I attended DeVry University in order to obtain my bachelor’s degree in accounting. In February of 1999, I graduated from DeVry with honors. A little over a year and a half later, in November of 2000, I went on to pass all four parts of the CPA exam on my first attempt-a feat that less than 10% of those who took the test with me were able to accomplish.
I began my professional career as an accountant in August of 1998, While still attending DeVry. For the first seven years of my career, I worked for small CPA firms. My primary role during these years was working with small business clients and individuals. As a business accountant, I not only prepared a client’s corporate tax return, but also created and reviewed financial reports for them. I helped them to better understand, as a business or corporation, what tax deductions they were allowed. In addition, I offered Quick Books software training and support to those clients who wanted and/or needed it. Also during these years, whenever a new company became a client of the firm i was working for, I helped to establish the new business on a federal, state and local level.
Working for small CPA firms for the first part of my career burned me out. Looking for a change, I took the position of Chief Financial Officer(CFO) at a local construction company in June of 2005. I knew accepting this position would allow me the time and opportunity to start my own CPA firm. (preparing tax returns during the winter months when the construction company’s business was slower). As CFO for the construction company, I created budgets and cost reports in order to help them successfully manager their finances. I also negotiated with their vendors and bankers to further help facilitate and maintain a good financial standing for their company.
After approximately two and half years, (in December of 2007), the local construction company had to close its doors. This allowed me more time to focus my energy on developing my own CPA firm here in Kansas. As I did this, I still needed a subsequent source of income, aside from that which came from my CPA firm, in order to personally keep me afloat financially. I took a part-time position with another, smaller, local construction company, performing many of the same tasks o had done at my prior CFO job. By April 2009, through word-of-mouth and a little help from some advertising. I had grown my small CPA business to a point where i was in need of a part-time assistant. In September 2009 i hired a new client of mine, Beth Watters.. In January of 2009, the part time position i had maintained at the local construction, in addition to owning and operating my CPA firm, was no more. Since then, I have been able to devote all of my time and energy to the continued success of Kenneth R. Strough, CPA PA.