2018 CPA Summit Innovation. Technology. Leadership.


All materials for this event will be offered electronically only. Registrants will receive instructions to access the materials prior to the conference.


The 2018 CPA Summit is a one-day event where CPA’s learn from the most important voices in the profession and find solutions to push careers forward. Topics include leadership, technology, cutting-edge trends, and emerging professional issues. This interactive event is the CPA event of the year!

The 2018 event is still being finalized – so check back soon for more details.  Please see the sessions we have entered below and we will be adding new sessions very soon!

If you choose to attend the simulcast, please note that only specific sessions will be offered in this format, they will be denoted by an asterisk (*) next to the session title, but will include all general sessions.

Course Level
Professional Area of Focus
Accounting & Auditing
Business & Industry
CPE Field of Study
Business Management & Organization
Computer Software & Applications
Management Services
Specialized Knowledge
Who Should Attend
All accounting and finance professionals that want to take their company, firm, or career to the next level.

Sheraton Baltimore North, 903 Dulaney Valley Rd, Towson, MD 21204

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Dec 6, 2018
8:00 am - 4:00 pm
Sheraton Baltimore North, 903 Dulaney Valley Rd, Towson, MD 21204
Total CPE Credits
In-Person + Simulcast


DAY 1 of 1 December 6, 2018
7:00 am - 8:00 am
Registration and Continental Breakfast
8:00 am - 8:50 am
Remaining Relevant: AI in Accounting and Auditing

Speakers: Tom Hood, CEO MACPA/BLI, Leon Katsnelson, CTO, IBM, John Colthart CEO, Mindbridge AI

AI is the #1 Tech Hard Trend facing CPAs, accounting and finance professionals today. This panel of experts will discuss how CPAs can harness this powerful technology to be even more relevant in today’s exponential.y changing world. You will learn how AI is being used to augment the audit and financial reporting processes of companies and firms or all sizes.

8:50 am - 9:00 am
Networking Break
9:00 am - 9:50 am
Blockchain and the Global Accounting Profession



Financial Storytelling: The Key in Growing Your Organization to the Next Level

Speaker, Peter Margaritis, Business Learning Institute

Are you responsible for presenting financial information to your organization? If you’re a CEO, CFO, financial analyst or a manager needing to communicate financial information in an impactful way, this workshop will give you the necessary tools to tell more effective stories with your financial data.

Bring financial information to life and use it to communicate a story to an audience, with a focus on simplicity and ease of interpretation. This is accomplished through a mix of financial data, visualization, storytelling theory, best practices, and practical application.

Why Being a Trusted Advisor Just isn't Enough

Speaker: Dr. Chandra Bhansali, Accountants World

While there’s certainly a great deal of value in being a trusted advisor, but in an increasingly competitive landscape, being an advisor may be just the start. The new end goal is to be relevant to you clients’ needs. Why is that distinction important? Because relevance defines your ability and commitment to do what’s good for your clients. That requires you to ask yourself, what can we do within our firm so we can do what’s good for our clients?  In this presentation we’ll discuss six ways to make your firm more relevant to the needs of small business clients to lead both your clients and your firm towards a brighter future.

9:50 am - 10:00 am
Networking Break
10:00 am - 10:50 am
Utilizing AI and Blockchain to Create a more Human Hiring Experience

Speaker: Kate Ferreira, OpHaus

We will cover how technology can help reduce friction and get people to that first, effective conversation more quickly.

Successful Planning for Cloud Adoption

Speaker: Eileen Adao, Xero

Adopting the cloud is a big step for any firm because it’s more than just a new tool, it’s a whole new way of running a business. It requires updating processes and educating staff. Set you and your team up for success by developing a change management plan for your firm to phase in use of the cloud.

Preaccounting: Why Ignoring Expense Management is a Costly Mistake

Speaker: Matt Donaldson, Expensify

When a client’s preaccounting tasks are not done, the accountant (you!) is held responsible. Core tasks such as receipt and mileage tracking and expense submission make up the bulk of time-consuming tasks but are the clients’ responsibility. From this session, gain control by making the end of month close more efficient through smart automation.
Learn how to identify and diagnose preaccounting inefficiencies
Optimize your clients’ preaccounting workflows and processes, which in turn optimizes your accounting tasks
Discover how firms saw an average net ROI increase of 598% by automating expense management features and how to apply those processes to your firm.

