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Connect April 2015 The magazine for EY alumni Sarah Kauss building a better bottle and a greener world at S’well Rich Jones speaks his mind on veterans’ affairs Jimmy Barge a starring role at Lionsgate Jennifer Cabalquinto playing full court with the NBA’s Golden State Warriors Steve Howe and Kelly Grier talk about the EY people promise Frank Mahoney and Tom Hough welcoming EY’s newly named and recently retired Vice Chairs of Assurance Building better boards Corporate board directors and EY alumnae Olivia Kirtley , Betsy Rafael and Barbara Stymiest sound off on strategy, digital transformation, cybersecurity, diversity and other top board matters.

The magazine for EY alumni Building better boards · The magazine for EY alumni Sarah Kauss building a better bottle and a greener world at S’well Rich Jones ... This program identifies

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  • Article headingConnectApril 2015The magazine for EY alumni

    Sarah Kaussbuilding a better bottle and a greener world at Swell

    Rich Jonesspeaks his mind on veterans affairs

    Jimmy Bargea starring role at Lionsgate

    Jennifer Cabalquintoplaying full court with the NBAs Golden State Warriors

    Steve Howe and Kelly Griertalk about the EY people promise

    Frank Mahoney and Tom Houghwelcoming EYs newly named and recently retired Vice Chairs of Assurance

    Building better boardsCorporate board directors and EY alumnaeOlivia Kirtley,Betsy RafaelandBarbara Stymiestsound off on strategy, digital transformation, cybersecurity, diversity and other top board matters.

  • 2015 EYGM Limited. All Rights Reserved. ED0116

    Source: Global Gender Gap Report 2014, World Economic Forum

  • Stephen R. Howe, Jr. EY Americas Managing Partner and Managing Partner, Ernst & Young LLP (US)

    As you read the stories of some of EYs amazing alumni in this issue, you will also notice a theme: EYs desire to work with our alumni, as well as our clients and communities, to help build a better working world.

    In our cover story, we talk with Olivia Kirtley, Betsy Rafael and Barbara Stymiest about the issues they face as corporate board members. They share a desire to make a positive difference and to serve as role models, especially for women. That goes hand-in-hand with a number of EY initiatives. For example, to support our alumni serving on boards, weve created the EY Center for Board Matters, which engages with boards, audit committee members and investors. And to promote women in the workplace, we recently launched Women. Fast forward, through which EY will act as a catalyst to accelerate the closing of the global gender gap.

    I think youll enjoy learning about Sarah Kauss, founder and CEO of Swell, one of Fortunes 40 under 40, and our first alumna selected for EYs Entrepreneurial Winning Women program. This program identifies high-potential women entrepreneurs whose businesses show real potential to scale and then helps them do it.

    Youll hear from alum Rich Jones, Executive Vice President, General Tax Counsel and Chief Veteran Officer at CBS, about his passion for improving the lives of disabled veterans. And well share some ways EY is helping this special group.

    We introduce you to two recently appointed EY leaders, Kelly Grier, Americas Vice Chair Talent, and Frank Mahoney, Americas Vice Chair Assurance, and say farewell and thank you to Tom Hough, Franks immediate predecessor. We deeply appreciate the extraordinary breadth of Toms contributions to EY over his 37-year career. Finally, youll meet Alumni Council members Adrienne White and Kim McGarry and learn what drives them to strengthen the alumni community.

    Every day, I am inspired by knowing and working with such an exceptional group of EY people and alumni. I hope you share my belief that together we are making a difference, and that we can, in fact, build a better working world.

    Thank you for all you are doing on behalf of EY.

    Building a better working world



    Connect April 2015 1


  • In this issue 04On the coverStrategy needs to take center stage in the boardroom, say seasoned corporate directors Betsy Rafael, Olivia Kirtley and Barbara Stymiest. We convened the three EY alumnae at Bloombergs corporate headquarters in New York City for a spirited discussion of some of the hot topics facing boards today, including digital transformation, cybersecurity and board diversity. They also provide some tips for those looking to join a board.

    14 20 28 32 40 44

    Building better boards

    2 alumni.ey.com

  • Features14 A fair challenge Get to know Frank Mahoney, EYs new Vice Chair Assurance, and find

    out why he thinks the audit profession is more vital now than ever.

    17 Closest to the pin As Frank Mahoney settles into his new role, we welcome his predecessor,

    Tom Hough, as one of our newest alumni. Find out what Toms up to at the United States Golf Association.

    20 A thirst for excellence Can a reusable water bottle be both fashionable and environmentally

    friendly? Discover why alumna Sarah Kausss Swell bottle has been described as eco-chic.

    28 It all comes down to people Kelly Grier, EYs new Americas Vice Chair Talent, and Steve Howe,

    Americas Managing Partner, talk about the power and importance of EYs people culture.

    32 Starring roles While alumni Jimmy Barge and Jennifer Cabalquinto are CFOs of two

    very different organizations hes with Lionsgate and shes with the NBAs Golden State Warriors they share the drive to entertain.

    40 A call to action CBS exec, EY alum and wounded military veteran Rich Jones shares his

    point of view on the plight of many of our nations veterans.

    44 Alumni council members in focus Chicago Alumni Council member Kim McGarry and Atlanta Council

    member Adrienne White discuss options trading, half-marathons and their desire to build a strong EY alumni family.

    50 Alumni Relations around the world Travel with us to Argentina, one of the worlds top developing nations,

    and learn what they mean when they say, Alumni, ser parte siempre.

    News54 Alumni news and new alumni snapshots Highlighting recent achievements of your friends and colleagues

    59 Events gallery A snapshot of recent alumni events throughout the Americas

    EY | Assurance | Tax | Transactions | Advisory

    About EY EY is a global leader in assurance, tax, transaction and advisory services. The insights and quality services we deliver help build trust and confidence in the capital markets and in economies the world over. We develop outstanding leaders who team to deliver on our promises to all of our stakeholders. In so doing, we play a critical role in building a better working world for our people, for our clients and for our communities.

    EY refers to the global organization, and may refer to one or more, of the member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited, each of which is a separate legal entity. Ernst & Young Global Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, does not provide services to clients. For more information about our organization, please visit ey.com.

    Ernst & Young LLP is a client-serving member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited operating in the US.

    EY Canada refers to Ernst & Young LLP, which is a client-serving member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited operating in Canada.

    EY Argentina refers to the client-serving member firms of Ernst & Young Global Limited operating in Argentina.

    2015 EYGM Limited. All Rights Reserved. Proprietary and confidential. Do not distribute without written permission.

    EYG no. QQ0391 ED 0316.

    The opinions of third parties set out in this publication are not necessarily the opinions of the global EY organization or its member firms. Moreover, they should be viewed in the context of the time they were expressed.

    In line with EYs commitment to minimize its impact on the environment, this document has been printed on paper with a high recycled content.

    April 2015ConnectThe magazine for EY alumni

    Editor-in-Chief: Jeff AndersonManaging Editor: Jay SeitherWriters: Jeff Anderson, Anne Lampert, Jay Seither, Eboni ThomasCreative Director: Donald BattingContributing Editor: Ellen LaskPhotography: Jon Gayman, Marcus Krause, Chris Savas, Robert Thomas

    Connect magazine is printed in the US by Great Lakes Integrated.

    For further information on Connect, please contact Jeff Anderson, Americas Director, Alumni Relations, at [email protected] or +1 404 817 4875.

    50Connect April 2015 3

  • EY alumnae Olivia Kirtley, Betsy Rafael and Barbara Stymiest have truly scaled the corporate ladder. They serve or have served in the C-suites of many of the worlds top business organizations. And together, they have dozens of years experience serving on the boards of leading companies. We wanted to explore with them what they are seeing in the boardroom today.

    Building betterThree EY alumnae discuss board service and their roles as women in business

    We convened a half-day session with our three EY alumnae at Bloomberg LPs world headquarters in Manhattan. Mark Manoff, EY Americas Vice Chair and EY Center for Board Matters leader, facilitated. Joining the conversation were Steve Howe, EY Americas Managing Partner, and Karyn Twaronite, EY Global Diversity & Inclusiveness Officer. Our EY Center for Board Matters is on the verge of entering into an exciting new global sponsorship with Bloomberg Media that will amplify the Centers brand around the world as well as with board and audit committee members.

    What is job #1 for boards?

    How can boards best evaluate their performance?

    What is the role of the board in meeting such digital threats as cybersecurity?

    Why should diversity and inclusiveness remain top of mind?

    What is the best advice for someone who is considering participation on a board?

