2022 HonoreesNACVA and the CTI are founded on excellence, superior quality, and the spirit of pioneering. We have a rich history of partnering with visionary leaders across all spectrums of the accounting and financial consulting professions regardless of affiliation with NACVA and the CTI. Simply put, we want the best of the best among our group of subject matter experts and leaders.
We are thrilled to recognize this list of professionals for their accomplishments to the profession and their communities and for their contributions yet to come.
Jonathan Abbotoy, CPA, ABV
Jonathan Abbotoy, CPA, ABV
Manager, Business Valuation and Litigation Support
Bober Markey Fedorovich
Jonathan Abbotoy is a manager in the Bober Markey Fedorovich (BMF) Business Valuation and Litigation Support practice group and has over five years of experience providing business valuation, consulting, and litigation support services. Mr. Abbotoy specializes in providing these services to companies for purposes including gift and estate tax planning, mergers and acquisitions, buy/sell agreements, shareholder disputes, breach of contract, economic damages, and family law.
In 2017, Mr. Abbotoy graduated magna cum laude from Tennessee Tech University (TTU) with a dual degree in finance and accounting. During his time at TTU, he was a University Innovation Fellow, an innovation and leadership training program through Stanford University Institute of Design. Additionally, Mr. Abbotoy was the lead student analyst on TTU’s investment fund, placing second overall in the Tennessee Valley Authority Investment Challenge.
In 2018, Mr. Abbotoy became a Certified Public Accountant and in 2020, he became Accredited in Business Valuations. He is a member of the Estate Planning Council of Cleveland and is the Treasurer of the Board of Project Outrun, a non-profit organization providing shoes to pediatric cancer patients.
In his free time, he enjoys running, spending time with his wife and two sons, and cheering on the Buffalo Bills and Buffalo Sabres.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I believe that the most critical issue facing the financial consulting profession is the combination of a decreasing number of new professionals entering the field and a lack of emerging thought leaders.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? In my opinion, the implementation and utilization of artificial intelligence within the profession is a major area for potential growth.
Jennifer Anderson, CPA, ABV
Jennifer Anderson, CPA, ABV
Transaction Advisory Manager
Jennifer Anderson is a manager in Boulay’s Transaction Group, which includes valuation, transaction advisory, and financial and tax due diligence services. She joined Boulay in 2021 and has over five years of valuation experience. Ms. Anderson specializes in the valuation of business enterprises, intangible assets, and securities including debt, equity, options, and preferred stock for both public and private middle-market companies. She is a graduate of the University of Minnesota, Carlson School of Management, where she received bachelor degrees in accounting and finance. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and has the Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) designation from the AICPA. Prior to joining Boulay, Ms. Anderson began her career at a national accounting firm performing business valuations and assisting audit teams with technical valuation-related issues. Her ability to combine a big-picture approach with a detail-oriented mindset sets her apart among her peers. Focusing on the unique circumstances of each client, while utilizing her prior valuation experience, she develops quality, defensible analyses, and creative solutions to meet their needs. As a CPA with business valuation credentials, Ms. Anderson cultivates a deep understanding of the individual factors impacting each client’s business and financial performance, and combines that with her broader knowledge of the economy and industry to develop thoughtful, logical, and supportable conclusions.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? One of the most important issues facing the financial consulting industry is being able to adapt quickly to changing conditions while still providing timely and relevant information to clients to make informed business decisions. As seen in the last several years, and particularly the last few due to COVID-19, changes in technology, staffing, the economic landscape, etc. are consistently impacting clients’ businesses and financial consulting practices themselves. Being aware of and able to acclimate quickly to these changes is what allows a consultant to ask the right questions and develop work products and solutions that are thoughtful, logical, and defensible.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? Major growth within the financial consulting profession will continue to stem from the generational transfer of business ownership. Buyers and sellers will be looking towards professionals who can help them through the transition process from succession planning to the transaction itself to post-transaction support. Being able to support all steps in the process and offer guidance with a solid understanding of the business and the overall marketplace is where financial consulting professionals and firms can provide significant value to their clients.
Robert Beckley, CPA, CVA
Robert Beckley, CPA, CVA
Robert Beckley is a Senior Consultant in the Valuation Services practice of Crowe. Mr. Beckley has experience in providing valuation, forensic accounting, financial and economic analysis, and business advisory services across a variety of different industries. Prior to joining Crowe, Mr. Beckley worked for three years in EY’s assurance practice. He worked on audit teams in a multitude of industries including manufacturing, agriculture, energy and resources, real estate, hospitality, and construction.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? The financial markets and, therefore, the financial consulting profession faces constant change in a rapidly evolving environment. That environment can be subject to disruption from many sources. The need to be adaptable in the face of that change is the most important issue we face. We need to ensure we are open to collaboration across all the practices of our firm to drive the best results for clients and be proactive in our provision of guidance on the many challenges they face.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? I think growth will come across a wide range of industries and solution offerings in the profession. Key growth services will continue to change and adapt to the prevailing business environment.
Coleton Benfatti, CVA
Coleton Benfatti, CVA
The Red Maple Group
Oak Ridge, NJ
Coleton (“Cole”) Benfatti is a Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) with expertise in performing valuations and economic damages assessments for litigation and non-litigation purposes. As a CVA at The Red Maple Group, Mr. Benfatti is responsible for conducting comprehensive analyses, developing reports, and presenting findings to clients. Mr. Benfatti began working at The Red Maple Group full-time in June of 2021 and, in June 2023, promoted to Associate after successfully completing his two-year training program.