10:50 am - 11:00 am
Networking Break
11:00 am - 11:50 am
Asking Effective Questions

Speaker: Ed Kless, Sage

This session is dedicated to the possibility that professionals can greatly increase the value they provide to their customers if they hone their skills at asking better, more effective questions. Developing and enhancing this skill is not easy because it requires us to rethink the paradigms and prejudices of the past. If you would like to contribute to a conversation about this topic, please join Ed Kless, Sage senior director of partner development and strategy.

Key Performance Indicators of a CAS Practice

Speaker: Samantha Mansfield, CPA.COM

Across the profession there is a concentration on evolving services to revolve around the value of your advice, as technology continues to automate transactional work. Client accounting advisory services (CAS) has lead this charge over the last 10 years, and like any innovations it hasn’t fit into all the traditional models it is displacing. This is why CPA.com and AICPA PCPS designed a survey to begin a baseline measurement of appropriate KPI’s for running an advisory based accounting practice. Join this session to hear of results, hot off the presses, that indicate success, and baseline demographics of CAS practices across the country.

Technology Update: Today's Newest Apps, Tools & Resources

Speaker: David Bergstein, CPA – Intuit

This session will introduce the attendees to the most popular ecosystem apps and tools to help them improve their client accounting services & tax practices. It’s all about automation, workflow cloud and being digital. Attendees will walk away with useful knowledge in how to build a technology stack that fits their needs as well as a list of resource websites that will help them maintain an edge on technology. It’s time to have fun in your practice and let automation work for you.

11:50 am - 12:20 pm
Lunch Address: Rethinking What’s Possible: Technology and Our Evolving Profession, Kimberly Ellison-Taylor, Immediate Past AICPA Chairman

Speaker: Kimberly Ellison-Taylor –  Oracle, Immediate Past AICPA Chairman

Fueled by rapid technological innovation, the world is changing at unprecedented speed – with significant implications for the accounting profession. Cybersecurity, blockchain, artificial intelligence and cognitive technologies all have the potential to transform our work. Association of International Certified Professional Accountants Immediate Past Chairman Kimberly Ellison-Taylor, CPA, CGMA, provides insight on the forces shaping the future of accounting and the many opportunities for the profession to go beyond the expected by embracing technology and pushing the boundaries of what’s possible.


12:20 pm - 1:00 pm
1:00 am - 1:50 pm
A Primer for Servicing the Marijuana Industry

Speaker: Stan Sterna, JD – VP AON

Despite the fact that the marijuana remains an illegal controlled substance under federal law, over half of the states allow its cultivation and sale for medicinal use while an ever increasing number are permitting sale for recreational purposes. While this activity has created new business opportunities for many CPA firms, it also presents unique challenges and risks in light of the dichotomy between federal and state law. This session will address those challenges, the current state of the legal/regulatory environment and how CPAs contemplating servicing the marijuana industry can navigate those risks.

How the Finance Leader of Tomorrow is Using Data Today

Speaker: Mike Sabbatis, CEO XCM

“Effective leadership is about taking in all of the information, synthesizing it and then making a decision and standing behind that decision,” said Pete Shier, CFO of Deloitte.

As digitalization, artificial intelligence, and machine learning continue to automate work, forward-looking businesses are increasingly looking for new ways to leverage technology to help differentiate and scale up their businesses. The finance leaders of tomorrow are no longer focused on harvesting data—they have algorithms for that—instead they are exploring new ways to analyze and interpret this data to drive the business forward.

  • Learn how to use dashboards to deliver KPI’s and insights to the business
  • Identify trends and opportunities to increase productivity and performance in your business
  • Learn how to monitor and continuously improve operations and business processes to accelerate your decision-making

Speaker: Liscio

1:50 pm - 2:00 pm
Networking Break
2:00 pm - 2:50 pm
Managing the Ever-Changing Risks of Cloud as Your Maturity Evolves

Speaker: Adam Salerno – Sr. Director, Coalfire

We will define cloud maturity adoption types and overview how to both address challenges and manage risk based on scenarios at each of those levels. Also, as the external risks are not standing still, how should you expect your organization to react.

CPA Practice Advisor, Accounting Today, and Radical Compliance Press Panel

Speakers: Bill Sheridan, Dan Hood, Matt Kelly, and Michael Platt


Big Data and Power BI

Speaker: Guido Geerts, BLI

2:50 pm - 3:00 pm
Networking Break
3:00 pm - 3:50 pm
Rachel Druckenmiller Endnote

Speaker: Rachel Druckenmiller, SIG

3:50 pm - 4:00 pm
Closing Remarks


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2018 CPA Summit

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