Posts Tagged ‘accountants’

A Scary-Good Time at the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission

rsj-halloween-volunteer-eventOur new Volunteer Committee was formed just in time for Halloween. The obvious theme choice was to spoil kids with costumes and candy; but we wanted to ensure that we provided a meaningful experience for both our volunteers and the trick-or-treaters.

We decided to partner with the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission for our Halloween event. They are a local organization right here in the valley with 46 children who are currently guests. Although not all the kids attended, we created personalized goodie bags for each one so that no one felt left out. RSJ volunteers spent the lunch hour on Friday stuffing the goody bags full of candy, glow sticks, erasers, Halloween stickers (regular and scratch and sniff!) and RSJ chapstick, and also carved pumpkins and made Witch Hats so that those who couldn’t attend the event over the weekend were still able to participate.

Our Committee Chair Becky Kusen coordinated the event with Christine Gregorchuk, the Program Assistant at the mission. Christine helped us to navigate the policies and guidelines of the mission so that we could ensure our event was both compliant and impactful. For example, guests are not allowed to keep food in their rooms or overnight bins; while we did fill the goody bags with a few pieces of candy, we gave the extra to the mission staff so that they could ensure that parents could give out candy to their kids in case they weren’t able to go trick-or-treating.

On the day of the event, RSJ provided a hot, catered brunch to all of the mission guests that our 10 RSJ volunteers served to each guest. We donated Halloween costumes and accessories so that everyone had the perfect costume to haunt Halloween night. A few of our volunteers even did some Halloween themed nail painting for those goblins and ghouls who needed a final touch on their costume.

In planning the activities for the event, an important requirement was the need to be sensitive to the personal space of the guests. Our committee selected games that would allow everyone to participate, that didn’t require any of the volunteers to touch the guests. The Witch Hat Ring Toss, Pumpkin Golf, “Mr. Bones” skeleton building relay, and Gourd Hockey were all chosen with this in mind.

Additionally, we also wanted to be sensitive to the waste that any of the games or activities created. For example, it would have been easy to do the “mummy wrap” as a game, but this not only may have been invasive to guests who were sensitive to their personal space, it also would have wasted a dozen or so rolls of toilet paper. We didn’t want to come into a place where the guests are being provided the most basic of resources and play games that wasted these resources. In fact, our Gourd Hockey was played with brooms which the Mission then kept for
chores!

It was really a thoughtful event. Not only did it require some of our time and resources as a firm and as individuals, it also challenged us to be intentional, compassionate and considerate of the needs of the guests. At the end of the day, serving others is about putting their needs above your own. So, it was a really rewarding challenge to meet the needs of the guests and re-think some of the typical ways we may have engineered this event.

Note from San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission

Note from San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission

Update 11-14-16: We were incredibly touched to receive a beautiful thank you card from the staff at the San Fernando Valley Rescue Mission, which included messages written by the families who participated in our event. Although we cannot share the card publicly, we can share this sweet message from the staff.

Article Featured in the September Issue of Valley Lawyer

We are thrilled to share this article by Founding Partner, Tony A. Rose, which is featured in this month’s issue of Valley Lawyer. Valley Lawyer is published 12 times a year by the San Fernando Valley Bar Association as a benefit for SFVBA membership. The magazine is designed to inform and engage SFVBA members and the legal community-at-large.

Read “Why Clients Stall and What Estate Planning Attorneys Can Do About it” now!

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Rose, Snyder & Jacobs Proudly Announces the Promotion of Outstanding Employees

The partners at Rose, Snyder & Jacobs LLP are extremely pleased to announce this year’s list of employees who have been promoted within the firm.

DAVID CHUNG, CPA has been promoted to Senior in the Audit & Assurance Department. David has been with RSJ for 2 years. He previously worked for Mr. Chow Restaurant Group in Beverly Hills. He attended USC where he received a B. S. in Accounting.

TIFFANY GONZALEZ has been promoted to Senior in the Audit & Assurance Department. Tiffany has been with RSJ for 2 years. She graduated from LMU in 2014 with a B.S. in Accounting. Before joining RSJ she worked for Woodward Group in the Accounting Department.

JESS BROWN, MBA, CPA has been promoted to Manager in the Tax Department. Jess joined RSJ in November 2013 after a career in both public and private accounting and finance. He attended New York University where he received a B.S. in Accounting and an MBA in Finance at the Stern School of Business.

LINDSAY ROSS, CPA has been promoted to Manager in the Tax Department. After a varied career throughout the country with Grant Thornton LP, she joined RSJ in January 2014. She graduated from Northeastern University in Boston with a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration and Accounting.

ANNA BAGARIAN, CPA has been promoted to Supervisor in the Tax Department. Anna started with RSJ in January 2015. She graduated from CSUN with a degree in Finance and Real Estate. Previously, she worked with Holthouse, Carlin and Van Tright.

Please join us in congratulating these outstanding individuals on their accomplishments thus far, and acknowledge the challenges they have in leading us forward.

For more about career opportunities with Rose, Snyder & Jacobs, please visit us here.

When “Doing the Right Thing” Becomes Inconvenient

What do you do when your core values go against the grain of ethics?

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Here’s an example: Imagine that your mother calls. You chat for a while, and then your mother asks to speak to your spouse. You know that these conversations never go well. They end with your spouse venting in frustration about your mother’s antics.

“Tell her I’m not here,” your spouse whispers.

You value your spouse. You certainly value peace and harmony.

But the ethics of it require you to lie. You are challenged to either violate your own values or violate the code of ethics.

Azamat Tazhayakov, Dias Kadyrbayev and Robel Phillipos found themselves in a values-versus-ethics situation when they removed and disposed of a backpack from Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s dorm room.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was the suspected Boston Marathon bombing suspect who was killed during the search for the perpetrators. His roommates were later sent to jail for destroying evidence in Tsarnaev’s backpack.

They certainly mistook the value of friendship as more important than the ethics of honesty and reality. At the time, though, they probably thought they were doing the right thing.

Their situation is obviously more severe than the hypothetical mother-versus-spouse situation I asked you to consider …

But does the severity of an ethical violation matter? Is it okay to abandon ethics when we are talking about little things, so long as you stay ethical when it truly counts?

I argue that the little things define you. If you are willing to abandon your ethics when the consequences are minor, imagine what you will do when the consequences are major!

This is a common theme in my work as a CPA. Accountants value their clients. They want to serve them well. And every day, accountants are given an opportunity to cheat a little here and a little there.

But cheating a little bit is a slippery slope. It makes cheating easier and easier, until one day, cheating becomes the norm. What do these folks do when they are presented with a major ethical decision, one that could either result in a major boom or a major consequence?

Why they cheat, of course!

Your ethics are a code by which you decide to live. They define what type of person you are. If you decide that you are going to be honest, except when it is inconvenient to do so, you have decided that you are comfortable being a dishonest person.

A true test of your commitment to living an ethical life is when you behave ethically when it is inconvenient to do so.

What do you think? Is it this black-and-white, or is there some gray area here?

Jake Jacobs Featured in San Fernando Valley Business Journal’s “Power Accountants” Issue (May 30, 2016)

Jake Jacobs, featured "Power Accountant" in San Fernando Valley Business Journal

Jake Jacobs, featured “Power Accountant” in San Fernando Valley Business Journal

We are thrilled to share this special issue of the San Fernando Valley Business Journal featuring the Valley’s “Power Accountants” including our own Founding Partner, Jake Jacobs.