During his two-year training, Mr. Benfatti has assisted and completed more than 50 business valuations, commercial damage calculations, intellectual property valuations, and personal injury estimates. In mid-2022, he earned his CVA certification from the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts. Also, in 2022, Mr. Benfatti co-authored a paper with Dr. Chris Young titled “Shining Light on the Dark Period: Explaining the Dark Period Valuation and its Requirements” that was presented at the annual conference for the Collegium of Pecuniary Damages Experts.
In addition to his technical skills, Mr. Benfatti received his Bachelor of Science degree from Franklin and Marshall College in May 2021. He double majored in business, organizations, and society, (BOS Program) and economics. During his time at the college, Mr. Benfatti was a student-athlete on the men's varsity football team demonstrating his ability to balance his academic and athletic responsibilities.
With his broad range of skills and experience, Mr. Benfatti is well-equipped to provide comprehensive valuation and damages assessment services to his clients, while also providing guidance and mentorship to those around him.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I believe that the most current issue and the major opportunity for growth in this field would have to be adapting to (and utilizing) new and emerging technologies. Advances in technology are transforming the way financial consultants operate and interact with clients. For example, the increasing use of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and big data analytics is changing the nature of financial analysis and decision-making. Clients now expect real-time insights, faster decision-making, and more personalized advice than ever before. This presents an allusion, that our field can simply be replaced by an AI robot or values can be determined quickly without much analysis; however, the field of valuation is an interdisciplinary combination of art and science as each project for each client needs to be carefully considered and analyzed. I have witnessed many “experts” hurt their clients by simply using a “plug-and-play” valuation tool but do not understand why or how their automated tool works.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? A major area of growth for financial consultants would be to stay up to date with these technological developments and incorporate them into their practices to remain relevant and competitive. Not only incorporate them, but educate themselves and understand how and why these tools work. Failure to do so could lead to a loss of clients and revenue, as well as a decline in the overall reputation of the profession. It's essential for financial consultants to continually learn and update their skills, embrace innovation, and adopt new technologies to stay ahead of the curve.
Disovankiri (Kiri) Boung, CVA
Disovankiri (Kiri) Boung, CVA
Disovankiri (Kiri) Boung is a senior analyst at Coherent Economics where he and his team provide world-class litigation consulting services to some of the largest and most recognizable leading law firms, Fortune 500 companies, and government agencies. Mr. Boung assists clients in matters involving securities litigation, appraisal disputes, mergers and acquisitions, intellectual property litigation, consumer fraud, and class certification.
Mr. Boung specializes in developing valuation models, performing statistical and econometric analysis, estimating lost profits and damages, and assessing market efficiency. His experience spans across multiple industries, including high-tech, energy, consumer goods, electronics, vehicles, and pharmaceuticals.
Besides consulting, Mr. Boung is an adjunct lecturer at the National University of Management (NUM) International College in Cambodia, where he teaches undergraduate finance. He holds a master’s in applied economics from the George Washington University, and a Bachelor of Business Administration (economics and innovation) from Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University, Japan.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I believe that the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession is the market uncertainties which pose questions to consultants, analysts, and valuators in estimating future cash flow of a firm.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? I think the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession are M&A, valuation, and litigation consulting. As companies continue to strategically cooperate together, the need for service to provide fair, unbiased, and professional knowledge of a company increases.
Rachel Kinzer, CPA, CFF, CFE
Rachel Kinzer, CPA, CFF, CFE
Consulting Senior Associate
Moore Colson CPAs and Advisors
Rachel Kinzer has made significant contributions to the financial forensics industry throughout her seven years of experience in the field. She has assisted testifying experts in multiple civil and criminal action suits in county, state, and United States district and international courts. She has also performed independent financial forensic investigations for several companies following allegations of misappropriation of business funds. Her industry areas of expertise include automotive, healthcare, manufacturing, and telecommunications.
Before starting at Moore Colson, Ms. Kinzer owned and ran her own accounting business, RKE Accounting, LLC, for almost five years. In addition to being a Certified Public Accountant and Certified Fraud Examiner, she also holds the Certified in Financial Forensics designation through the AICPA. She makes a great effort to advance, not only the profession, but works to help individuals within the profession as well. While still in college, she was the president of the Collegiate Accounting Association and an accounting lab tutor, both positions allowing her to help others succeed within the accounting profession. Outside of her professional work, Ms. Kinzer also served as a pro-bono investigative accountant for her homeowner’s association in Cobb County. She reviewed allegations of embezzlement against the board of directors. Upon completing her analysis of banking and financial records, her work was turned over to the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office Fraud and Forgery Division to pursue criminal felony fraud charges against the alleged defendants.
Kevin Foyteck, CPA, ASA, ABV, CVA
Kevin Foyteck, CPA, ASA, ABV, CVA
Vice President, Valuation Advisory
Kevin Foyteck is a vice president in the business valuation practice of the valuation advisory group at Stout. He has extensive experience providing valuation advisory and litigation services to small and middle market businesses, law firms, tax advisors, and individuals.
