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The world is changing…and so is the accounting profession. The #FutureReady Summit is all about positioning you to be the financial professional of tomorrow.

The CPA #FutureReady Summit is a one-day event where CPAs 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!

New for the 2019 Summit: Attend our pre-conference, Complimentary TED-style #FutureReady Learning Labs on 12/2 – Click here for more information » We also recommend signing up for the AI Innovation Summit on 12/4. Please note these programs can be purchased as a bundle for a discount here – #FutureReady Bundle.

*Please Note that the following sessions will be simulcast as indicated by **

2019 Featured Speakers Include:

Tom Hood
Enrico Palmerino, Botkeeper
Jody Padar, New Vision Group
Ed Kless, SAGE
Jennifer Elder, BLI
Samantha Bowling, MACPA Innovative Practitioner of the Year
Mary Scully, Howard Bank
Rachel Druckenmiller, BLI
Stan Sterna, AON
Jordan Birnbaum, ADP

Business Learning Institute
Course Level
Professional Area of Focus
Future Ready
T Shaped Professional Anticipating and Serving Evolving Needs
CPE Field of Study
Business Management & Organization
Computer Software & Applications
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 US
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Dec 3, 2019
8:00 am - 4:00 pm EDT
Sheraton Baltimore North
903 Dulaney Valley Rd
Towson, MD 21204 US
Total CPE Credits
In-Person + Simulcast


DAY 1 of 1 December 3, 2019
7:00 am - 8:00 am
Registration & Continental Breakfast
8:00 am - 8:50 am
01 - FutureReady CPA Panel**

Speakers: Jody Padar – Managing Partner, New Vision CPA Group, Samantha Bowling – Garbelman Winslow CPAs, Lexy Kessler, Partner – Government Contract Services Group, Aronson LLC, and Lyle Benson – LK Benson & Company

In this new age of technological innovation at an unprecedented level being #FutureReady is more important than ever.  This panel will discuss the latest trends and how they are leading the way to making their firms and organizations #FutureReady.

8:50 am - 9:00 am
Networking Break
9:00 am - 9:50 am
02 - How I Built A Profitable Client Accounting Services Practice

Speakers: Div Bhansali – VP, Marketing, Accountants World and Jim Sosinski – The Koenig Group

Client Accounting Services (CAS) is the #1 new revenue segment for CPA firms. A majority of firms are now either offering or planning to offer CAS to their clients. Jim Sosinski, CPA, has successfully created and grown his CAS practice. In this session, Jim will share his secrets to profitable CAS: the specific processes he implemented, the technologies his firm uses, how he convinces clients about the greater value he can deliver to them via CAS, how his tax season stress reduced dramatically due to CAS, and more. Jim will demonstrate how, by offering CAS efficiently, firms of all sizes can grow revenue and profit, without adding many resources and clients.


03 - Multiple Dimensions of Data: Analytics that Improve Tax, Assurance & CAS Practice Areas

Speaker: Mike Sabbatis – CEO, XCM Solutions

Everyone’s looking at analytics, but how many firms are looking at multiple dimensions of data?
As digitalization, artificial intelligence, and machine learning continue to automate work, best-in-class firms are increasingly looking for new ways to leverage technology to help differentiate and scale up their businesses. The firm of tomorrow is 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.
Attend this session to hear XCM CEO Mike Sabbatis discuss how firms are:
• Aligning to the data landscape today
• Using technology to centralize and gain insight from business data to increase productivity, support workforce engagement, and grow revenues
• Taking a data-driven look at Tax, Assurance, and CAS practice areas
• Identifying KPI’s to increase capacity and productivity

04 - Healing Leadership**

Speaker: Ed Kless – Senior Director, Sage Accountants Solutions

This session is dedicated to the possibility that the majority of leadership thinking is wrong as it is ultimate based on manipulation – trying to “get someone to do something.” Coming to terms with this idea is difficult and not for everyone because it requires us to examine some of our most deeply held beliefs and either dismiss them or at least think differently about them. If you are interested in having a conversation about healing leadership, you are invited to attend this session facilitated by Ed Kless, Sage senior director of partner development and strategy. This material is based on the work of Howard Hansen and Steve Geske.

