Atlanta, Ga., Baltimore, Md., Bethesda, Md., Charlotte, N.C., Chicago, Ill., Los Angeles, Ca., Sacramento, Ca. and Tysons Corner, Va. Reznick Group is a Certified Public Accounting Firm and a Professional Corporation.

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