Mr. Foyteck has provided valuation services for numerous purposes, including transaction advisory, marital dissolution, shareholder disputes, financial reporting, and gift and estate tax. In addition, he has testified as an expert witness and has experience in forensic accounting, fraud, economic damages, and other litigation engagements.
He has published articles, lectured, and participated in continuing education seminars on the subjects of valuation and litigation advisory services.
- American Society of Appraisers
- American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
- National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts
- Exit Planning Exchange, Founding Board Member
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? Attracting and retaining talented professionals is the most important issue facing the industry. The valuation industry competes for talent with private industry, attorneys, and investment bankers more than it does among competing valuation firms.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? Litigation is a major growth area for younger professionals given that many experienced professionals are aging out of the industry and there is a shortage of professionals interested in expert witness work.
Jacob Galperin, CVA
Jacob Galperin, CVA
Senior Valuation Associate
South Park Advisors, LLC
Jacob Galperin is a senior valuation associate at South Park Advisors in Phoenix, AZ, responsible for financial analysis on active projects and assisting in the preparation of valuation reports for clients. Prior to joining South Park Advisors, he served as an acquisitions analyst for Michigan-based RHP Properties, the nation’s largest private owner and operator of manufactured home communities.
Dylan Gans co-founded Baton Market to bring previously out-of-reach business valuation data and expert guidance to every U.S. small business owner to help them meet their growth goals or plan a stronger exit. Baton has built a world-class team and attracted top tier investors like Bloomberg, Giant Ventures, and more. Prior to founding Baton, Mr. Gans was vice president of revenue at a company that was acquired by Aramark (NYSE: ARMK) where he learned, first hand, the trials of selling a business. Mr. Gans also sits on the board of an alzheimer’s non-profit.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? Of the owners we've worked with at Baton (in the thousands) very few arrive knowing what their business is actually worth. Opaque and downright unethical business practices have contributed to the problem over the years and the end result hurts us as much as our clients because they're understandably wary of advice.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? On the flip side, there's a great opportunity for our field to be transparent and empower clients to make the best decisions for themselves and their businesses. Baton has seen tremendous growth because we believe that every owner has a right to know their numbers and stay in the driver's seat of their decision-making. It's our mission. That's how our profession can collectively restore trust, which would be a win for everyone.
Eduardo Gayoso, CVA
Eduardo Gayoso, CVA
Guaynabo, Puerto Rico
M&A Transactions, Financial Advisory
Eduardo Gayoso is an associate at Bluhaus Capital and has been there for four and a half years. He has completed over 25 business valuations for companies in multiple industries such as tech, pharma and medical, home improvement, real estate, and food and beverage, among others. In addition to this, he has consulted multiple government agencies in Puerto Rico in topics such as fiscal plans, financial reporting, and budgeting.
Mr. Gayoso acquired a Bachelor of Science in management with a concentration in global management, and a liberal studies major in global perspectives from Benltey University in 2017.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? In my opinion, the most important current issue facing financial consulting is the assumption that financial consulting fees do not justify deliverables. The main reason stemming from large companies that bombarded clients with staff to increase fees but do not deliver any substantial results and/or suggestions.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? In my opinion, any area related to climate is most favorable for the consulting profession. Countries constantly change their climate control laws, requirements, etc. Having consultants up to date with the major changes can be beneficial to any firm trying to attract newer, bigger clients.
Colton Gilliam, CFE, JD LLM
Colton Gilliam, CFE, JD LLM
Director, Forensic Accounting, Litigation, and Business Valuation
Fort Worth, TX
Expert Witness, Business Valuation, Financial Forensics
Colton Gilliam has emerged as a leader in the Whitely Penn forensic litigation and valuation department. Leading by example, he is not afraid to take on challenges and is extremely eager to learn and improve in the field of litigation support and valuation. Since joining the firm in 2018, Mr. Gilliam has performed business valuations in connection with litigation, fair value, and gift and estate taxes in industries ranging from oilfield services, family limited partnerships, information technology, and real estate, among others. Mr. Gilliam also excels in services such as depositions, arbitration, mediation, and trial work at the state and federal court levels for matters involving commercial litigation damages and shareholder disputes. He also provides forensic accounting and other litigation support services in connection with marital dissolutions, probate litigation, partner disputes, commercial damages, and other types of litigation.
As a bright and hardworking licensed attorney who is also certified to practice before the United States Tax Court, Mr. Gilliam is a member of the Colorado State Bar, Texas State Bar, and the Dallas and Tarrant County Bar Associations. He participated in the 2022 Leadership Fort Worth program and is heavily involved in taking initiative in training and developing staff as well as participating with internal leadership and management programs sponsored by Whitley Penn. Mr. Gilliam continues to grow as a young professional and obtain new goals. He is currently working towards obtaining his CPA and sharpening his leadership skills and is an invaluable asset to the Whitley Penn team.
