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  • Judy Cothern
    Kathleen Lorraine Casper5100%
    memorial posted August 25, 2014 by Judy Cothern, tagged 2014, memorial 
    Oct. 10, 1950 - Aug. 14, 2014
    Kathleen Lorraine Casper

    On August 14, 2014, the American Accounting Association lost one if its own:  Kathy Casper. Many of you got to know Kathy during her 16 years with the Association.  As the Web and Database Project Manager, she was instrumental in moving us into the 21st century.  In fact, she worked on early web pages and independently designed, developed and implemented our annual meeting system, enhancing it annually based on the feedback she received from the many volunteers who worked with her. She also implemented the new segment meeting system that was introduced over the past year.

    Outside of work, Kathy was very active in the Faith Lutheran Church where she provided service in many ways.  Having done missionary work in Haiti in 2005, Kathy was devoted to fundraising for Haitian children's education and care.  She was also a passionate writer, publishing many articles and poetry.

    Kathy’s quick wit, creativity, broad smile and kind heart will be deeply missed by all who knew her.  If you have memories of Kathy you’d like to share with her sister and three daughters, please email them to  Additionally, in Kathy’s honor, charitable donations can be made to the Faith Lutheran Church for the Haiti Fund care of Faith Lutheran Church, 7750 Beneva Road, Sarasota, FL. 

  • Deirdre Harris
    William Wager Cooper 1914-20121
    memorial posted June 25, 2012 by Deirdre Harris, tagged 2012, memorial 
    William W. Cooper was born on July 23, 1914 in Birmingham, Alabama and died on June 20, 2012 in Austin, Texas.  He grew up in a rough neighborhood in Chicago. After his father became ill, he had to drop out of high school to support his family, and he worked at a variety of odd jobs, including as a professional boxer.  His record:  58 wins, 3 losses, and 2 draws. 
    Eric L. Kohler, an Arthur Andersen & Co. partner who taught accounting at Northwestern University, picked Bill up as a hitch-hiker one day on his way to another of his jobs, as a golf caddie.  Kohler soon became his mentor and friend, and he loaned him the money to enter the University of Chicago.  While at the university, he became friends with fellow student Herbert A. Simon. In 1938, he received an A.B. degree, majoring in economics, and he then accompanied Kohler to the Tennessee Valley Authority, where Kohler served as Comptroller. Bill assisted him by applying his analytical skills to developing the TVA’s required auditing systems and procedures.
    In 1940, Bill entered the Ph.D. program in business at Columbia University. After completing the coursework in two years, his research was so advanced for its day that his thesis committee could not judge, and would not approve, his thesis.  As Bill later said, he “fought the committee to a draw.”  In 1942, Bill again followed Kohler, this time to U.S. Bureau of the Budget to help with the war effort, where he was put in charge of all the government’s accounting-related statistics.   
    In May 1944, he met Ruth, his future wife, in Washington, DC.
    After a brief return to the University of Chicago, Bill joined the Carnegie Institute of Technology (today Carnegie Mellon University) in 1946.  Together with George Leland (Lee) Bach and Herbert Simon, he was one of the founding fathers of Carnegie Tech’s Graduate School of Industrial Administration (now the Tepper School of Business).  They pioneered a scientific, interdisciplinary approach to business education, eventually with Ford Foundation support, that is now the norm in leading business schools, and their effort was a key intellectual driver in the development of CMU. 
    From the outset, Bill espoused the need for problem-driven research.  Together with long-term collaborator Abraham Charnes, he developed important new mathematical techniques (for example, goal programming, chance-constrained programming, and data envelopment analysis) in the search of solutions to particular applied problems. Their work created a new field, called management science, and Bill was the founding president of The Institute of Management Sciences (which is now part of the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences).  In 1968, he became the first dean of CMU’s School of Urban and Public Affairs (now Heinz College). 
    From 1975 to 1980, he was the Arthur Lowes Dickinson Professor at the Harvard Business School, where he developed and supervised an improved Ph.D. program.  In 1980, George Kozmetsky, the dean of the business school at the University of Texas at Austin, hired Bill as the Foster Parker Professor of Management, Finance and Accounting, thus bridging three departments. He became emeritus in 1993. Throughout his career, he advised numerous Ph.D. students, including Andrew Stedry, Andrew Whinston, and Yuji Ijiri at Carnegie Mellon, Rajiv Banker at Harvard, and Ramayya Krishna at UT-Austin.
    Bill was an immensely prolific researcher, even in the last years of his life.  Of his more than 545 scientific publications, 35 were in accounting and auditing.  In 1981, he became the founding editor of the Auditing Section’s new journal, Auditing: A Journal of Practice & Theory.  In 1988, the Section gave him its distinguished service award.  In 1985, he was one of the influential voices behind the founding of Accounting Horizons. In 1986, he served as the AAA’s Distinguished International Visiting Professor in Latin America. He received the AAA’s Outstanding Accounting Educator Award in 1990, and in 1995 he was inducted into the Accounting Hall of Fame.
    Bill received numerous other awards for his research and academic leadership, including the esteemed John von Neumann Theory Prize in 1982, together with Charnes and Richard Duffin.
    Together with Ijiri, in 1979 Bill edited a collection of papers in honor of his mentor: Eric Louis Kohler: Accounting’s Man of Principles. Also together with Ijiri, in 1983 he compiled and edited the sixth edition of Kohler’s Dictionary for Accountants.
    Bill had a wide expanse of knowledge, and he could talk intelligently on any subject raised in conversation, whether in science, the arts, philosophy, sports, business, or politics. And he always made others feel as if they were on his level.  He cared intensely about people and ideas, and he was always in search of ways to improve the human condition.
    Until the last weeks of his life, Bill would come to the office every day to pursue his research.
    His wife Ruth, a lawyer and advocate of human rights, died in 2000 after 55 years of marriage. He is survived by his brother Leon and his sister Emilie.  In addition, he leaves behind numerous former students and colleagues who came to regard Bill and Ruth Cooper as their godparents.

