CPAs in the Spotlight

CPAs in the Spotlight: September 2021

Each month, we highlight our FICPA members' latest and greatest career achievements. 

If you have good news you'd like to share about yourself, your firm or your employees and would like to be included in a future edition of CPAs in the Spotlight, please email communications@ficpa.org.

Here are the CPAs in the Spotlight from September:

HBK CPAs & Consultants

Alissa Dhawan

Alissa Dhawan, CPA, MBA, has been promoted to HBK CPAs & Consultants West Palm Beach office as a Principal. Alissa transferred from the (HBK) Cherry Hill, New Jersey, office to the (HBK) West Palm Beach office last summer as a very experienced Senior Manager.

“Alissa returned to Florida to run the Southeast Florida Assurance Practice and immediately played an integral role in our region’s continued rapid expansion in the marketplace,” noted West Palm Beach Principal–In-Charge Michael Kohner. “She is a talented professional and dedicated to advancing our firm’s reach and reputation.”

She has over 14 years of experience, most of which with a member firm of Ernst & Young Global Limited where she provided assurance and attestation services, including delivering forensic, merger & acquisition and other financial consulting services. 

Throughout her career, Alissa has specialized in performing both transactional due diligence and auditing private companies, not-for-profit entities and employee benefit plans including multi-employer plans.  Her diverse background has assisted companies in tightening internal controls, reducing costs, and her expertise has led to assisting numerous companies with implementation of several new accounting standards in accordance with US GAAP. She works with clients in a variety of industries and enjoys teaching internal continuing professional education courses. 

Raised in Florida, Alissa earned her Bachelor’s in Business Administration, with a Minor in Accounting, from McDaniel College (formerly Western Maryland College) in 2007. She went on to earn her Master of Business Administration, with a concentration in Business Analytics, from West Chester University of Pennsylvania. She is a licensed CPA in several states.

Additionally, Alissa is an active member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), Young Friends of the Kravis, Jewish Women Foundation of the Palm Beaches and of the Executive Women of the Palm Beaches. She is also on the Associate Board of the Ambassador for the American Cancer Society as well as a Trustee-level member of the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches. 

Anthony J. Giacalone

Anthony J. Giacalone, CPA, has been promoted to the HBK CPAs & Consultants West Palm Beach office as a Principal. He has over twelve years of experience in business and individual tax consulting and compliance, generational wealth transfers, business operations support functions, outsourcing accounting and finance, and transaction consulting.

Throughout his career, Anthony has worked closely with privately owned companies an owner-operators both as an internal resource and a consultant. His background has provided an opportunity to deliver value to a wide variety of clients across a multitude of services such as financial reporting, business consulting, international tax planning and reporting, global tax consulting, estate and gift tax planning, family office matters, mergers and acquisitions, and state/federal tax reporting to name a few. He has worked with businesses in many industries, including Manufacturing, Construction, Professional Services, Medical Specialties, Marine Industry, Retail/Wholesale, Dealerships, and Real Estate.

“Anthony was part of the team that helped launch the West Palm office for HBK three years ago.  He was able to utilize his knowledge of firm resources and HBK team member areas of expertise to quickly integrate the firm into the community and work to provide value to clients and stakeholders” stated Michael L. Kohner, Principal-in-charge.  

Adding to his list of expertise, Anthony has done extensive work in tax research and consulting. He has served business owners, potential acquirers, and private equity groups with various types of consultation, including exit planning, mergers and acquisitions, business valuation, and other transactions.

He earned his Bachelor of Science in Accounting, from Florida Gulf Coast University in 2010. He went on to earn his Master of Science degree in Accounting & Taxation from Florida Gulf Coast University.  Anthony serves as a Board Member for the Palm Beach Tax Institute, is currently the acting Treasurer of Resource Depot a local West Palm Beach not-for-profit, and also represents the firm as the Executive Trustee for the Palm Beach North Chamber of Commerce. He is also a recent graduate of Leadership Palm Beach County Engage.

He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants (FICPA). Additionally, Anthony will be teaching Federal Taxation at Palm Beach Atlantic University starting in Fall 2021.


Warren Averett

Ann Carver

Warren Averett CPAs and Advisors is proud to announce that Ann Carver, CPA, CFE, of the Pensacola office has been designated as a Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.

Carver, a Member in the Firm’s Audit Division, has more than 25 years of public accounting experience. Her primary responsibilities include external audit fieldwork of credit unions and banks, pension plans, internal audit work, financial institution compliance reviews and more.

Ann has an extensive background serving the credit union industry and she participates in the AICPA Credit Union Task Force. The task force meets periodically throughout the year to discuss accounting, auditing, business services and regulatory topics that specifically affect the industry. Ann lives in Downtown Pensacola with her husband.

The CFE credential denotes proven expertise in fraud prevention, detection and deterrence. CFEs are trained to identify the warning signs and red flags that indicate evidence of fraud. CFEs around the world help protect the global economy by uncovering fraud and implementing fraud-prevention processes.

“I am so happy to have earned this certification,” says Carver. “I studied long and hard to pass the exam. Now that I’m a CFE, I can better serve our clients, the Firm and the Pensacola accounting community with the knowledge that I have gained.”

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