    Mark Manoff Karyn TwaroniteSteve Howe

    words: Anne Lampert, Jay Seither photos: Jonathan Gayman

    4 alumni.ey.com

  • Building better boards

    Betsy Rafael Barbara StymiestOlivia Kirtley

    Strategy must take center stage in the boardroom, our alumnae agree. Barbara Stymiest, former CEO of the Toronto Stock Exchange and a long-time board member at BlackBerry, stresses the importance of strategy, which she describes as both the biggest challenge for management and the board to get right and essential to survival: If you dont make the right choices, youre not around. If you dont transform, you dont survive.

    Survival of the fittestIn every era, keeping the board focused on the things that really matter takes great effort. Today, with global interconnectedness,

    the digital economy and a dynamic regulatory environment, its even more difficult to keep strategy at the center of it all.

    In the view of Betsy Rafael, who, in addition to serving on multiple corporate boards, has served in senior finance positions at companies including Apple and Cisco, You cant lose sight of whether you are doing the right thing strategically whether the focus is transformation, growth, international expansion or another objective.

    Olivia Kirtley, with experience on five public and private boards, agrees that, It is easy to get bogged down while making sure that youre doing your job on the regulatory front and on other matters. But, in addition to

    innovation and growth, you must absolutely stay focused on the strategy you must protect that time.

    The most effective boards, she adds, are those that manage their time and resources to ensure that strategy remains at the forefront of discussions. Rafael, who serves on boards of companies at varying stages in their development, asserts that keeping strategy first comes down to the level of sophistication and maturity of the board.

    In considering the boards ability to lead, our alumnae are unanimous in their belief that direct and frequent communication with the CEO is the best approach. When the corporate secretary introduces a new regulatory matter

    If you dont make the right choices, youre

    not around. If you dont

    transform, you dont survive.

    Connect April 2015 5

  • Building better boards

    In her own words, Barbara Stymiest has come full circle since her earliest days at EY. Her very first audit client was Queen Elizabeth Hospital, a not-for-profit rehabilitation institution in Toronto that later became part of the University Health Network. Stymiest subsequently joined the Network board and remains very active in its fundraising efforts.

    Today, she considers the growth of the aging population one of the biggest issues facing people in many developed countries. She recently became a member of the board of AGE-WELL, Canadas technology and aging network. The acronym stands for Aging Gracefully in All Environments using Technology to Facilitate Wellness, Engagement and Long Life. She describes the organization as an incubator of innovative technological solutions to help people maintain their quality of life and independence.

    The technology aspect of AGE-WELL also resonates with Stymiest because of her connection with BlackBerry. Her path

    BarbaraStymiestFormer EY Canada partner

    Last EY office: Toronto

    Board service BlackBerry Ltd. (2007present: 2012 and 2013

    Chair; Audit & Risk Management Committee Chair; Compensation, Nomination & Governance Committee)

    George Weston Limited (2011present: Audit Committee Chair)

    Sun Life Financial Inc. (2012present)

    TMX Group Inc. (19932004)

    Symcor Inc. (200411: 200711 Chair)

    Business Development Bank of Canada (200204)

    Previous positions CEO, TMX Group Inc.

    Executive Vice President and CFO, BMO Nesbitt Burns

    Group Head of Strategy, Treasury & Corporate Services, Royal Bank of Canada

    Awards/distinguished service Vice-Chair, AGE-WELL

    Trustee, University Health Network

    Chair, Canadian Institute for Advanced Research

    Chair, Advisory Board for the Ivey Institute for Leadership

    or another new agenda item, it tends to be after the fact. Stymiest reminds us that, A high-performing company needs a high-performing board, and a high-performing board doesnt just happen; it takes a lot of work on both sides, with the chair of the board working alongside the CEO to drive change.

    Is there a gold standard for boards? How do they gauge their effectiveness?Maintaining engagement with the CEO is an ongoing task for board members. But it is only one of many challenges that todays boards must tackle. Among these is the way the board assesses the quality of its performance in todays environment. Our panelists expressed strong opinions on this issue: they agree that, however the assessment is performed, it needs to be thorough and deliberate.

    Kirtley describes her boards assessment process as very rigorous. With the written evaluation in hand, the lead director or the head of the governance committee follows up with each board member, one on one, probing for

    additional commentary on whats working well and whats not. What follows is a very robust discussion at both the committee and the board level. Subsequently, the board acts on whatever issues or enhancement opportunities need to be addressed.

    In her varied experience across the tech sector, Rafael has seen boards take different approaches. One board undertakes a very formal process, she notes. The goal is to really understand the feedback, and what we are going to do about it. Another board on which she serves is more informal, but equally effective, as the process involves a lively and penetrating discussion among multiple board members about what could be improved. The group then takes action based on the conclusions of the discussion.

    Another technique that boards can consider is the input of an outside expert. Stymiest describes a recent experience with one of her

    There are fewer people willing to take a chance, including the search firms, on someone who is new.

    continued on page 9

    6 alumni.ey.com

  • into the tech sector began at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. By then, Stymiest had achieved the distinction of being the first woman in North America to lead a stock exchange. She recalls, I joined the board of the Toronto Stock Exchange, subsequently becoming the vice chair and later the chair of the board in 1997. When she finished her term as chair, she was approached to become the chief executive. She is proud of her achievement. If I had been the token woman, I would not have been asked to be vice chair and then chair. But having proved myself among my peers on the board, the board had the confidence in me to lead the exchange.

    At Davos, Stymiest began what would become a strong relationship with then-Research in Motion (currently Blackberry) co-CEO Jim Balsillie, a fellow Canadian and EY alumnus. She joined the company board in 2007 and stayed. Stymiest was a steady hand during 2012 and 2013, serving as board chair as the company transitioned from co-CEO founder to restructuring (to refinance the organization) to bringing in a new CEO, John Chen, who became executive chair. Although Stymiest passed the baton to Chen, she has remained very involved as chair of the Audit Committee.

    To me, the rules of engagement are very clear. The board engages with shareholders on governance matters only.

    Connect April 2015 7

  • Article heading

    Olivia Kirtleys accounting career began in the EY Louisville office when the late partner Chet Shelley interviewed and then hired her literally on the spot. The year was 1972, a time when only a handful of women were being hired into the profession. Mr. Shelley was willing to take a chance on me, says Kirtley. Today, more than 40 years later, she still feels a huge responsibility to help open doors for others.

    Despite being among the first woman professionals at EY, Kirtley reports witnessing many biases against women and other minorities throughout her illustrious career in public accounting, public and private industry and service on corporate boards. My attitude has always been that its unfortunate that some people have that bias, which is often an unconscious bias, she comments. However, it was those very biases that pushed Kirtley to meet or exceed expectations. Did I try harder to pass my CPA exam on first sitting knowing

    OliviaKirtleyFormer EY senior manager

    Last EY office: Atlanta, Georgia

    Board service Isolyzer Company, Inc. (199798)

    Alderwoods Group, Inc. (200206)

    Lancer Corporation (19992006)

    Papa Johns International, Inc. (2003present: Audit Committee Chair; Compensation Committee)

    Res-Care, Inc. (1998present: Audit Committee Chair; Governance and Nominating Committee)

    US Bancorp (2006present: Audit Committee Chair; Compensation Committee; Executive Committee)

    Previous positions Business consultant

    CFO and Treasurer, Vermont American Corporation (including subsequent joint venture with Emerson Electric Co. and Robert Bosch GmbH)

    Awards/distinguished service Chair, American Institute of Certified Public

    Accountants (AICPA)

    Chair, AICPA Board of Examiners

    President and Board Chair, International Federation of Accountants (IFAC)

    Faculty member, The Conference Board Directors Institute We all have different

    experiences and backgrounds that make us more sensitive to something, whether its talent development, succession planning or diversity and inclusion in the C-suite.

    8 alumni.ey.com

  • boards, which invited in an outside party well-regarded in the country in the area of governance. This person spent an hour or two with every director individually. While the board survey provided a framework for the conversation, the ensuing discussion was far richer and more wide-ranging. Whatever the method, its very, very important for the chairman or the lead director to actually act on the findings. Stymiest also appreciates the opportunity to meet one on one with the board chairman to gain perspective on her own performance as a board member.

    Board makeup and alignment with the changing needs of the corporation is a hot topic in governance circles today. Rafael introduces the area of cybersecurity as an example of subject matter that boards need to own you need to have people who have the capabilities to engage in cybersecurity at a different level from the rest of the board, advises Rafael. The stakes in the game are higher than ever, she points out, with proprietary data such as intellectual property and individuals social security numbers stored on the cloud.

    Managing in a disruptive worldThe digital transformation of virtually every business transaction and activity has reshaped the role of executives and board members worldwide. Technology, with all its benefits, has disrupted commerce in every conceivable way and can create havoc for a company in a matter of seconds. Not surprisingly, cybersecurity was a substantive topic of discussion for our alumnae. Cyber attacks and the serious damage they can cause are driving boards of some companies to request an assessment from professional

    a generation of women behind me were going to be judged by my work? Absolutely, I felt that pressure. By the way, not only did Kirtley pass the exam the first time, but she was the only one in her hiring class who did.