Daniel Healy graduated from the University of Maryland in 2017 with a degree in Economics. He is currently a vice president at Kroll in their expert services department. Mr. Healy has participated in numerous high-profile patent infringement cases and has served as a consultant on many aspects of cases from damages analysis and modeling to trial preparations. His experience includes financial consulting and damage quantification consulting services to clients in the context of litigation, intellectual property valuations, financial reporting, and financial transformations.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? The most important issue facing the financial consulting profession is managing client expectations. Consultants must understand their clients' goals and expectations to provide effective advice. Communication with clients is key, and consultants must direct clients to reliable sources of data to prevent any oversight based on misinformation.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? I believe the major growth area in the financial consulting profession is the demand for subject matter experts, rather than a generalist consultant/consulting firm. Specialized consulting is more suitable to develop better value-added and tailormade solutions during times of economic uncertainty and financial unrest.
Mariz Helal, CVA
Mariz Helal, CVA
BK Associates, Inc.
Mariz Helal is a Certified Valuation Analyst and a senior associate at BK Associates. She specializes in intangible asset valuation including valuations of airline loyalty programs, brands, slots, gates, and routes. Ms. Helal has worked with multiple major airlines around the world and provided valuation services in connection with capital market transactions and financial reporting purposes. Ms. Helal graduated from the University of Maryland with a bachelor’s degree in economics and has years of experience in the valuation and consulting field.
Veronica Hildenbrand is passionate about the roles of valuation and capital markets in international development. and has global experiences in the financial services and consulting industries.
Ms. Hildenbrand started her career in institutional impact investing in Amsterdam and is currently a consultant in the financial advisory department of Deloitte Dutch Caribbean. She provides valuation, due diligence, and strategic advice to companies in both Latin America and Europe. She has served a range of private and public clients, including Central Banks in the Caribbean and South America, and has advised on high profile M&A and international lending deals totaling several billion USD in value.
She graduated from Phillips Academy Andover and Rotterdam School of Management, Erasmus University. Ms. Hildenbrand is a dedicated team player, community builder, and contributed greatly to the foundation of the Deloitte Mangrove Foundation in Curacao with the mission to offset Deloitte's carbon emissions and protect biodiversity in the region.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I feel that corruption continues to be a forefront, but under-discussed, issue in financial systems worldwide. The role of financial consultants in recognizing and mitigating the effects of corruption is crucial in promoting economic growth and stability. As professionals, we have a responsibility to act with integrity and uphold ethical standards of NACVA and other member firms. By ensuring our clients adhere to standards and are compliant with regulations, financial consultants can contribute to a more transparent and accountable financial system that is also inclusive and regenerative for future generations.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? In a similar vein, the growth of FinTech is imperative to a truly inclusive financial system.
Tiffani Horth, CVA, MST
Tiffani Horth, CVA, MST
Business Valuation Projects Leader
Business Valuation/Appraisal, Accounting Information Systems
Tiffani Jo Horth is a staff accountant based in Wichita, KS who joined AdamsBrown in 2021. She has been involved in the accounting industry since 2016 and has accumulated a wealth of experience, knowledge, and skills. She holds a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting, a Bachelor of Business Administration in Management Information Systems/Information Technology, a Master of Accountancy in Accounting Information Systems, a Master of Science in Taxation, and a Graduate Certificate in Corporate Taxation.
Ms. Horth is an active National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts member. She is passionate about transparency in her work and values honesty in client relationships. With a background in the restaurant industry, she has honed her skills in handling difficult issues and is adept at finding solutions to problems.
Ms. Horth has AuDHD, which has allowed her to see the bigger picture and enjoy the process of solving complex puzzles, particularly with business valuation services. Her unique perspective enables her to design processes and procedures that improve efficiency and accuracy. Her range of skills, work ethic, and ability to identify and analyze anomalies makes her invaluable to AdamsBrown as a valuation project manager. Dave Buchholz, AdamsBrown Director of Valuation Services, states: “Since Tiffani came on board, our valuation effort has attained a higher level of professionalism and I fully expect we will continue our progress under her leadership. She seeks continuous improvement in process and efficiency. If I could write my ideal profile for this function, it would look very much like Tiffani.”
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I do not believe that we have even touched the surface of the financial impacts that the pandemic has had on both the individual industries and the global economy, as a whole. We will be feeling the ramifications from it for a long time, and understanding the effects of it on the subject companies we are valuing will take deeper analysis and a more conservative approach.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? A major growth area in the financial consulting profession would be to have the clients more involved in their business projections and financial future. Making sure each one of the clients has a well-documented business plan and understanding of their plans for the future would increase the depth of any future business valuation.
Matthew Isaak, CVA
Matthew Isaak, CVA
Isaak Advisory Group
Matt Isaak has experience assisting IAG’s clients with ownership transition plans, firm valuations, and representation in M&A transactions. He has focused on valuation services for both internal stock transfers as well as external sales. Mr. Isaak also compiles and analyzes AEC market research for use by our clients during the development of strategic plans. He continues to be responsible for developing and updating IAG’s Texas and Florida databases of small to mid-size architectural and engineering firms.
Mr. Isaak is a 2020 graduate of the California Polytechnic State University’s Orfalea College of Business, majoring in industrial technology and packaging, where he concentrated on business operations.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? In my opinion, financial consulting will have many new developments in technology in the near future that could significantly impact how work is done in the industry. Consultants must remain vigilant to keep up to date with new technologies to reduce workload and increase productivity.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? A major growth area I have seen exhibited by my clients is the increased need for internal ownership transition as a way to retain key employees. With the current labor shortage, I think this will continue to be a growing trend among small to midsize companies.
