Workforce Needs More Diverse CPAs
Andrea G. Cope, the newly installed chair of the 35,000-member California Society of CPAs (CalCPA), has emphasized the need to attract more minorities to the CPA profession during her term. She assumes the position as CalCPA celebrates its 100th anniversary.
As the leader of the nation's largest state accounting association, Cope noted that while 37% of Californians identify themselves as Hispanic, only 4% of the CPA profession within the state is Hispanic. She also mentioned that only 2% of California CPAs are African Americans, compared with 6% of African Americans in the state's population.
"I believe it is critical that we continue to support CPA career outreach," Cope said. "We want to attract the best and brightest to the profession. While we have made great strides in attracting women -- 60% of new licensees in California are women -- it is particularly important to reach out to students who are ethnic minorities, so that our profession mirrors the public we serve."
Cope, a CPA for more than 25 years, is a partner in the San Francisco firm of Burr, Pilger & Mayer. She provides accounting, tax and financial management services to businesses and their owners. During her CalCPA term, Cope wants to extend the organization's outreach efforts to the broadest possible audience of high school and college students. She encouraged her fellow members to volunteer to visit school campuses to discuss the advantages of an accounting career.