    Kirtley served as the first woman chair of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) in the late 1990s and as chair of the AICPA Board of Examiners during the three-year conversion of the CPA exam to a computer-based exam. Today, Kirtley keeps pushing new boundaries. She is presently serving as the first woman president of the International Federation of Accountants, the global accountancy organization that represents 180 member

    bodies in 130 countries and supports four international standard-setting boards (auditing and assurance, ethics, education and public sector accounting). In this role, she recently found herself in Rome addressing Pope Francis in Italian as part of the World Congress of Accounting. While that event was certainly a career highlight, for Kirtley its part of a larger mission: Its really important to a lot of women around the world to see that a woman can do this, she remarks. Career-wise, Ive attained most of what Ive set out to do. But this profession has given me so much opportunity now its my turn to give back and help others around the world take advantage of the opportunities that were not so available when I began.

    continued on page 10

    continued from page 6 The EY Center for Board Matters: your hub for board and audit committee resources

    The EY Center for Board Matters (CBM) is committed to bringing together and engaging with boards, audit committee members and investors to exchange ideas and insights. Using our professional competencies, relationships and proprietary corporate governance database, which includes historical and current governance data for more than 3,000 public companies listed in the US, we are able to identify trends and emerging governance issues. We deliver timely and balanced insights, data-rich content and practical tools and analysis to boards, audit committees, institutional investors and others interested in governance topics.

    Visit ey.com/boardmatters to find a wide spectrum of information for boards and audit committees on topics such as the audit committees role in disclosure effectiveness, independent board leadership structures, and the boards role in tax oversight. While there, click on subscribe to automatically receive the latest publications from the CBM. Stay up-to-date on the latest board and audit committee trends by following the EY Center for Board Matters magazine on our FlipBoard app. Download the app from your preferred mobile app provider and search for board matters.

    visit: ey.com/boardmatters

    services firms that specialize in defending businesses that have suffered such assaults. Kirtley reports that, Companies are asking what structures and security measures were in place at the time of recent attacks, how companies managed through the events and how the board was involved or not involved in fulfilling their oversight responsibilities. She remarks that knowing the facts surrounding events that have occurred is extremely helpful for lessons learned.

    Cybersecurity is one of many potential areas of knowledge that boards may need to cultivate. The panelists agreed on the importance of recognizing that the extent of board members skills and experiences is not

    always apparent from a resume. Whether a company is transitioning to new markets or new channels of commerce or undergoing other major changes, the board or the governance committee needs to address the adequacy of the skill sets available among its board members.

    Boards must fully understand the range of knowledge and skills of their directors. Stymiest believes that, Its part of director orientation to really understand what kinds of skills a new member brings. To underscore her point, she notes that one of the boards she serves on now includes a skills matrix in the proxy circular. Speaking specifically about the accounting

    Connect April 2015 9

  • Building better boards

    When boards are open to multiple perspectives, theyre largely going to end up with a better answer.

    professionals she has known, Kirtley finds that board aspirants often do not present a compelling narrative highlighting their relevant accomplishments They lack a narrative that goes beyond the numbers, she says.

    When the situation is reversed, and a board member is no longer adding value, the most effective boards address the situation in a forthright and timely manner, our panel agrees. For the best interest of the company,

    * EY Americas Managing Partner Steve Howe is one of the 27 founding chairpersons and CEO supporters of the 30% Club in the US.

    continued from page 9

    EY acts to fast forward gender parity

    It will take until 2095 for women to achieve gender parity in the workplace, according to the World Economic Forums Global Gender Gap Report 2014. At the World Economic Forum in Davos in January, EY announced a new global campaign designed to draw attention to the global gap in gender parity. The campaign, Women. Fast forward, is designed to consolidate all EYs internal and external efforts to promote women, galvanize support from business and government leaders to accelerate change and underscore EYs leading role in championing women in the workplace.

    Womens advancement is a prominent discussion point at WEF and in the wider business world, said Uschi Schreiber, EY Global Vice Chair Markets, Chair Global Accounts Committee and executive co-sponsor of Women. Fast forward. Through Women. Fast forward, we intend to catalyze a dynamic exchange on how business and government can work together to speed up the clock to advance women and, in the process, create greater economic prosperity for everyone. The launch of Women. Fast forward included a new report that identifies key accelerators to help women move forward and a website (ey.com/womenfastforward) that brings together EYs resources for women and promotes dialogue and learning around closing the gender parity gap.

    EY Global Chairman and CEO Mark Weinberger explained the need for speed in achieving gender parity. Women are half of our population, and at EY they are half of our workforce, said Weinberger. The global economy wont succeed, and we wont succeed, if women are not engaged. We wouldnt wait 80 years to implement any other business imperative, so why are we waiting on this one?

    Learn more about Women. Fast forward: ey.com/womenfastforward | #womenfastforwardWhat do you think? Have a thought or comment about Women. Fast forward? Wed love to hear from you. Please contact Lisa Schiffman at [email protected]

    they say, someone needs to initiate the difficult conversation. Stymiest is surprised at the small number of board members who are told that their services are no longer needed. And yet those conversations have to happen. Thats one reason its important to have a strong governance committee, Kirtley emphasizes. Its a very important job, she says. Highly functioning boards will tend to have those tough conversations and act courageously, and theyre expected to do so.

    Diversity and inclusiveness 2.0While our three alumnae have found great success in their respective fields, each remains strongly convinced of the importance of diversity and inclusiveness in the boardroom and in business in general. Kirtley, who is the first woman president of the International Federation of Accountants, points out that each person walks into the boardroom with different experiences. Women bring a unique set of experiences and challenges they have had to deal with in the business world. She remarks, If half of your talent pool are women, you want to draw from the best of that entire pool.

    In Canada, regulators have taken a proactive route to diversity. Stymiest notes that Canadian issuers in the province of Ontario are required to disclose the gender diversity of their boards of directors and in executive officer positions. The rules take effect with the 2015 proxy season. You have to describe what policies you have and what targets you have, explains Stymiest, as well as what progress youre making toward those targets for both management and the board. Stymiest was the first woman

    to head the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). At the time of the Connect meeting, she had just been invited to join Canadas first chapter of the 30% Club, a group launched in the UK in 2010 whose goal is for FTSE-100 corporations to include at least 30% women on their boards by the end of 2015.*

    Diversity and inclusiveness transcends gender and has multiple dimensions what Stymiest calls diversity writ large. In Canada, where weve built the nation

    10 alumni.ey.com

  • through very open immigration policies, we have a very diverse number of cultures in our country and in our workplace. That diversity and inclusion writ large is the right direction.

    Betsy Rafael, the first woman named to serve on the board of GoDaddy.com, a major internet company, agrees that diversity and inclusiveness is good business: When boards are open to multiple perspectives, theyre largely going to end up with a better answer. Rafael believes that she was fortunate in the confluence of Sarbanes-Oxley and the time she was considering an initial board position. SOX was the impetus for some companies to move the old boys network out of the boardroom and bring in some fresh thinking. Because of her gender, and the fact that she had implemented SOX at a major tech company, she became a sought-after candidate for director positions.

    Our three panelists also concur that most boards today strive to gather information and references on potential members from a diverse pool. Nevertheless, Kirtley offers that many board members tend to be comfortable with the people they can relate to more people from similar backgrounds, management positions and experiences. And, she says, There are fewer people willing to take a chance, including many search firms, on someone who is new.

    Tips for board seekers Just as boards need to be thinking strategically, anyone considering board service should take a strategic approach, the panel agreed. Our three alumnae are not only approached regularly to serve on boards, but are frequently asked for candidate recommendations. Stymiest, who has begun to keep a folder on her computer for such occasions, talks about her process: Youve sat around a management table or a board table, you know the quality of someones [a candidates] interventions; you know that they are thoughtful, respectful and nice to be around. These traits go a huge way with me.

    Of course, there is also the Catch-22 that you may not be perceived as qualified to serve on a board unless you have actually served on one. Stymiest

    Karyn Twaronite Taking diversity and inclusiveness global at EYParticipating in the conversation was Karyn Twaronite, who was recently named EY Global Diversity & Inclusiveness (D&I) Officer. This role comes in addition to her position as EY Americas D&I Leader, which she has held since October 2011.

    About Twaronites new global role, Steve Howe, EY Americas Managing Partner, said: D&I is a key component of our Vision 2020 goals. This is why Karyn was tapped to expand on our success in the Americas to further the most inclusive work environment for all of our people globally. Howe noted that the worlds leading organizations, including EY, must continue to push the boundaries in developing the 21st century workforce.