Scott Koman, CPA, CVA, CFE, MAFF
Scott Koman, CPA, CVA, CFE, MAFF
Manager, Advisory Services
Boyer & Ritter
Camp Hill, PA
Business Valuation, Fraud
Scott Koman is a manager in the advisory services group at Boyer & Ritter LLC in Camp Hill, Pennsylvania. Throughout his career, he has sought to expand his professional knowledge across a variety of industries, and in addition to his CPA license, he has obtained credentials as Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA), Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE), and Master Analyst in Financial Forensics (MAFF).
Over the past three years, Mr. Koman immersed himself in business valuation and fraud. He is focused on making us more efficient in our engagements and helping us find ways to utilize technology more productively. He has used his forensic skills to work with state authorities to defend elderly Pennsylvania citizens from being taken advantage of and looks forward to continuing to make a difference within our firm and our communities. Mr. Koman is committed to upholding the profession’s core values of competence, integrity, and objectivity. Every day, he lives these values through the work he performs on behalf of the firm’s clients, as well as his colleagues and the firm’s owners. Mr. Koman uses his incredible talents and skills to build on the historic strength of the profession, which in today’s environment, is continually changing amid rapid technological advancements, demographic shifts, and regulatory complexity, domestically and around the world.
Mr. Koman earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration with a major in accounting, and minors in economics and marketing from the Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania.
Ryan Kucan is a senior associate with ScottMadden, Inc. He initially joined the firm as a co-op student in 2014, returning in 2021 after completing his MBA at the University of Toronto, Rotman School of Management. Mr. Kucan primarily supports valuation and rate of return engagements within ScottMadden’s rates and regulatory practice area. He has supported several asset valuations within the electric, water, and natural gas utility industries. He is preparing to apply for the Certified Valuation Analyst and the Certified Rate of Return Analyst designations in 2023. In addition to his MBA, Mr. Kucan holds a BS in business administration, with a double concentration in accounting and finance, from the D'Amore-McKim School of Business at Northeastern University.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I believe that the most important issue currently facing the profession is attracting and retaining talent. I find it can often be difficult to explain the details of the profession without being overly technical, which can deter some potential candidates. Though initially intimidating, the role is quite straightforward to learn on the job and extremely rewarding for those that take the time to dive in.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? I may be slightly biased, but I believe that there will continue to be major growth within the electric, water, and natural gas utility sector. Currently, the industry is undergoing a period of exponential change to meet decarbonization goals set by both federal and state-level regulators. As utility clients continue to work to meet these ever-evolving goals, and consolidation continues, clients will continue to depend on the services of financial consultants.
Todd Kutcher, CVA
Todd Kutcher, CVA
Senior Vice President
Reliant Business Valuation
Todd Kutcher is currently a senior vice president at Reliant Business Valuation, a nationwide valuation firm that specializes in third party certified business valuations and equipment appraisals for Small Business Administration (SBA) lenders. Mr. Kutcher started his career with Reliant Business Valuation in 2018, after graduating from The College of New Jersey with a Bachelor of Science in Finance. Throughout his career, he has performed over a thousand business valuations, primarily for financing purposes, across numerous industries, including (but not limited to) SaaS-based businesses, commercial construction firms, professional service providers, and retail locations.
In addition to performing business valuations, Mr. Kutcher mentors and reviews the work of several analysts to ensure accuracy and SBA SOP compliance. Furthermore, he has experience appraising start-ups, ESOPs, and minority interests, among other specializations. In 2020, Mr. Kutcher also worked with PPP lenders to assist in the automation of forgiveness applications; a strenuous process for both business owners and lenders alike.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? The recent emphasis on SPACs and investor interest in pre-revenue or pre-profit enterprises in the M&A realm is disrupting traditional valuation methodologies and influencing consumer risk tolerance. A lack of emphasis on traditional valuation principles and historical performance from many parties is resulting in valuations for pre-revenue companies based on 'best-case' scenarios. While increases in value are typically celebrated, highly aggressive values derived from 'best-case' scenarios may cause defaults for early-stage firms who cannot execute as initially intended.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? With constant changes in technology, there are increased opportunities for new businesses and industries to emerge. This will result in the creation of new specializations for subject matter experts. A recent example is social media—it has disrupted societal norms, has created new areas of specialization, and provides free or low-cost marketing opportunities for both enterprises and consultants. Technology also reduces entry barriers due to increased consumer access along with increased opportunities for automation.
ECG Management Consultants
Junpeng (Jimmy) Liang’s experience extends from analyzing financial statements to understanding the financial conditions of healthcare institutions and assessing physician services and compensation. He currently works on a wide range of fair market value (FMV) and commercial reasonableness (CR) projects concerning business enterprise valuation and physician compensation.
At ECG, Mr. Liang’s focus is on valuation opinions primarily related to physician compensation and business enterprise valuation. These FMV and CR projects focus on arrangements for clinical, administrative, and call coverage services. Prior to joining ECG, he was a data analyst intern in the department of student money management at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign, where he evaluated demographic trends of international students by analyzing payment data. He also evaluated tuition amounts, demographic information, and educational levels to create a new program that made the financing process clearer.
