The First Last Word

BY FRED A. SIMPSON

The First “Last Word”
The JofA has every right to be pleased with its new column, The Last Word (Jul.05, page 104). I have been a reader for more than 50 years and wondered when somebody would try to humanize the publication.

You obviously fashioned a tool to help in your program to attract bright, young people into the profession. I like it. Too few high school graduates know anything about the accounting profession and the opportunities it creates. I personally wish there had been some guidance for me in 1948 when I was struggling with a decision on what to study in college.

It turns out I made the right decision, however, irrespective of how I got there. My college training led to auditing work with Peat, Marwick; then into accounting management of a publicly-held electronics company (stock options were the lure); and later to a position as VP of finance for a NYSE-listed Fortune 500 company. This was followed by positions as CEO of a construction company and an oil and gas exploration company. After “retirement” came law school and a law degree and license, and almost 20 years with a large regional law firm in Houston, where I serve as a partner.

Through the years I maintained my accounting certification and AICPA membership just to stay tuned in to the changing face of the profession.

There are plenty of other success stories out there. I’m sure you will be able to find some of the most intriguing ones for your new editorial page.

Fred A. Simpson, CPA, JD
Houston

SPONSORED REPORT

2018 financial reporting survey: Challenges and trends

Learn the top reporting challenges that emerged in a survey of more than 800 finance, accounting, and compliance professionals across the world, and compare them with your organization's obstacles.

PODCAST

How the skill set for today’s CFO is changing

Scott Simmons, a search expert for large-company CFOs, gives advice for the next generation of finance leaders and more, including which universities are regularly producing future CEOs and CFOs.