    One of Twaronites key concerns is ensuring equitable career sponsorship. As an example, Twaronite comments: Women are generally over-mentored and under-sponsored compared to their male peers, and men who get promotions are more than likely to have sponsors advocating for them. To encourage more high-level executive sponsors, she says, womens capabilities, potential and achievements must be made visible in high-profile jobs throughout all organizations. Twaronite is a global co-sponsor of EYs recently launched Women. Fast forward campaign (see more on page 10).

    A sampling of diversity and inclusiveness at EY Inclusiveness Leadership Program a formal mentoring program that pairs

    high-potential EY partners or principals with Americas board members and an external coach is designed to ensure that available talent is fully capitalized on in leadership ranks.

    Career Mentors and Sponsors Program looks at the career trajectory of high-performing women and ethnic minorities to see that theyre getting the right experiences. A standing leadership team of client-service leaders helps ensure that participants are assigned to top clients, key sales opportunities and other leadership roles and that they have the best mentors.

    Unplugged an annual two-day conference attended by more than 400 Black and Latino EY staff and professionals from every service line, practice and region. Now in its fourth year, Unplugged offers a unique opportunity for staff to build relationships, connect with peers and establish long-lasting networks with EY executives. The program has been expanded to our Pan-Asian population via webcast.

    Leadership Matters a learning experience that develops inclusive leadership capabilities for EY executives, senior managers, managers and seniors. A significant component of the program is exploring the impact of unconscious bias and insider-outsider dynamics, so that our people are more effective in team and individual relationships across our organization.

    Career and Family Transitions Program a coaching program that supports working moms and dads who are welcoming a new baby through birth or adoption. By connecting participants with a professional coach, the program helps new moms and dads meet their personal and professional goals, while also meeting their clients and teams expectations, during one of the biggest transitions of their lives. Coaches are multicultural and multilingual and are based inside and outside of the US.

    continued on page 12

    Connect April 2015 11

  • Building better boards

    pushed herself forward early in her career by volunteering to serve on the board of a non-profit in her community. She recommends that route for others.

    Rafael advises aspiring board directors to develop a case demonstrating why their specific background and skill set will help the organization. And she urges them to make an investment to become educated on the role of boards and board membership. She recommends enrolling in a directors college, such as those offered at top business schools and associations.

    In some ways, securing a board seat is not unlike a job search. Building a strong professional network is extremely desirable. And sponsorship is enormously valuable in Rafaels words, someone who will say, Im

    going to stand up and Im going to go to bat for you because I know that you will deliver; youre going to show up.

    Our panelists advise that it is critical, particularly for those in the accounting profession, not to take a check the box approach when presenting credentials to a board or a sponsor. Kirtley cites the preconceptions about CPAs that their expertise is confined to finance. Boards, she says, want not only depth, but also breadth. They are seasoned individuals who have made their mark in strategy, operations, IT or other key corporate functions. These professionals need to establish an awareness of all they have done throughout their career, says Kirtley. All three women agreed that most accounting professionals have a wealth of experience to offer. For those with hopes of serving on a corporate board, sometimes its just a matter of telling their story a little better.

    A high-performing company needs a high-performing board, and a high-performing board doesnt just happen.

    Silicon Valley insiders were not surprised when Betsy Rafael was named the first woman to join the board of GoDaddy, Inc., the internet company and worlds largest registrar of domain names. Rafael is a luminary in the high-tech industry, a sector that is not known for placing women in leadership positions.

    As a young professional starting out, Rafael never seriously considered her gender as an obstacle. It was simply not on the horizon. My mom was an executive in an advertising agency. My grandmother was a real estate agent. She grew up thinking that womens professional success was the norm.

    Rafael has been intrigued by technology ever since she can remember. When she was recruited by EY right out of college, she chose the San Jose office over San Francisco because thats where clients like Atari and Apple were being served.

    When Apple offered her a position, Rafael made the move from EY. I liked what I was doing, but I wanted to be closer to the business ... I wanted to have more of a say in what the company was doing in the finance area. Thus began a career

    BetsyRafaelFormer EY senior

    Last EY office: San Jose

    Board service GoDaddy, Inc. (2014present)

    Echelon Corporation (2005present: Compensation Committee Chair; Audit Committee)

    Autodesk Inc. (2013present: Audit Committee)

    Previous positions Vice President Corporate Controller and

    Principal Accounting Officer, Apple Inc.

    Vice President Corporate Finance (200607); Vice President Corporate Controller and Principal Accounting Officer (200206), Cisco Systems, Inc.

    CAO, CFO and Executive Vice President of Finance, Aspect Communications Corp.

    CFO and Senior Vice President, Silicon Graphics, Inc.

    Awards/distinguished service Trustee, Santa Clara University

    continued from page 11

    12 alumni.ey.com

  • My practical experience in regard to getting on boards has all been based upon the people I know and my network; youve got to have people that know that you want to be on a board.

    spanning more than two decades in a variety of finance-related positions with high-profile tech companies. In addition to Apple, Rafael held senior-level finance positions at Sun Microsystems, Cisco Systems, Aspect Communications and several others.

    As she continued to thrive in the tech sector, she realized that gender was an issue if not for her, then for others. I recognized that I had a responsibility to help other women. This commitment has helped to shape her role as a board director.

    I do believe that once youre on a board, you can become that mentor/sponsor, but you cant do it on the outside looking in.

    Looking back, Rafael believes that her background in public accounting has been a real differentiator. It teaches people how to problem-solve shows you a way of thinking and learning that sets you apart from somebody else. She has concluded that her experience at EY was, from a work perspective, the best foundational experience of my life.

    Connect April 2015 13

  • Frank Mahoney, EYs Vice Chair of Assurance, believes theres never been a better time to serve in the audit profession.

    words: Anne Lampert photos: Jonathan Gayman

    When Frank Mahoney enters an audit room, hes in his element. Even as EY Americas Vice Chair Assurance, a role he assumed in July 2014, he remains hands-on as a Global Client Service Partner. What has kept me in the business for so long is working in the audit room with our audit teams, he says. Mahoney clearly thrives on working with young people and sharing the insights hes gained from his substantial experience in the field. It is a legacy that he feels privileged to pass on.

    Given his significant and continuing contribution to the audit practice, Mahoney was well-suited to become EYs new Americas Assurance Leader, a role he views as an honor and a responsibility. And its an increasingly substantial responsibility, given the evolving global regulatory and standard-setting environment.

    The importance of the audit profession has never been greater, in Mahoneys view. The passage of Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) in 2002 was a message heard around the world by all stakeholders about the significance of trust in the capital markets. That trust is only possible through the performance of quality audits: This is why the work we do at EY is so critical to the

    vitality of the markets, remarks Mahoney. With SOX and the formation of the Public

    Company Accountability Oversight Board (PCAOB), US audit firms now operate under greater scrutiny and regulation. These developments, according to Mahoney, have driven the profession to become even stronger. This trend is partly the result of engaging more constructively with audit committee chairs and members, as well as communicating more frequently with them as part of audit delivery. The PCAOB has played a tremendous role in driving the profession to improve our audit quality, he says, and today we are achieving a higher level of quality than ever before.

    Transforming the audit Before assuming his current role, Mahoney was the leader of EYs Audit Transformation program. He believes that audit transformation is about making EYs audit business more quality-conscious, agile, efficient and relevant, so teams can deliver against our primary aim to provide the highest-quality audits in the profession.

    Mahoney is very proud of the audit transformation effort: The whole premise is to transform our audits to better meet the needs of all stakeholders including audit committees, investors and the

    capital markets overall. He notes that EYs audit transformation requires a significant investment in EYs largest practice. By developing the most advanced tools and technologies, we will empower our people to better manage the workflow of the audit and utilize data analytics to gain a more robust view of information and the business, says Mahoney. The outcome: a more effective audit and a fuller picture of the clients financials.

    Innovation the markets demand A more robust audit tool set is just one aspect of the recent developments that spark Mahoneys enthusiasm. Hes also excited about EYs high-growth Assurance practices, which focus on particular market demands: Fraud Investigation & Dispute Services

    (FIDS) helping our clients analyze the impact of cyber breaches, conduct fraud risk assessments, evaluate anti-bribery and corruption programs and utilize forensic data analytics to manage risk and regulatory compliance

    Climate Change & Sustainability Services (CCaSS) assisting companies in taking concrete actions to identify competitive advantages, increase operational efficiency and mitigate risk in their overall

    A fair challenge

    14 alumni.ey.com

  • FrankMahoney

    The whole premise is to transform our audits to better meet the needs of all stakeholders including audit committees, investors and the capital markets overall.

    approach to meeting environmental, social and other non-financial reporting commitments (see more on page 25)

    Financial Accounting Advisory Services (FAAS) aiding finance leaders as they tackle strategic accounting and financial reporting challenges in particular, addressing major standard-setting developments such as revenue recognition and future leasing proposals

    Each of these businesses addresses an urgent market need, Mahoney explains. From complex accounting regulations to environmental and social issues to theft of intellectual property, many companies just dont have the resources to take on these challenges, he points out, and they may lack the skill sets to make sure they get it right. All three offerings are tightly integrated with auditing, the cornerstone

    of the Assurance practice. Taken together, Mahoney adds, They are well-aligned with EYs Vision 2020 of building a better working world.

