Connect magazine - March 2014

Many happy returns

Catching up with two notable EY tax alumni

  • Share

At some point in their careers, many accounting professionals have to decide: will I work in auditing or tax?

In this issue of Connect, we talk to two EY alumni who heard the call to the tax side early on. Their stories are quite different. However, each describes the lasting impact of their time in the EY Tax practice on their lives and careers.

Cindy Rooks: easy(going) rider

EY - Cindy Rooks

Don’t let Cindy Rooks’ mild manner deceive you. Yes, she’s a grandmother and Sunday school teacher. And yes, she loves reading and spending time with her family. But as Senior Director of Tax for Harley-Davidson, this EY tax alumna is passionate about helping to drive one of the oldest, most successful and most iconic brands in US history.


Dave Kautter: man on a mission

EY - Dave Kautter

For 33 years, Dave Kautter, former Ernst & Young LLP US Director of National Tax, helped to build one of the world’s largest and most successful tax practices. Today, as Chair of the Board of the Washington National Cathedral, he’s working to rebuild and preserve one of the nation’s most cherished and iconic landmarks.


The makings of a great tax practice

A message from Kate Barton - Americas Vice Chair, Tax

EY has the number one brand when it comes to tax services in the Americas. We are also the tax growth leader among the Big Four and have the leading share of “voice” in the US media.

As leader of the EY Americas Tax practice, I am, naturally, highly pleased with all of these first-place rankings. At the same time, I am very humbled.

Even as the firm embarks on Vision 2020, I am reminded almost daily of the incredible legacy of leadership entrusted to me. I think of the entrepreneurialism and creativity of my mentors, including such Tax practice alumni as Bill Lipton, Jim Henderson, Mike Kelley and Bob Allen.

I also learned much about business from audit professionals such as Jim DiStasio, Peter Nurczynski, Ken Watchmaker and John Mahoney. These people were not just great technicians and leaders, but they were also incredible teachers.

I’m a big believer in paying it forward. For this reason, I think one of the greatest gifts our EY forebears left us is the apprenticeship model of developing our next generation of professionals and leaders.

My mission is to continue that legacy. Whether a person stays with EY 3 years or 30, I want to do all I can to help deliver on the EY promise to provide an exceptional experience that lasts a lifetime. And that includes staying connected with our EY alumni, tax or otherwise.

A few weeks ago, I was sitting in the airport and wearing a shirt with the new EY logo. A gentleman approached me and identified himself as a former EY partner. As we chatted, I could see in his eyes and hear in his voice the pride he takes in being an EY alum. It made me want to work even harder to make the EY Tax practice the very best it can be. But more importantly, it spoke to me about the power of staying connected. I hope you will.

EY - Kate Barton, Americas Vice Chair - Tax

Kate Barton,
Americas Vice Chair — Tax