In a little over a year, Cameron Long led Value Buddy to develop technology to make business valuations accessible to hundreds of small businesses and startups. Value Buddy is a valuation firm that is radically shifting the way businesses raise funding, obtain 409A and SBA7a valuations, and measure their performance. While valuations from legacy suppliers cost thousands of dollars, hours of skilled labor, and take weeks, or even months, to be delivered, Value Buddy leverages machine learning to instantly analyze data from millions of private business transactions, which its valuation experts use to build robust valuation models. Additionally, Mr. Long 's outreach and work with Black and minority-owned business groups are making great strides in bridging the racial funding gap. With Mr. Long on its executive team, Value Buddy is poised to continue shaking up the business valuation landscape.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? The most important issue facing the financial consulting profession is the ability to keep pace with rapidly evolving technology. The field of valuation, for example, has seen few advancements since the creation of Excel. This stagnation opens the door for cutting-edge FinTech companies to leverage artificial intelligence and machine learning to provide more accurate, data-driven, and affordable valuations for small businesses that often lack the access to capital required to purchase a $5–10K valuation report. Innovations such as this will enable small businesses to negotiate fair terms when raising funding, identify areas for growth or improvement, and make more informed decisions for acquisitions or exits.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? In terms of major growth areas in the financial consulting profession, the focus should be on serving the seven million+ lower and middle market businesses in the U.S. These businesses are the backbone of our economy and have traditionally had limited access to financial professionals who can assist them in accessing capital and achieving growth. However, with the adoption of technological advancements in financial consulting and valuation, there is a significant opportunity to address this gap and enable these businesses to thrive. Just as QuickBooks revolutionized accounting and bookkeeping for small businesses, private valuation firms that leverage technology to provide accessible and affordable financial consulting and valuation services to lower and middle-market businesses are poised for success in the years to come.
HHM Advisory Services
Connor Long is an associate at HHM CPAs where he is responsible for business valuations, litigation engagements, financial analysis, financial modeling, and transaction advisory.
Prior to joining HHM CPAs, Mr. Long completed a venture capital internship focusing on the biotechnology, biopharmaceutical, and life science markets. He was also a researcher for the University of Tennessee Knoxville and elected as president for UTC's Graduate Research Investment Fund in 2021 while completing his degree. Mr. Long holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga and a Bachelor of Science from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? Access to data is extremely valuable to any financial consulting profession. Technology advances increase the variety and applications of data sources. In order to maintain a competitive edge, firms need to be able to effectively navigate technology advances and their own data procurement.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? I believe that there is significant room for growth in ESG consulting. ESG standards and procedures in any organization are becoming increasingly vital as investing and regulation trends are focusing on sustainability factors.
Ryan M. McKeon, CVA
Ryan M. McKeon, CVA
Manager Valuation and Litigation Support Group
Ryan M. McKeon specializes in preparing business valuations for a variety of purposes, including but not limited to: marital dissolution, gift and estate tax reporting, SBA loan financing, and shareholder disputes. Mr. McKeon’s industry specializations include auto dealerships, automotive, cannabis growing, construction, manufacturing, professional practices, and real estate holding companies. He also assists in the preparation of reports for wage loss, wrongful death, and damage claims in accordance with Rule 26(a)(2)(B) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Mr. McKeon was recently promoted to manager within the valuation and litigation support group at Doeren Mayhew. He is responsible for managing engagements, training and educating staff, and communicating with clients and attorneys. Mr. McKeon focuses on continuing education and staying up to date on the latest business valuation news and topics. He earned his Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) certification in April 2021, and passed ASA’s Valuation of Intangible Assets and Special Topics class (BV303) in April 2022. He strives to gain knowledge on different valuation topics in different industries. Mr. McKeon prepares detailed valuation reports that are credible and well supported. He ensures that all valuation reports are completed with a high level of satisfaction. He conducts himself with high ethical and moral standards. His professionalism and attention to detail have contributed to the success of Doeren Mayhew’s business valuation practice and provide value to the business valuation community. Mr. McKeon will continue to grow as a professional, be more involved in the business valuation community, and gain new skills and knowledge throughout his career.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I would consider rising inflation and increased business costs to be the most important current issues facing the business valuation profession. The current state of the economy and rising costs make it difficult to project future cash flows and value a business.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? I would consider the preparation of valuations for gift and estate tax purposes to be a major growth area for the business valuation profession. I expect there to be a large increase in gift tax valuations over the next few years as the current exemption amounts will be significantly lower starting in 2026. This provides tremendous opportunities for professionals to service their clients.
Logan Miller, CVA
Logan Miller, CVA
Brixey & Meyer
Audit and Assurance, Business Valuation
As a senior on our audit and assurance team, Logan Miller works closely with clients in the completion of their employee benefit plan and financial statement audits, reviews, and compilations. Within his work on the business valuation team, Mr. Miller assists clients through the performance of valuation and calculation engagements. Mr. Miller has experience in engagements within a variety of industries, including nonprofit, manufacturing, and healthcare. In addition to providing assurance and business valuation services for our clients, Mr. Miller has also worked on a number of consulting projects for clients in a variety of industries. He gives back to the community through his involvement in the Brixey & Meyer Community Outreach Foundation and other local nonprofit organizations. He is currently in the process of sitting for his CPA.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? The most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession is the people issue. Firms are struggling both to recruit and retain qualified individuals. Retirement trends dictate that firms must begin to become more intentional in promoting the benefits of the profession, both in terms of personal and professional growth. I have found my work experience within the valuation space has greatly enriched my understanding of the drivers of sustained business growth and feel that more exposure to the rewards of a career in financial consulting will help alleviate the recruitment issue moving forward.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? Major growth areas in the financial consulting profession include growing our ability to help clients face new accounting, tax, regulatory, labor, and environmental regulations in a manner that considers the needs of each specific business and individual. Each client comes with a unique set of challenges and opportunities, and it is incumbent upon us as the advisors to help our clients chart out the most appropriate path for the facts and circumstances of each. This will involve continued professional growth and pushing ourselves beyond our comfort zones at times, but the result is we, as consultants, will develop long term relationships based upon candor and trust.
