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Silicon Valley/San Jose Chapter

A blog for and by a community of professionals


President's Message

Timing Is Everything

October 27, 2014

By Karl-Heinz Lachnit, CPA

 How do we increase CalCPA membership? We know that membership is vital to our success as a chapter. But what wasn’t clear to me until I was the chapter treasurer a few years ago is that obtaining new members is all about timing. Our key performance indicators, which is our tool for measuring membership, tells us that most members join within the first two years of becoming a licensed CPA. This is not to say we should not try and get new members who have been licensed more than several years, but it does show where we can get maximum membership. This is where we will also find our new leaders for the future.

CalCPA realized this and, in 2003, launched the first-year-free program to candidate CPAs to obtain and retain new members at this critical juncture. In 2003 when the program started, only 3 percent of the new licensees became CalCPA members. Every year after that, up until 2010, the new members (as a percentage of all licensees) increased at a rapid rate. By 2010, 53 percent of new licensees became members, which is a testament to the success of this program. However, since 2010, every year has shown a gradual decrease in new members as a percentage to new licenses. As of July 2014, only 30 percent of new licensees became CalCPA members. Why the decrease?

CalCPA has done a great job of giving free memberships to students and CPA candidates. This provides the candidate CPA and students the opportunity to experience the benefits we have to offer at CalCPA.

Read the rest of this entry »

Chapter News

SVSJ Attorneys, Bankers and CPAs (ABC) Fallfest

Tuesday, Nov. 4
Time: 4:30-7:30 p.m.
Cost: $60/person
Location: The GlassHouse

Attorneys, bankers, CPAs and other financial professionals are invited to attend this fall’s foremost networking event at The Glasshouse, Silicon Valley’s new, premiere event space. Bring your business cards and come prepared for an enjoyable evening.

Learn more and register.

SVSJ Santa Cruz ABC Fall Event: Eat, Drink & Profit!

Tuesday, Nov. 18
Time: 4:30–7:30 p.m.
Location: Seymour Marine Discovery Center, 100 Shaffer Rd., Santa Cruz
Cost: $30 by Nov. 17; $40 at the door.

Expand your professional network by attending our fall Attorneys, Bankers and CPAs Mixer for our members and other professionals in the Santa Cruz area. This fall’s networking event will be held at the Seymour Marine Discovery Center in Santa Cruz.

Learn more and register.

Come to the New-member Orientation and Maximize Membership Value

This meeting, held one hour before our San Jose ABC Fallfest, will give you an overview of the chapter and orient you on where you fit in and how to boost your career with the many benefits of membership. You’ll meet chapter leaders and get a snapshot of our special interest groups. As an added bonus, new members of the chapter can join in on the fun at the ABC Fallfest immediately following, free of charge (a $50 value). This offer is good for members who have joined since Nov. 1, 2013. Restrictions might apply. Email program associate Stephanie Stewart to register.

Lifetime Achievement Award Nominations

Are there chapter members whom you admire or find to be an inspiration, and who best epitomize a lifetime of achievement either within or outside of our profession? If so, then be sure to nominate them for our Lifetime Achievement Award.

Past winners include Harvey L. Armstrong (2014), Howard K. Loomis Jr. (2013), Griffith Lewis (2012), Ben Mozzetti Jr. (2011), Patricia E. Janes (2010), William (Bill) Lewis (2009), Anthony S.C. Yau (2008), Robert A. Petersen (2007) and Joseph P. Mori (2006). All have been leaders with a legacy in our profession, as well as tireless and invaluable volunteers in our community.

Send your nomination by completing this form describing their accomplishments to Dan Morris or chapter program associate Stephanie Stewart. Nominations must be received by Dec. 1. This year’s winner will be recognized at Honorees Night, which will be held Thursday, Jan. 29.

Opportunity for CPAs With a Passion for Rail Transportation

The California Trolley & Railroad Corporation, located in San Jose History Park, is looking for a CPA to join the board and be treasurer. Its mission is to preserve and reflect the legacy of rail transportation in the Santa Clara Valley. The group has restored a number of historic trolley cars, and railroad engines and cars.

If you’re interested, contact David K. Ginsborg via email or call (408) 299-5572.

CalCPA News

2015 CalCPA Campus Ambassador Program

Help spread the word about CalCPA and the CPA profession—applications are being accepted for the CalCPA Campus Ambassador Program. Campus Ambassadors are students passionate about pursuing a career in accounting and becoming CPAs and will spend approximately 20 hours of work per semester focused on:

  • Building awareness of FREE CalCPA student membership and benefits to students and educators;
  • Increasing visibility of CalCPA on campus; and
  • Strengthening ties between local CalCPA chapters and colleges/universities.

Campus Ambassadors will receive a stipend of $750 each semester and free admittance to CalCPA chapter events.

Eligibility requirements and application are available online.

Become a CalCPA Officer, Education Foundation Trustee

California CPAs are the driving force behind one of the world’s largest economies. Isn’t it time you put your leadership skills to use for the betterment of the CPA profession?

The CalCPA Council/AICPA Council 2015-16 application period is open, as is the application period for CalCPA Education Foundation trustees.

More information, including position descriptions, nomination criteria and nomination form can be found online.

Both CalCPA officer and Foundation trustees nominations are due Dec. 1.

Coming to Your Chapter: Professional Issues Update

The Professional Issues Update roadshow will foster a greater sense of information sharing among CPAs in your area—with a group of experts coming to your chapter, providing a customized update based on geographic, industry and professional trends.

CPA professionals, including CalCPA leadership, will cover tax issues, legislative and political activities, trends related to risks and liabilities for CPAs and a review of the Affordable Healthcare Act’s impact on employers and employees. Additional topics are also being identified.

Register for your chapter’s update.


Membership News

Waste No Food

Waste No Food is a non-profit, started by 15 year old Kiran Sridhar, that provides a web-based "marketplace" allowing excess food to be donated from the food service industry to qualified charities that work with the needy.

Monthly Archives

Local Interest Groups

From technical committees to discussion groups, the Silicon Valley San Jose Chapter offers a variety of opportunities to exchange information and connect with your peers. Lists committees or other information within the chapter.

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Contact Us

Division Director:
Membership and Strategic Programming
Jill Gorman
(650) 522-3204

Program Associate:
Stephanie Stewart
(408) 983-1122


1800 Gateway Drive, Ste. 200
San Mateo, CA 94404-4072

Chapter Leadership