9:50 am - 10:00 am
Networking Break
10:00 am - 10:50 am
05 - AI’s impact on Cybersecurity: Friend or Foe**

Speaker: Tom Blandford – CEO, E-Trepid

06 - Cyber-liability and the Credit Card Industry

Speaker: Dustin Hall – CPA Charge

07 - AI in Auditing and Advisory in Practice - It Doesn’t Need to Be Taboo

Speaker: John Colthart – SVP Sales, MindBridge AI

AI is already deployed and changing a number of firms outlooks on their future and how they approach all their work. AI applied against all the financial data in a firm or client that drives deeper insights, understanding of risks and ways that you can support your firm/clients success. Join this session to learn more about AI in a practical sense for assembling a risk and insight view and turn it into making AI a common utility for your business.

10:50 am - 11:00 am
Networking Break
11:00 am - 11:50 am
08 - Don't Be Automated: Skills for Staying Relevant**

Speaker: Jennifer Elder – Business Learning Institute

Bots, AI, and machine learning – OH MY!  Will accountants go the way of buggy-whip manufacturers?  There will always be a need for smart CPAs who can adapt.   No need to panic as long as you develop the skills that computers don’t have.  Come learn the Top Ten Skills you need to stay relevant, valuable, and future-ready.

09 - Are You Running Your Business, Or Is Your Business Running You?

Speaker: Bill Sheridan – CCO, Business Learning Institute

If you are the owner, leader, or manager of an organization who wants to see your business consistently run better and grow faster, Bill Sheridan and EOS can help you and your team simplify, clarify, and achieve your vision. A recognized speaker, Bill’s interactive style and real-world insight makes this a must-see event for growth-oriented entrepreneurs everywhere. Attendees will walk away focused, clear on priorities and issues, healthier as a leadership team, and using tools that help them gain more traction. Don’t let the company run you – get a grip on your business.

10 - Embrace Industry Shifts with Technology

Speaker: David Emmerman – Head of National Accounts, Xero

We know that technology has an impact on everything going on around us. How does it impact your firm and the way it can go about doing it’s work. What can you truly unlock for your clients, your co-workers, and your firm by embracing the shifts of technology. We are going to explore how adopting technology within your firm will allow you to unlock additional value added services and embrace the core why you started in this business in the first place.

11:50 pm - 12:20 pm
11 Lunch Address - CPAs as Strategic Partners in Navigating Change**

Speaker: Mary Ann Scully – CEO, Howard Bank

This session will address the need and opportunity for CPAs to lend both their financial skills as well as the related but often under appreciated strategic insights those skills produce in ensuring that their colleagues and clients remain practically relevant in a time of unprecedented change in so many industries. Too often strategic  skills are thought of as soft skills (visioning, innovation, marketing, and talent management) but if they are not complemented by hard skills grounded in data and an understanding of the need for resource allocation and its consequences as well as the need for metrics, strategies are dead on arrival . CPAs are uniquely positioned to provide that bridge.

12:10 pm - 1:00 pm
1:00 pm - 1:50 pm
12 Navigating Uncharted Waters: The Cyber Regulatory Environment

Speaker: Stan Sterna – VP, AON

As aggregators of data, CPAs are prime targets for data thieves. But trying to make sense of the morass of ever evolving data security regulations and laws can be quite challenging. In this session, you will learn about the current regulatory environment and how you can steer your firm into safe waters.
13 The Data Door - Getting Your Organization Ready for the Pivot to Data**

Speaker: Jordan Birnbaum – VP and Chief Behavioral Economist, ADP

As the accounting profession continues its transformation in the face of technological evolution, Data & Analytics emerges as a viable new area of subject matter expertise. How your firm learns to leverage big data and benchmarking tools can be the driving force you need to expand advisory services. But saying it is one thing – doing it is quite another. This session delivered by ADP’s Chief Behavioral Economist, Jordan Birnbaum, will consider how to leverage behavioral economics and I/O Psychology to infuse organizations with skill acquisition, new tools and new practices, enabling the accounting profession to transition to a new era of value creation for clients.