Brett Gibbons Nelson
Brett Gibbons Nelson
Brett Nelson is a director in the business valuation and transaction advisory services division at VMG Health and is based in the Dallas office. He specializes in providing valuation, transaction advisory, and operational consulting services to businesses within the healthcare services industry. Mr. Nelson’s experience spans numerous healthcare subindustries. Specifically, he has significant experience with acute care hospitals, ambulatory surgery centers, diagnostic imaging centers, physician groups, radiation therapy centers, risk-bearing entities, and several other ancillary healthcare businesses.
Mr. Nelson graduated from Southern Methodist University’s Cox School of Business with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance, and Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences with a Bachelor of Science in Economics with Financial Applications. He is currently pursuing the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation through the CFA Institute.
Henil Shah is a manager in WithumSmith+Brown’s forensic and valuation services group. Mr. Shah has a total of seven years experience of providing business valuation, transaction and advisory services for companies spanning technology, consumer discretionary, life sciences, and other industries. At Withum, Mr. Shah handles business valuations for tax, financial reporting, litigation, financing purposes, and for Small Business Administration (SBA) lenders. Before joining Withum, Mr. Shah worked with organizations like Moody’s Analytics Knowledge Services and Knowcraft Analytics. He has held various positions in the valuation division, and has been a part of numerous engagements for 409A, purchase price allocations, goodwill impairment, portfolio valuations, buy-side advisory, and gift and estate tax valuations.
Mr. Shah holds a MBA from MIT School of Business, Pune, India, and bachelor’s in engineering in information technology from Gujarat Technological University.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I believe one of the biggest issues is not meeting the speed of technology emergence in various sectors. Technology is being integrated with the help of artificial intelligence and Big Data Analytics to various industries, which is helping the companies to automate their business and services. However, I believe a similar level of technological implementation is still not being done in the financial consulting industry. Because of this, the financial consulting profession is lagging behind compared to other consulting industries.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? There are two areas. If the companies operating in financial consulting profession focus on the following two areas simultaneously, it will help the financial consulting industry and its clients to grow significantly:
- Being prepared for market turnaround: As the global markets were down in 2022, and there is still uncertainty for 2023, many industry expert are assuming that the financial industry is moving towards crisis similar to 2008. Even if that happens, if the financial consulting industry arms itself to bring business in order proactively, it will help significantly once the market rallies again in the future. Along with financial consulting industry, it will help the clients also reap the benefits of proactiveness of the financial consulting profession.
- Creating an optimum technology driven infrastructure: as I stated above, the financial consulting industry is not as technologically advanced as other consulting industries. Now is the right time to accelerate and look into creating an infrastructure with the help of technology, which will help the financial consulting companies to automate and optimize the business processes. Also, it will help to create a pool of future consultants that are not only technically sound in financial services, but technologically sound as well.
Michelle R. Hutson, CPA, ABV, ASA
Michelle R. Hutson, CPA, ABV, ASA
Senior Financial Analyst
Des Moines, IA
Michelle Hutson is a senior financial analyst at BCC Advisers, an independent business consulting firm in Iowa. She prepares business valuations for a variety of purposes, including ESOP transactions and annual ESOP administration, gift and estate planning, mergers and acquisitions, buy/sell agreements, management planning, financial reporting, SBA loans, and litigation. At BCC Advisers, Ms. Hutson leads firm-wide events and helps with the training of other analysts. Her valuation competency has been demonstrated by the designations she has earned: Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Accredited in Business Valuations (ABV), and Accredited Senior Appraiser (ASA). Ms. Hutson has assisted on approximately 600 valuations of private companies in her six years of experience with BCC Advisers.
Ms. Hutson is active in professional organizations, networking, volunteering, and representing the valuation profession. She is a board member for the American Society of Appraisers: Iowa-Nebraska Chapter, currently serving as vice president and previously as treasurer. In addition, Ms. Hutson volunteers with the Iowa Society of CPAs on the Month of Service and Young Professionals committees. She has authored several articles printed in local business publications and has presented at local universities. Ms. Hutson has been a positive influence within the profession, spending over 500 hours in civic involvement in the past five years. She is a graduate of the 2022 Greater Des Moines Leadership Institute Community Leadership Program, a program developed to ensure Central Iowa has a pipeline of strong leaders.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? I believe the most important current issue facing the profession is advising for the successful transfer of wealth and business ownership to the next generation. The largest transfer of generational wealth in American history is expected to occur within the next decades as Baby Boomers (those born between 1946 and 1964) transfer businesses and wealth to the next generation. Financial consultants have the opportunity to help make these transitions smooth.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? Increasing diversity is a major growth area for our profession. I believe financial consultants will continue to work with increasingly more diverse business owners.