    The evolution of the emerging markets is also an integral part of the growth and people story for Assurance, for EY as whole. The growing economies in the Americas present significant opportunities for the practice: Operating in a firm that is so globally

    EY Americas Vice Chair Assurance

    Connect April 2015 15

  • Frank Mahoney a fair challenge

    day since. I take deep pride in the fact that what we do as auditors is important, he comments, and that we must hold ourselves to the highest level of ethics and integrity.

    Mahoney views all EY alumni those who spent their entire careers at the firm as well as those who moved on to other opportunities as leaving a powerful legacy. He credits the continued advances in the profession to those alumni who were committed to doing the right thing for our people every day, to generating the culture that is so vital to our business and so well-respected, and to cultivating the great minds of the future.

    Mahoney sees his role today as a caretaker for the EY brand, to make it even better. Following the last financial crisis, the capital markets gained a greater appreciation of the unequivocal importance of high-quality audits. He also believes the heightened scrutiny of the audit is a fair challenge that creates immense opportunities, reflected in the growth and breadth of EYs Assurance practice.

    Mahoney is also keenly aware of his responsibility to maintain work-life balance, which means having the flexibility to spend time with his family: his wife, Mary, and four teenage children, Sarah, Frankie, Lindsey and Jack, who are all very active in sports and other activities. He values being able to attend their events and other activities and being there at the right time.

    Mahoney looks to the future by first looking back. From his perspective, the profession has withstood intense scrutiny and challenges in the past, and has always emerged stronger and better than before. He takes particular pride in how EY has responded to those challenges, while always continuing to improve. Mahoney credits EY alumni for their past contributions and seems to derive confidence from knowing that the alumni network will always provide, a powerful resource and sounding-board for how this Assurance practice evolves in the future.

    connected, we have the ability to share ideas and talent across regions, Mahoney says. We know from firsthand experience that diversity people from different cultures and perspectives working together makes for higher-performing teams, he says.

    As the practice diversifies both with respect to building out the three specialty practices and to encouraging diverse audit teams Mahoney continues to remain personally focused on attracting new talent to EY. He is active in campus recruiting efforts at his alma mater, Boston College, and engages often in his new role with academic leaders and accounting professors to help increase understanding of the innovations now occurring in the field.

    The alumni legacy Asked what message he would deliver to EY alumni, Mahoney doesnt hesitate he voices deep gratitude. I always look back with a smile when I recall those that have served as mentors to me from my very first days with the firm, he says. Mahoney joined EY after graduating from college in 1985, and the business principles he learned in those early days have stayed with him every

    I always look back with a smile when I recall those that have served as mentors to me from my very first days with the firm.

    Americas Assurance strengthening EYs base

    Talent Number of professionals* = 19,844

    with 1,552 partners Number of professionals

    hired in FY 14 = 4,888 More than 31 million hours

    produced in FY 14Market presence EY audits more companies in the US

    Fortune 500 and 1000 and Russell 3000 than any other public accounting firm

    EY audits half of the businesses on Fortunes 2015 Top 10 Most Admired Companies list

    Number of US public companies audited in 2014 = 1,071

    Innovation in specialty practices Financial Accounting Advisory Services (FAAS) - Accounting, reporting and governance - Transaction accounting - Treasury, financial instruments and commodities

    Fraud Investigations and Dispute Services (FIDS) - Cyber breaches/fraud risk assessments - Anti-bribery and corruption programs - Forensic data analytics

    Climate Change and Sustainability Services (CCaSS) - Environmental, social and non-financial reporting

    - Competitive advantage and operational efficiencies

    - Risk mitigation throughout the value chain

    Quality Historic investments in

    audit transformation: State-of-the-art auditing and research tools

    New analytics suite New private company audit experience

    Continuing education hours per audit professional FY 14** = 122 (20% increase vs. prior year)

    Commitment to profession-leading financial reporting updates and commentary via EY AccountingLink

    * As of 28 February 2015** US average per professional

    16 alumni.ey.com

  • Closestto the pin


    As we welcome Frank Mahoney to his new role as EY Americas Vice Chair Assurance (see preceding article), we also welcome Tom Hough, Franks predecessor, to the ranks of our alumni.

    Whether as EYs recently retired Americas Vice Chair Assurance or in his new role on the Executive Committee of the United States Golf Association (USGA), Tom Houghs competitive spirit, passion for people and pride in his work have helped him aim for the pin throughout his career.

    words: Jeff Anderson photos: Marcus Krause

    Connect April 2015 17

  • Closest to the pin Tom Hough

    A note from Jeff Anderson, EY Director, Alumni Relations Americas and US:During my interview with Tom Hough, I reflected on when we first met: Tom had just been appointed Vice Chair Human Resources, and I had recently joined EY from Andersen to become the Southeast Area Director Human Resources, so Tom was now my ultimate boss. When Tom called his first Americas HR leaders meeting, I remember the chatter among the attendees. Tom was so positive, so enthusiastic and so zealous about EY that some of us wondered if he was for real if he was truly authentic. To inspire us, Tom closed our meeting with the famous Queen anthem, We are the champions. It seemed rather unconventional at the time, but after working closely with Tom and seeing him in action for the past 18 years, I can say he truly was for real and one of the biggest champions of our people.

    Seeing the light (and the pin)Tom Hough recalls a cold winter evening in Pittsburgh when he saw the light that changed his outlook forever. It was 1993, and he was attending a Penguins hockey game with clients. At the time, he was an Area Managing Partner, his first significant leadership role at EY. Hough couldnt help but notice the fierce pride the fans took in their team and in players such as Mario Lemieux, the NHLs scoring ace of that decade. He recalls thinking, People are paying good money to buy a jersey with Lemieuxs name on the back, making Hough want to display his own immense pride in being part of EY.

    A short time later, Hough stood before his Pittsburgh colleagues and vowed that he would wear an EY lapel pin every day for the rest of his career as an outward demonstration of his allegiance. Not only did he do so, but, for the next 21 years, Hough earned a reputation for handing out thousands of EY pins to EY people and alumni and even clients all over the world. Today, as a proud EY alum, hes still wearing one.

    Back to his rootsIn addition to his ever-present EY lapel pin, these days Hough sports the pin of the USGA as well. As a member of the associations Executive Committee, he commits 40 to 60 days a year giving back to a game I love, which gave me so much opportunity. Hough grew up playing golf and was a member of the University of Alabamas varsity golf team. But soon after

    starting college, he discovered a fire for business that more than equaled his love for the game, and you have to go where your passion is, he remarks.

    In fact, Hough says he was selected for the USGA Executive Committee first and foremost as a result of the experiences he gained at EY working with our global organization, empowering people with technology, developing a consistent approach across many functional components this is what I learned at EY and what I hope to use as I serve the USGA. I love business and I love golf; it couldnt be a better fit, he adds.

    The truth hurts (and helps)Hough started his career at EY with the National Research Group in Cleveland. It was a one-year assignment and, upon its completion, he transferred to the Birmingham, Alabama, office. Hough recalls a performance review that changed his perspective while he was there. The senior manager on one of Houghs jobs rated him less than expected. I was devastated, says Hough but he now realizes how important that experience was to his career. That review helped me to really appreciate the power and potential of constructive feedback, he says. It helped me realize our partners and people want to help, but with that help comes great expectation that you will thrive and contribute. Interestingly, seven years later, the author of that critical review would be one of Houghs sponsors for his partnership nomination.

    Revving the talent engineBy the time Hough was named Vice Chair Human Resources in 1996, EY was undergoing a period of extraordinary change workforce composition, technology, globalization and more were simultaneously exploding. In the midst of this sea of change, Hough introduced a then-novel concept: professional coaches. We believed that wed benefit from independent, outside coaches who could help us maximize our individual strengths, work better as teams and truly turn on the engine of our human capital, he remarks. Soon, EY piloted its first formal professional coaching program. Hough believes EYs

    The way EY supports its people it expands our experiences and potential and creates a much fuller life.

