The Metropolitan Washington, DC chapter, founded in August 1972, was the first chapter of the National Association of Black Accountants, Inc. (NABA) established outside of New York. Marion Holmes, who led the founding group, was elected the first chapter president.
Programs in the first year included the co-sponsoring of the Education Symposium for Accounting Instructors for Predominantly Black Colleges in Conjunction with the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants. The chapter members also participated in a career day activity sponsored by the National Negro Women’s Business and Professional Club.
Throughout the 1970’s, the Metropolitan Washington DC chapter (the chapter) developed a program agenda and laid the platform for a number of key programs, which remain an integral part of the organizations activities.
The chapter first participated in volunteer income tax assistance programs in 1973. In 1974, the chapter hosted the National Convention; this was the first time the convention was held outside New York. In the same year, a student chapter of NABA was established at Howard University. Later, in 1976, the chapter assisted in rewriting the DC accountancy law liberalizing the certification requirements.
The chapter’s first annual awards dinner was held in 1978. The Honorable Sterling Tucker, Chairman DC City Council was the Keynote Speaker. Since then, the annual awards dinner (Evening with NABA) has become the premiere event for the local chapter. Various prominent business and political leaders have joined the chapter throughout the years to celebrate this annual event.
The Chapter ushered in the 1980’s, by welcoming NABA’s national headquarters and the new Executive Director, Ben Newhouse, to Washington, DC in 1980. Over the years, the chapter continued to host programs focused on economic, financial and accounting matters as well as to award scholarships at the Annual Evening with NABA.
In 1985 the Corporate Membership program was implemented. In 1987, the chapter newsletter was renamed “The Cramer Account,” in honor of our beloved friend, Dr. Joe J. Cramer. In the same year, Denise Streeter led the initiative to identify the first 100 black certified public accountants in the United States. 1988 was a stellar year, as the chapter hosted NABA’s largest and most successful convention in its 19-year history. The convention exceeded all expectations, particularly in attendance and revenue. In a program titled “Salute to NABA Past, Present, and Future”, the chapter honored its 12 past presidents.
In alignment with the mission of NABA, the chapter assisted with hosting the 1983 Eastern Region Student Conference and began hosting annual career development workshops for students focusing on resume writing, interviewing, and dressing for success.
In 1990, the Bert W. Smith, Jr. Scholarship Fund was established to award a $1,500 scholarship annually. This scholarship, along with other Corporate sponsored scholarships, was awarded each year at the Annual Evening with NABA. A record $40,000 was awarded in 1998. As a demonstration of NABA’s continuing commitment to develop future accounting leaders, in 1993 a student chapter was established at the University of the District of Columbia. Student chapters were later established at Bowie State University and the University of Maryland College Park. In 1994, the chapter hosted the Eastern Region Student Conference.
The chapter introduced several new events including a Bike-a-thon (1990), Halloween Masquerade Party (1990), Scholarship Golf Tournament (1993), and a Mentoring Program (1997). Professional membership continued to increase, making DC the first chapter to exceed 200 members.
In 2000, the chapter hosted the National Convention again which included the inaugural Accounting Career Awareness Program (ACAP). Throughout the years, the chapter focused on continuing to provide a diverse programming agenda to meet the needs of the membership. New programs were introduced and partnerships developed with various organizations including the Metropolitan Community Development Corporation, the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting, and the DC Chapter of the National Black MBA Association.
In 2003, the chapter honored Mr. Frank K. Ross, one of the founding members of NABA with its Lifetime Achievement Award. During that year, the Outstanding NABA Member Award was renamed in his honor in appreciation for his tremendous support of NABA. In the subsequent year, the chapter celebrated the 25thAnnual Evening with NABA, which included a special tribute from Ms. Carolyn Smith, who was the inspiration behind Evening with NABA.
In 2005, the chapter introduced the AICPA 360 degrees of Financial Literacy program, which was part of the national financial literacy campaign for the organization. During 2007, members became involved in Operation Hope to support local financial literacy efforts.
The chapter continued to promote careers in accounting and finance by speaking to students around the area, including presentations at Garnet-Patterson Middle School and Lemon Road Elementary School. Other chapter initiatives included engaging members as volunteers for chapter programs, focusing on development of student chapters, and enhancing the chapter program agenda through partnerships and new programs. In 2006, the chapter experienced record growth with a membership count exceeding 300 for the first time. Since 2006, the chapter continued to experience record levels of professional and student membership. The chapter activities have been attended at record levels and the diversity of programs offered has continued to grow. The chapter has also seen growth amongst students and continues to send over 100 students to the Eastern Region Student Conference.
In 2009, the chapter celebrated the 30th Annual Evening with NABA. The event recognized the chapter’s history by bringing together many of the past chapter presidents and recognizing each presidents accomplishments during their tenure.
In 2010, the chapter expanded its outreach to the community with several chapter members participating in the Capital Area Asset Builders program entitled DC EITC Campaign which educates low income taxpayers and also provides free tax preparation.
Since 2011, the chapter has continued to increase its membership and corporate partners strategically to provide the best value possible. With the change in economy and business, the NABA Metro DC will continue to evolve and offer initiatives that will increase the business acumen of current and future leaders.
In 2014, the NABA Metro DC Chapter hosted the 43rd Annual NABA National Convention & Expo in Washington, DC. The convention was the largest attended convention in the past five years with over 1.850 registered professionals, students and corporate partners.
Marion Holmes, CPA
Leon Scott, CPA
Brenda Watkins, CPA
Sheila D. Shears, CPA
Carolyn L. Smith, CPA
Larry D. Bailey, CPA
Frank S. Taylor, CPA
Ralph A. Thomas
Hubert M. Reid, CPA
G. Gregory Russell, CPA
Lloyd G. Anderson, CPA
Charles E. Davis
Angela L. Avant, CPA
Deborah A. Cowan, CPA
Loxley O’Connor, CPA
Rene B. LaVigne, CPA
Gilbert A. Smith, CPA
Norman K. Jenkins, CPA
Chip Jordan, CPA
Adrian Vieira, CPA
Deidra Barksdale, CPA
Shelley Lee Hing, CPA
Michelle L. Royster, CPA
Monica Y. Brame, MBA
Tanya Davis, MSA
B’nai Sawyer, CPA
Jamal D. Burise, CICA
Rudolph Graham, MBA