Lucas Torpie serves as an analyst for Gladstone, where he is responsible for research, financial modeling, and company valuations. Prior to Gladstone, Mr. Torpie gained experience while working at FS Investments and Cigna Healthcare. Lucas graduated from Drexel University with a Bachelor of Science in Finance in 2019 (Cum Laude), and came to Gladstone’s attention as a participant in the Gladstone/Drexel Co-op program.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? One of the most pressing issues facing the financial consulting profession today is the generational transition taking place among business owners. With many owners at or near retirement age, the need for succession planning has become more critical than ever. Unfortunately, a significant number of these owners have limited or no plans in place for passing on governance of their firms, despite having spent a considerable portion of their lives building highly successful businesses. As a result, many are unsure of how to transfer control while still being fairly compensated for their contributions.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? A few key areas for growth in the financial consulting profession that are of particular interest to me include sustainable investing and wealth management. Many individuals are voicing their opinion about ESG investing, one way or another. This is causing the financial services industry (asset managers in particular) to expand their offerings to cater to these concerns. ESG investment vehicles are becoming more and more common, not just in the portfolios of institutional investors, but of retail investors alike. I also believe wealth management is an industry ripe for growth. The Baby Boomer generation is mostly at the age of retirement. There needs to be financial professionals that can help with the transition of wealth to the next generation. Wealth managers and other financial consultants can help retiring business owners with succession planning.
Noah Van Zandt, CPA, ABV
Noah Van Zandt, CPA, ABV
Ferraro, Amodio & Zarecki Forensic Accountants
Saratoga Springs, NY
Business Valuation, Forensic Accounting
Noah Van Zandt is a supervisor at Ferraro, Amodio & Zarecki, CPAs, where he specializes in forensic accounting, business valuation, and litigation support. Mr. Van Zandt is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and is Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV). Both designations were issued by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).
Mr. Van Zandt has been involved in numerous forensic accounting litigation support engagements, working on both the plaintiff and defense side. These engagements have included investigations of employee theft, SBA loan (PPP and EIDL) tracing, calculations of economic damages and lost profits, as well as forensic tracing projects.
He has also taken part in a wide variety of valuation engagements. These engagements have included valuations for division of assets related to matrimonial dissolutions, shareholder buyouts, federal gift and estate tax return filings, due diligence related to mergers and acquisitions, and exit planning consulting.
A Saratoga Springs native, Mr. Van Zandt is currently based in Washington D.C. In his free time, he enjoys playing soccer, tennis, and golf. He also enjoys watching professional soccer and collegiate basketball. Mr. Van Zandt earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics from The State University of New York at Geneseo where he also played varsity soccer.
- What would you consider to be the most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession? The most important current issue facing the financial consulting profession is keeping up with emerging technologies and the regulations created to monitor their usage. An example is artificial intelligence. It will be important to understand how companies are utilizing this technology and how that impacts the financial consultant role.
- What would you consider to be the major growth areas in the financial consulting profession? There will be significant growth in the usage of forensic accountants as experts in litigation. As financial systems and transactions become increasingly complex, it is important for forensic accountants to be able to complete complex analyses and be able to explain their conclusions in an easily understandable form for the courts.
Director of Marketing
Exit Planning Institute
As the director of marketing, Paige Wysocki is responsible for creating and accelerating the company’s marketing strategy and brand recognition across the globe. She is laser-focused on EPI’s vision of driving significant, not just successful, businesses by enhancing the CEPA brand, contributing results-driven marketing content and education, and increasing the opportunity for those advisors to be showcased as industry leaders throughout the market.
Over the last 24 months, Ms. Koerper-Wysocki has directly impacted the exit planning advisory space through her groundbreaking creation of EPI Academy, deep research on business owners, and chairing the inaugural Women in Exit Planning Symposium. Ms. Koerper-Wysocki’s most recent growth initiative was EPI Academy, an innovative learning management system, built to deliver hyper-engaging and immediately actionable education to the exit planning community. EPI Academy has expanded worldwide with hundreds of professional advisors, business owners, and their teams. They are now able to expand their skillset and knowledge, which directly impacts the success of business owners in transition and the valuation of their companies. Her work recently won a Silver Medal for International Thought Leader and a Gold Medal for Innovation in Learning Management Solutions through the Stevie Awards.
Ms. Koerper-Wysocki is also an avid researcher leading the Colorado State of Readiness Survey research in partnership with the Governor’s Office and the Department of Economic Development and International Trade. These results debuted in September as Governor Jared Polis joined the EPI team at their launch event where the state announced programming and services for small to lower middle market companies in transition directly related to these results. Lastly, Ms. Koerper-Wysocki is the chairwoman of the inaugural Women in Exit Planning Symposium, which brings together 125+ women entrepreneurs and professional advisors to tackle issues, create strategies, and build relationships amongst women within the space.
Ms. Koerper-Wysocki sits on the Executive Leadership Team of the Exit Planning Institute, leads a team of six professionals, sits on various volunteer boards, holds multiple designations within the space, and was recently awarded the Top 20 Professionals in Their 20s in Cleveland.