    18 alumni.ey.com

  • use of coaches unlocked a whole body of knowledge that allowed the firm to learn more about itself and our people to become more thoughtful toward each other. Much of this effort culminated in the introduction of the firms ground-breaking People First strategy in the late 1990s. Today, nearly 20 years later, a broad spectrum of coaching programs is a regular part of EYs talent development program.

    Expanding the turfIn 2000, Hough was named Southeast Area Managing Partner, based in Atlanta. Over the next nine years, Hough recalls seeing the firm teaming at its best. This included: responding to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act; assimilating and embracing great talent from Arthur Andersen, which Hough feels helped strengthen EY for the future; relocating the Atlanta office to anchor an urban revitalization project; and having the privilege of working day to day with our people and clients. It was also during

    his tenure in Atlanta that Hough had the great pleasure of introducing his sons, Tommy and Houston, to his favorite pastime: golf. To this day, theyre my best playing partners, he says with a smile.

    In 2009, rounding out his career, Hough was named Americas Vice Chair Assurance, a position he held until his retirement in 2014. Calling it a privilege and honor to finish his career leading the firms foundational practice, Hough says the experience allowed him to see firsthand and more clearly than ever the brilliance of EYs people. Looking ahead, Hough is quick to praise his successor, Frank Mahoney. Franks the perfect choice to be our new Americas Vice Chair Assurance, he declares. Hes a great leader and communicator and a truly remarkable partner. During the transition process, Hough notes, Mahoney unexpectedly called and invited Hough and his family to join the entire Mahoney clan for a football game at Boston College, Mahoneys beloved alma

    mater. We started out tailgating, and to see the love Frank has for his family and friends and his school it was just a very special day. I knew then that we were passing the baton to a truly great EY leader, Hough says.

    Sweet home, AlabamaAmong the most special guests at Houghs retirement reception were the retired partners and their spouses from his Birmingham office days the people who helped me in the early stages of my career and who have done so much for EY. Thinking back on his career, Hough believes EY gave him and offers all its people an opportunity for a life you never thought you would have. Indeed, Houghs remarks to EYs newest class of partners at a recent global new partners meeting may sum up his lifetime love for EY: Knowing what I do now, I wish I could do it all over again, and if given the chance, I most definitely would. Hough struggles to find words that adequately express his appreciation: Its not about what Ive done, but what EY and the people whove helped me in my career have done I will be forever thankful.

    More about Tom Hough Member of the USGA Executive Committee; will chair

    the U.S. Senior Amateur Championship and will chair the Audit Committee and serve on the Championship, Compensation and Finance Committees this year

    Previously served as co-general chairman of the U.S. Amateur Championship and the PGA Championship

    Has been nominated to serve on the board of Publix Super Markets Inc.

    Retired partner and former EY Vice Chair Assurance Former member of the EY Americas Operating Executive

    (17 years) and member of the Global Assurance Services Executive Committee

    Former Western Pennsylvania, Western New York and West Virginia Area Managing Partner, Vice Chair of Human Resources for the Americas, and Southeast Area Managing Partner

    Member of the University of Alabama Presidents Cabinet and Board of Visitors for the business school; member of Wake Forest University business school Board of Visitors

    Past member of the Executive Committee of the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce and a former trustee of the Woodruff Arts Center in Atlanta

    Married to wife, Jan, for 37 years; two sons, Tommy (wife, Chelsea) and Houston (wife, Anna)

    Tom Hough, retired EY Americas Vice Chair Assurance and a member of the USGA Executive Committee, shakes hands with Bryson Dechambeau during the first round of match play of the 2014 U.S. Public Links at Sand Creek Station Golf Course in Newton, Kansas.

    Connect April 2015 19

  • Building a better working world

    A thirst for excellence

    Alumna Sarah Kauss left the high-powered world of international real estate to launch a unique company a global sensation thats helping to build a better working world.

    Building a better working world

    20 alumni.ey.com

  • A thirst for excellenceSarahKausswords: Anne Lampert photos: Jonathan Gayman

    Connect April 2015 21

  • Building a better working world Sarah Kauss

    Sarah Kauss is on a mission: to persuade everyone to say no to plastic water bottles. Her company, Swell, produces the worlds Best Reusable Insulated Water Bottle. The product sleek and attractive enough to appear in fashion photo shoots has been embraced by celebrities such as Oprah, Ellen DeGeneres, Tom Hanks and Jimmy Kimmel. After all, the companys motto is Thoughtfully Designed to Drink in Style. In the US, Swell products are sold at Neiman Marcus, Saks, The Container Store, J. Crew, Nordstrom, Athleta and some Starbucks locations as well as many specialty retailers. As of 1 January 2015, the company had sold more than one million units. In 2014, Kauss was named to Fortunes 40 under 40, and she was the first EY alum to have been selected as a member of the EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women program.

    Look great & do good In addition to helping stem the use of thousands of plastic bottles every year, Swell is part of a charitable community that gives back. By using Swell bottles, consumers are not only reducing the number of plastic bottles in landfills and oceans, but also supporting efforts to bring clean water to the worlds poorest communities. Swell has teamed up with the U.S. Fund for UNICEF to help provide clean drinking water to children around the world. Swells charity partners also include American Forests, a long-standing nonprofit that works to conserve forests and promote tree planting, and Drink Up, a private sector partnership that encourages water consumption, whose Honorary Chair is Michelle Obama.

    Kauss does not remember a time when she didnt carry a reusable non-plastic water bottle with her everywhere. While municipalities across the US were considering bans on plastic bottles, she had long been keenly aware of their environmental impact. Kauss shared a moment when she remembered traveling by boat on the Amazon and seeing plastic bottles floating by. It has just always been one of my pet peeves, she said.

    More about the EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women programThe EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women program is a competition and executive leadership program that identifies a select group of high-potential women entrepreneurs whose businesses show real potential to scale and then helps them do it. Now in over 25 countries around the world, the program is spurring real growth. Businesses involved in the North American program have average annual revenue growth of 20% and, as a group, have increased their total revenue by 63% since joining the program. For more information or to get involved, please visit www.ey.com/us/eww or contact [email protected]

    Making waves in the boardroomPrior to founding Swell, Kauss had already embarked on an impressive international career. She was leading international development for Alexandria, the largest real estate investment trust (REIT) focused on science and technology campuses in urban settings. At the age of 30, Kauss was holding her own in boardrooms from Paris to Dubai, making the case for funding to support the development of research laboratories. She was involved in nearly every aspect of every project, and it was in these moments that she valued her background in accounting.

    The language of businessThrough it all, I had my accounting to make me feel comfortable, Kauss said. It really is the language of business. If youre not afraid of the numbers, what

    else is there? Having my EY background was so valuable it really gave me a lot of confidence.

    If you happened to be at the University of Colorado at Boulder in the late 1990s, you may have spotted Kauss running the Career Fair as her summer job. Impressed with the recruiters from the accounting firms, she changed her major from marketing to accounting. She was particularly attracted to the people of EY. A memorable conversation with Jo Marie Dancik, Denvers Office Managing Partner at the time, left a powerful impression on her. After Kauss introduced herself, Dancik urged Kauss to take charge of her career: Ask for the clients that you want, for the things that you want and dont just do what

    comes to you. Kauss recalls the conversation vividly describing Dancik as outstanding. EY was the clear choice.

    A flat organization Kauss embraced audit work at EY with her characteristic brio, appreciating the variety of clients and the teamwork. On her very first day at a client site, she had the opportunity to make a difference. I was reviewing journal entries and found an item that looked questionable.

    Kauss recalls her amazement that the organization was so flat, that even on her first day at the audit, the partner said, Just go in there and talk to the CFO. We trust you

    22 alumni.ey.com

  • Global Executive Alumni Partner Michael DeStefano with Sarah Kauss, founder and CEO of Swell Bottle and EY alumna.

    enough to represent us as a company. As it turned out, the team had to make an adjusting journal entry. Kauss later transferred to Los Angeles, where she was exposed to high-energy, high-tech clients such as Geocities, which was later sold to Yahoo. David Bohnett, Geocities co-founder, advised Kauss to consider business school. And so she entered Harvard after the tech wave began breaking apart in 2001.

    The 9/11 attacks occurred during her first week at Harvard Business School, and Kausss perspective on her career goals changed drastically. She remembers feeling as though she wanted to find a career that seemed more mission-driven or soulful.

    After receiving her MBA, Kauss spent another year at Harvard working in the Leadership Initiative, a leadership and curriculum development program focused on research. With a longing to return to the business world, Kauss took a position at Tapestry Networks, a firm that establishes business networks to address specific common issues, such as how to set up effective international operations. She was presenting on this very topic at INSEAD, an international business school with campuses in Europe and the Middle East, when she was offered the position at Alexandria. She worked at Alexandria for six years, traveling around the world.