    --Jonathan C. Glover

    --Yuji Ijiri

    --Stephen A. Zeff

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  • Steven J Huddart
    Charles R. Enis
    memorial posted December 9, 2015 by Steven J Huddart, tagged memorial 
    September 15, 1946 - November 25, 2015
    Charles Enis at Nationals Park, the home ballpark of his beloved Washington Nats

    Professor Charles R. Enis, a faculty member for 34 years at the Smeal College of Business of The Pennsylvania State University, died of cancer at his home on November 25. He was 69.
    Charles was an expert in taxation, public policy, and judgment and decision-making in accounting.
    He was born in Baltimore and earned his undergraduate, MBA, and doctoral degrees, all from the University of Maryland.  He was also a CPA. He joined Penn State in 1981.
    He authored over ninety publications, including more than thirty articles in scholarly journals such as Accounting, Organizations, and Society; Decision Sciences; the Journal of Accounting Research; and the Journal of the American Taxation Association.
    Charles was devoted to his students and would try to involve them in tax law considerations drawn from his own life.  He loved to vacation in Ocean City, MD, had a home there, and drove a 1973 Eldorado convertible.  These facts were prominent in the tax cases he wrote for his students to analyze.  Were improvements to the vacation property tax deductible? How many days could the property be rented in year without attracting tax?
    Ed Ketz remembers Charles as a walking encyclopedia of tax knowledge. For any tax question, Charles knew the answer, the relevant code section, and even the form.
    Charles’ encyclopedic knowledge extended to three other subjects: baseball, pharmaceuticals, and ballroom dancing.  He was a lifelong Baltimore Orioles and Washington Nationals supporter and a hard-playing member of the Smeal Accounting Department's softball team.  He served as a pharmacy specialist in the Army and Army Reserve at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. And, he loved ballroom dancing with Gloria.
    Many of us were able to pay our respects at the Indiantown Gap National Cemetery were Charles was buried with military honors.  Others gathered at his favorite bar, Otto’s in State College, to swap our many stories about Charles.
    He is survived by his wife Gloria, son Mark, daughter Megan May, and two grandchildren.

  • Nancy Maciag
    Mark Trombley
    memorial posted February 5, 2015 by Nancy Maciag 

    Mark Trombley, Beach Fleischman Professor of Accounting, died unexpectedly at his home on January 20, 2015.  Mark had been a member of the Eller faculty at the University of Arizona since 1990 when he completed his doctoral degree at the University of Washington.  Prior to that, he worked for Deloitte, a Big Four CPA firm, from 1976 to 1986. 

    Mark was known as a selfless colleague who was very generous with his time and talents.  He published over 20 articles in high quality accounting and finance journals. His research focused on financial accounting issues of contemporary debate in the academic as well as the professional community. In particular, he examined stock market efficiency in using accounting data to value a firm, factors affecting accounting method choices by firms, and the relevance of accounting data for firm valuation. He was active nationally in providing service to the accounting research community, serving on the editorial board of The Accounting Review from 2005-2008 and then as an editor from 2008-2011.  He was an ad hoc reviewer for many different accounting and finance journals and was a member of several American Accounting Association research-oriented committees, such as the Wildman Award Committee and the best dissertation award for the Financial Accounting and Reporting Section.