14 - Data Analytics with Microsoft Excel and Power BI

Speakers: Skip Falatko, Laura Swann, and Donald Tomoff – Maryland Association of CPAs and the Business Learning Institute

BI and business analytics are in high demand. Companies are adopting data analytics initiatives to enable better and faster decision making. Excel and Power BI are an advanced, yet easy, way to get started with self service business analytics / business intelligence.

1:50 pm - 2:00 pm
Networking Break
2:00 pm - 2:50 pm
15 AI and It's Regulatory Impact on Accounting

Speaker: Enrico Palmerino – Botkeeper CEO/Founder

AI is a huge buzzword in today’s tech circles but most people don’t truly understand how AI works, nor how AI is trained, developed and improved.  Many times even the companies that proclaim to utilize it in their products and services, have different definitions of what AI is.  The term itself has even recently become synonymous with generalized automation.  And to make it even more difficult, AI itself is changing all the time with new advancements, models, uses, and applications.

So how are you supposed to make decisions on whether to incorporate AI into your business? Well, this session is a great starting point. In it you will learn about:
• The current state of AI – or as we like to call it, Augmented Intelligence
• The different accounting softwares, systems and apps that use AI
• What kinds of regulatory issues are directly affected by AI
• The actions your firm needs to take to remain compliant when deploying AI

16 - Riding the Wave of Digital Disruption**

Speaker: Kacee Johnson – CPA.COM

Innovation, disruption, AI and blockchain. Newsfeeds are abound about how emerging technologies will automate the accountant’s role, and its potential impact on the profession as a whole. How much is hype? and when will these advancements really impact my firm and clients? After we sort through the noise, creating an innovation strategy and aligning it with our business model is the next hurdle to overcome in order to remain competitive. In this session we will explore how exponential change is advancing technologies faster than ever, and the most common challenges that firms face in staying current.

17 Standardizing Your Tech Stack

Speaker: David Bergstein – Customer Training Leader, Intuit

This session will introduce the importance of an efficiently designed, standardized stack of technology applications (tech stack) to implement in multi-service tax and accounting firms. This session will enable attendees to create a cloud based tech stack to streamline firm services, processes and operations. This session will also enable attendees to create a cloud based tech stack to deliver CAS (Client Accounting Services) and real time accounting. This session will introduce the anchor platforms for CAS, Tax and Practice Management and review how most transactional tasks can be automated. The course will also introduce additional integrated cloud applications that automate and streamline CAS tasks for the firm and the client. The course will provide attendees with a framework to customize technology stacks to automate and simplify workflows. Attendees will also receive resources to help transform traditional compliance oriented firms into proactive advisory oriented firms.

2:50 pm - 3:00 pm
Networking Break
3:00 pm - 3:50 pm
18 The Secret to Employee Retention**

Speaker: Rachel Druckenmiller – Founder and CEO, UNMUTED, Sponsored by SIG

Unemployment is at its lowest level in nearly 50 years. Most firms are trying to figure out what they can do to recruit, engage and retain talent. In the midst of perks, policies and procedures, many firms are missing the secret ingredient to retention. We overlook it because it seems too obvious. But it could be the key reason why your people stay or why they leave.


From increased job satisfaction, performance, morale and happiness to reduced stress and improved immunity, the impact of gratitude on workplace culture and wellbeing is far-reaching. Since we spend at least 1/3 of our waking hours at or on work, focusing on gratitude and giving back is one of the best things we can do to transform our workplaces. In this interactive session, we’ll explore specific strategies to shift our culture to boost morale and retain talent.

Learning Objectives
• Identify practical ways to foster a culture of appreciation at your workplace
• Differentiate between the power of bucket fillers and bucket dippers
• Explore a simple formula for fostering trust and connection in relationships
• Learn from other organizations that prioritize giving back and putting their people first

4:00 pm - 6:00 pm
Happy Hour Reception sponsored by Thomson Reuters

Enjoy the close of the Summit with a networking happy hour. Complimentary selection of hors d’ oeuvres and open bar.


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