    Through it all, I had my accounting to make me feel comfortable It really is the language of business. If youre not afraid of the numbers, what else is there? I just feel like having my EY background was so valuable It really gave me a lot of confidence.

    Connect April 2015 23

  • Building a better working world Sarah Kauss

    Kauss moved back east to develop the Alexandria Center for Science and Technology, where she did everything from design and development to work with teams of architects to renegotiation of contracts with the union, as well as leasing and hiring brokers to come up with the marketing plan. Visitors to Manhattan can view the Centers striking high-rise in East River Science Park, next to the FDR Drive.

    When the international market picked up again, the idea of working with California-based Alexandria while living on the East Coast and working with clients in overseas time zones seemed daunting. Kauss decided to resign. Her next move: to see whether she could make a go of the beverage bottle business.

    Growing brand ambassadors The year was 2009. Back in Manhattan, Kauss was unemployed and committed to developing her idea. She worked with a design firm in New York to come up with the name and a manufacturer in China to develop the bottle itself. Once she had a

    finished prototype, 3,000 blue bottles piled up in her New York apartment. On her own, with no staff, Kauss did her own sales and PR. She sent out samples to stores and to the media, including Oprah Winfreys O, The Oprah Magazine. Following the sample delivery, O came back to Kauss asking for the bottles in seven colors. It was at that time that Kauss took a leap of faith and ordered thousands of units of the bottle in various colors. Soon the Swell bottle became a fixture on the O List of recommended products. And today, Swell bottles come in more than 90 colors and styles.

    Creating brand ambassadorsEarly on, Kauss made a savvy and deliberate decision to court mom-and-pop and small specialty stores before taking on retail giants like Nordstrom. She did not want to go to the big retailers without the ability to report the sell-through rate in small stores.

    Today, Swell bottles are sold in thousands of specialty stores in the US. They love us, and theyre the ones that call us regularly to say, Can you believe it I sold 80 bottles yesterday? Can you air-ship more? It is the small specialty shops that are out there telling the Swell story. Theyre our front-line ambassadors, Kauss says. And she credits her starting small strategy for having advocates who are really cheering for her brand.

    Recognizing the entrepreneurial spiritLast November, Kauss was selected as a member of the 2014 class of EY Entrepreneurial Winning Women, to join the elite program for women entrepreneurs leading some of the countrys most exciting high-growth companies. This special group provides Kauss entry to EYs customized leadership program designed to connect her with the advisors, resources and insights necessary to scale her business.

    Kauss is enthusiastic about the program and keen to spend more time with the other members of the network. Ive never been in such a group of committed, smart, amazing women where I can honestly say, this is what Im struggling with. What did you do about this? There is just not any judgment. Its a very safe place to say, I actually am completely making up what Im doing right now. Its also safe to say that Sarah Kauss is one of the great improvisers in business today.

    EY rocks. I dont think Id have the confidence to do what Im doing now without having grown up in an organization such as EY.

    24 alumni.ey.com

  • Reporting













    yCustomers expect it. Employees demand it. Shareholders rely on it. Whats your strategy?As consistent economic growth is slowly restored across the world, the next great challenge is already forming. Maximizing the opportunities presented by emerging and restored markets without further exceeding the worlds environmental carrying capacity will require an unprecedented level of innovation, cooperation and political will.

    EYs Climate Change and Sustainability Services (CCaSS) was formed to help companies demystify the highly complex world of sustainability and assist them in taking concrete actions to identify competitive advantages, increase operational efficiency and mitigate risk.

    We begin by helping our clients develop an effective sustainability strategy that looks at nine key elements framing the sustainability strategy discussion. Our core services include: Credible reporting helping clients

    assess and understand environmental and social metrics that are material to managing their operations

    Sustainable business solutions helping organizations make better business decisions by bringing environmental, social and governance (ESG) concepts out of the sole purview of the sustainability function into strategic risk, supply chain, marketing, product development, finance and internal audit

    Join the conversationAn effective sustainability strategy needs to consider all of the components that affect your business. Illustrated above are nine key elements that should frame the sustainability strategy discussion.

    continued on page 26

    Connect April 2015 25

  • Article heading

    Leisha John is one of the 10 most powerful women in sustainabilityLeisha John, EYs Americas Director of Environmental Sustainability, was selected by gb&d, a magazine covering green building and design, as one of its 10 most powerful women in sustainability.

    John said the honor is a reflection of EYs sustainability successes such as our strategy around LEED green buildings, the rollout of Print Plus, which reduces our paper usage, and harmonizing EYs sustainability reporting around the globe. EYs culture plays a big role in all those achievements, according to John.

    Were grounded in our values. We have a commitment to diversity and inclusion, and everyones opinion matters, said John. She cited the power of the EcoCare network of 800 volunteers in the United States, which has supported grassroots efforts for more than a decade, and green champions in various departments across the Americas who help drive initiatives.

    Corporate compliance and operational improvement assisting organizations in managing corporate compliance and operational improvement by helping them with environmental and sustainability regulations and voluntary initiatives. This pragmatic business approach focuses on improving client operations by providing cost-effective solutions to material risks

    Finally, we examine the sustainability risk areas strategic, operational, compliance, reporting and reputation that, as sustainability continues to encompass a broader agenda, have emerged as key sources of risk to modern companies.

    More about EYs CCaSS

    Eight sustainability questions to ask yourselfIf you cannot answer yes to all of these questions, your organizations sustainability strategy may need enhancing.

    Do we have an overall climate change and sustainability strategy?

    Does the strategy consider all the relevant opportunities to generate revenue and reduce costs?

    Have we taken advantage of all the business and tax incentives and stimulus funding currently available?

    Have we recently assessed the effectiveness of our social compliance program and human rights status within our supply chain?

    Have we assessed where natural resource shortages are likely to prove most critical in our supply chain?

    Is sustainability risk included in our internal audit plan and overall enterprise risk management program?

    Does our company assure our external sustainability reporting using a third-party auditor?

    Do I know all the regulations impacting my business? Do I know my compliance costs?

    Climate Change and Sustainability Services

    Lets talk sustainability Addressing risks, overcoming challenges and achieving results

    Leisha John

    You can learn more about EYs Climate Change and Sustainability Services on ey.com (under the Services tab) or by contacting Steve Starbuck, EY Americas Leader of Climate Change & Sustainability Services at [email protected] or +1 704 331 1980.

    Steve Starbuck EY Americas Leader of Climate Change & Sustainability Services

    EY contributes to technical sustainability working groups aimed at standardizing definitions and approaches, such as the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC), Global Reporting Initiative (GRI), Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).

    Over 700 dedicated EY professionals are fully focused on helping clients around the globe to develop, execute and measure broad sustainability strategies.

    In an independent survey of global corporate sustainability leaders conducted by Verdantix, EY was named the company with the strongest perceived capabilities to advise on global sustainability strategy.

    EY uses a multidisciplinary team approach to address all of the clients strategic sustainability needs. This team includes subject-matter resources from geologists and tax professionals to former government officials and auditors.

    continued from page 25

    26 alumni.ey.com

    Building a better working world

  • Issue # Month Year

    Visit the EY Alumni Network today!

    Visit alumni.ey.com

    Visit the new and improved EY Alumni Network to get the latest on alumni in the news, alumni developments and connection opportunities.If you havent visited recently, the EY Alumni Network has a fresh look, new tools to help advance your career and more features designed to help you stay connected with your former EY colleagues. These include: Online member directory now including global alumni search Job opportunities at EY, in the market and submitted by your

    fellow alum Career toolkit including proprietary templates, tracking tools

    and more Events calendar including alumni reunions and other

    engagement opportunities Learning calendar a listing of upcoming live and virtual learning

    and CPE opportunities

    Also, when you join the Network, youll receive the Alumni Network Connector, our quarterly electronic EY alumni newsletter, and youll be sure to receive relevant invitations to learning, CPE and reunion events.

    Already registered on the Network? You may need to reset your password.If you previously registered on the EY Alumni Network but have not reset your password since the launch of the new network, you will need to do so. Go to alumni.ey.com Click the Connect now button Select United States under Choose location At the bottom of the log-in page, under Alumni first-time

    users, select click here to reset your password and follow the on-screen instructions

    Not a member of the EY Alumni Network? More than 70,000 of your former EY colleagues in the US have already registered. What are you waiting for? Go to alumni.ey.com Click the Connect now button Select United States under Choose location At the bottom of the log-in page, under Alumni first-time

    users, select click here to create your account and follow the on-screen instructions

    Connect April 2015 27

  • Whenever you join, however long you stay, the EY experience lasts a lifetime. Thats EYs promise to our people. Under the leadership of Steve Howe, EY Americas Managing Partner, EY is making significant strides toward this goal. How do we know? Our people recruits, current partners, employees and alumni tell us. For example, in September, EY was again listed as the No. 1 professional services employer and No. 2 employer overall (just behind Google) in Universums annual Worlds Most Attractive Employer ranking. Ernst & Young LLP was named No. 3 in The 2014 DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity, and EY received a Glassdoor Employees Choice Award recognizing the Best Places to Work in 2015. And for the 17th consecutive year, Ernst & Young LLP appears on Fortunes 100 Best Companies to Work For list.

