Q. What can we learn from the past in our profession?
Rely on your sixth sense to tell you when something isn't right. As you mature within the profession, there's a little bell that sounds and you begin to follow it instinctually. If something doesn't feel right, it generally isn't. Learn to trust that intuition.
Q. What accounting law or regulation would you like to see changed?
Repeal or reform the Alternative Minimum Tax.
Q. Who is/was the most influential person in your life?
My grandmother. I feel her presence all the time; all I have to do is step into my garden. She was very principled and independent—kind of before her time, in a way. As I get older, my appreciation for her grows.
Beyond the Boardroom
What do you do to relax when you're not working?
Spend time with my son. He adds a lot of balance to my life.
Renting a cabin at Lake Tahoe and being with my son. It's a tradition with us. We spend our time hiking and swimming in the lake. That's my idea of the ideal vacation.
It's something my dad told me. Sometimes in the profession, the best way to relieve stress is "Just get the work done." And remember, "You can only do one thing at a time." Focus and get satisfaction out of doing one thing at a time.
What are your hobbies?
Hiking - I belong to a couple of hiking clubs - and playing the piano. I was a music major in college but switched to business in my third year. Playing the piano is kind of like typing; you never forget how to play. I also enjoy doing fixer-upper projects around the home and love to garden.
Most prized possession:
A little music box that my dad gave my grandmother. It's one of those old-fashioned wind-up music boxes and it plays, "Papa, Won't You Dance With Me?"
The Key to the House
Word that best describes you:
Deserted island wish list:
Magazines and sunscreen and, of course, my son for good company.