    In this issue of Connect, we talk with Steve Howe and Kelly Grier, EYs new Americas Vice Chair Talent, about alumni, talent and what it takes to nurture a winning people culture.

    KellyGrierrecently appointed EY Americas Vice Chair Talent

    It all comes down to

    People. They are critical to the success of any organization, but particularly to a professional services firm. At EY, they are the most valuable asset.


    words: Jeff Anderson photos: Jonathan Gayman

    28 alumni.ey.com

  • SteveHowe EY Americas Managing Partner

    You are widely recognized as having helped shape EYs people culture, including re-energizing EYs alumni relations effort. Why are alumni so important to you and what do you hope to accomplish?

    When I became EY Americas Managing Partner in 2006, I assessed a lot of things, including how we were engaging our alumni. Regionally and locally, we were doing some things very well, but our effort wasnt consistent. And when I looked at the numbers then some 200,000 alumni in the US and Canada alone I said, Its just too powerful, weve got to believe in this: alumni are an extension of the EY family and we need to help each other.

    What do you mean by help each other?Our alumni tell us that one of the

    greatest services we can provide is to help them stay connected to each other and to EY. So through dozens of alumni reunions

    Keeping people at the center of our strategyIn his 32 years with EY, Americas Managing Partner Steve Howe has seen the organization nearly triple in size. And as EY grows, so do the number and strength of EY alumni now estimated at 250,000 in the Americas. We talked with Steve about the power of this vast alumni network.

    and learning events, and communications like Connect magazine, our alumni LinkedIn group and the alumni network, we try to do that. How can our alumni help EY? Well, sometimes its helping us build a relationship or win new business. Sometimes its sharing their perspectives and ideas. And sometimes its just enjoying spending time together. EY is part of our alumnis brand and they are part of our family.

    A few years ago, USA Today named EY a top-five leadership factory due to the extraordinary number of alumni who are in C-suite positions in leading companies. How do you feel about that description?

    I think its great just fantastic. Our Vision 2020 defines our purpose as helping to build a better working world. And if you read the fine print, we explicitly state that, in addition to being relevant to capital markets and world economies, we

    will develop leaders. Many of those leaders will stay here and help EY reach its ambition. And many are going to leave and become leaders in the marketplace. And thats fine with me. Its part of our purpose and our unique people culture at EY.

    EY was recently named by Universum as the second most attractive place to work in the entire US, behind only Google. Does it surprise you that a professional services firm would earn that distinction?

    Yes. I think it surprises a lot of people, including my children. But its a great validation of who we are and who we want to be. It shows our people are excited about what they do and about our purpose as an organization. We cant just preach it; our people must truly believe and live it and this shows they do.

    When you become an alumnus, what do you want to be remembered for at EY?

    I hope people will say, He was always true to our values, and he kept people at the center of our strategy. If we get the people focus right, were going to serve our clients right, and were going to achieve our ambition.

    Connect April 2015 29

  • Cultivating future leaders

    Kelly Grier begins our interview with a heartfelt declaration: Ive never been more proud of EY. I love our firm. Our Vision 2020 purpose-driven ambition of building a better working world embodies in such an incredibly powerful and clear way what EY people past, present and future are all about.

    Since being appointed to her new role this past summer, Grier says she has gained a whole new appreciation for the dedication of so many people who work so hard together, often in the background, to make EY the world-class organization that it is today. Its this spirit of teaming, she believes, that most distinguishes EY and its culture who we are as a firm in the market.

    As one of worlds most attractive employers, EY has record numbers of people joining its ranks today. When you take that infusion of talent, perspective and experiences, says Grier, and couple it with our high-performing team culture, the result is a very unique environment one thats extremely potent, particularly around innovation. She believes the culture at EY helps people succeed the most when they work in pursuit of a teams objectives. The success of the individual and the team are not in conflict but are culturally complementary at EY, she adds.

    A global mindset based on experienceGrier has always had an interest in global business and is, therefore, a huge supporter of mobility for EY people. When EY won the Compaq audit engagement in 2000, she immediately raised her hand to serve the client in Switzerland. Her original three-year assignment grew to five after Hewlett Packard (HP) acquired Compaq and she stayed to work on the integration.

    More about Kelly Grier More than 23 years experience serving primarily Fortune 500 global companies and

    extensive international experience Member of the EY Americas Operating Executive and the US Partner and Principal

    Committee and member of the Global Practice Group and Global Talent Executive Member of the U.S. Dept. of Commerces National Advisory Council on Innovation

    and Entrepreneurship Former EY Chicago Office Managing Partner and Illinois Market Segment Leader Has served as an elected member of the firms Americas Advisory Council and the

    Global Advisory Council Has served as Coordinating Partner or Senior Advisory Partner on some of the

    firms largest clients, including many SEC registrants Previously served as an EY Regional Diversity and Inclusiveness Leader Selected in 2010 as a World Economic Forum Young Global Leader Recognized as a 2011 Woman of Achievement by the Anti-Defamation League Recognized as a 2007 Woman to Watch, Experienced Leader by the Illinois CPA Society Recipient of EYs Rosemarie Meschi Award for outstanding dedication to the development

    of EY professionals Trustee of the Ravinia Festival Board of Directors and Skills for Chicagos Future;

    appointed by Chicago Mayors Richard M. Daley and Rahm Emanuel as director of World Business Chicago

    Previously served as director of Childrens Home and Aid Society, the Chicago Finance Exchange and the Civic Consulting Alliance

    Kelly Grier says her extensive global experience, combined with her time spent as a gender equity taskforce member and Chicago Office Managing Partner, have helped prepare her for her new role as EY Americas Vice Chair Talent.

    In July 2014, former Chicago Office Managing Partner Kelly Grier was named Americas Vice Chair Talent, succeeding Nancy Altobello, who became Global Vice Chair Talent. Upon making the appointment, Steve Howe, Americas Managing Partner, recognized Grier as a strategic thinker with demonstrated client service experience; a record of inclusive leadership working with our partners and developing our teams; and an inspirational leader with a proven track record of working globally and leading through change.

    30 alumni.ey.com

    It all comes down to people Kelly Grier and Steve Howe

  • Reflecting on her time abroad, Grier views it as a remarkable and invaluable opportunity so early in her career. I think about who I am as a leader, and so much of it maps to that experience, she remarks. Being immersed in a global environment and in highly diverse teams, and seeing firsthand the ability not just to accept but to harness those differences witnessing that power and the power of teaming it was a transformational experience.

    One of Griers favorite memories from her time in Switzerland is her interaction with Compaqs regional CFO. I remember him telling me, This is not the United States of Europe. Every one of these countries is different. You cant just come in and expect everybody to conform to the US way. She quickly learned that it takes a delicate balance to create consistency while still being true to the local market and cultural distinctions. That was a surprising and important lesson Ive never forgotten, she adds.

    A leadership factoryThe notion of helping develop leaders piqued Griers interest a few years back when EY was recognized by USA Today as a top leadership factory. In fact, one of the first things she expressed to her Talent team is that their job is to help build leaders. What does EY do? We build leaders; thats what we do, says Grier, and our alumni are an extension of our leadership development, focus and prominence in the market.

    Grier continually thinks about how EY identifies and attracts people, especially experienced talent. Will new talent be accretive to our culture? Thats incredibly important to me, as is preserving the essential qualities of our culture which truly is our competitive advantage while allowing our culture to evolve as our people, the firm and the market evolve. She explains that through the onboarding and assimilation process, the focus is on infusing our culture with the goodness and innovation coming from new people with different perspectives. Recruits choose us every time because of our culture.

    Grier sees our alumni as stewards of the firms culture because they helped nurture and build todays EY. She notes that EY

    The Chicago White Sox ConnectionIn some ways, Kelly Grier owes her career at EY to the Chicago White Sox. While in college, Grier worked as Controller of the South Bend White Sox, which at the time was the White Soxs Single-A affiliate team in South Bend, Indiana. Knowing the Chicago White Sox were a client of EYs, she chose EY and joined the engagement team serving the White Sox. There, Grier got to know Tim Buzard and Bill Waters, who later joined the White Sox organization for the love of the game, as she puts it. Buzard now serves as the teams Senior Vice President of Administration while Waters is Senior Director of Finance. But their impact on Grier was indelible. Tim and Bi