    Mark was an award-winning teacher who won recognition from the college and the Arizona State CPA Society.  He taught a variety of courses at the undergraduate, MBA, and PhD levels. Students greatly appreciated his teaching style and highly respected his knowledge of the subject matter. He wrote a textbook on accounting for derivatives and hedging.  In addition, accounting doctoral students benefited greatly from Mark’s time and attention. He was a committee member for over 30 doctoral students and provided research assistance and guidance over time to nearly every doctoral student in the accounting program during his tenure as a faculty member.

  • Nancy Maciag
    George Roudebush Catlett 1917-2013
    memorial posted June 5, 2014 by Nancy Maciag 

    George Roudebush Catlett (1917-2013)

    George R. Catlett, the senior technical partner of Arthur Andersen & Co. from 1962 to 1980, died on October 10, 2013 in Pewaukee, Wisconsin. He was born on August 14, 1917 in Fairmount, Illinois, where he grew up. He received B.S. and M.S. degrees in accounting from the University of Illinois and was hired in 1940 by Arthur E. Andersen to join his firm in its Chicago office. He did procurement work for the Army Ordnance Corps from 1942 to 1946, becoming a major. He rejoined Arthur Andersen & Co. as a manager, and, after Andersen died in 1947, Leonard Spacek succeeded him as managing partner. 

    Catlett became a partner in 1952. He served in the firm’s St. Louis office from 1953 to 1958, following which he returned to the Chicago home office and in 1962 was elected chairman of the firm’s committee on accounting principles and auditing procedures. He became Spacek’s right hand, drafting his speeches, but he also spoke and wrote extensively himself. His long tenure as chairman of the committee ended in 1980, when he retired from the firm.

    With partner Norman O. Olson, he wrote Accounting for Goodwill, which was Accounting Research Study No. 10 sponsored by the Accounting Principles Board (APB) in 1968. In 1973, Arthur Andersen & Co. published a collection of Catlett’s and Olson’s speeches and articles under the title, In Pursuit of Professional Goals: Addresses and Articles 1960-1972.

    In 1965, Catlett succeeded Spacek on the APB and was as one of the most active members of the board until he stepped down in 1971, having served when the board issued most of its significant pronouncements. He was APB vice-chairman from 1968 to 1971.  He was the lone dissenter in 1970 to APB Statement No. 4 on accounting principles, because he believed that the determination of what should be the objectives of accounting was an urgent matter that had not been settled in the Statement. He dissented to APB Opinion No. 17 on intangible assets, because he, like Spacek, believed that goodwill should be deducted from stockholders’ equity. He would have dissented to Opinion No. 16 on business combinations, also issued in 1970, but for the fact that his negative vote would have scuttled the Opinion, and the board had agreed that both Opinions had to be approved else the SEC would have issued regulations.

    Ever the gentleman, Catlett could disagree without being disagreeable. He staunchly supported Spacek’s crusade to rid GAAP of optional treatments and to establish the objectives of financial accounting.

    He was president of the Illinois Society of Certified Public Accountants in 1966-67 and was vice-president of the AICPA in 1976-77. 

    In 1982, he published a book on the Catlett families in Virginia and Illinois.

    He married Martha Jane Beamsley in 1944. He is survived by four sons, their children, and a sister. His wife died in 2007.

    - Stephen A. Zeff

  • Nancy Maciag
    George J. Staubus
    memorial posted April 18, 2014 by Nancy Maciag, tagged 2014 
    George J. Staubus

    George J. Staubus, the Michael Chetkovich professor emeritus at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business, died on March 21 in Oakland, Calif., from bone marrow failure. He was 87.


    Professor Staubus dedicated his life’s work not only to the teaching and research of accounting but to continued improvement of the standards and practices of financial reporting.  Staubus’ colleagues say his work developing the “decision-usefulness theory of accounting” is an important contribution to financial accounting theory in the twentieth century.


    The decision-usefulness theory of accounting provides direction for all accounting and financial reporting choices. Under this theory, the primary objective of financial reporting is to provide information that is useful in making investment decisions. 


    “Professor Staubus was the first to explicitly identify that objective and to link it to enterprise cash flows or a cash flow-oriented view of how assets and liabilities are measured. Staubus' work has surged in importance in recent years as the debate about accounting's underlying theoretical framework is being re-examined by standard setters worldwide,” says Maria Nondorf, executive director, Haas Center for Financial Reporting and Management.


    Prior to Staubus pointing out the importance of cash flows in investment decisions, the theory was solely focused on accounting-based net income. Despite numerous rejections of Staubus’ insight in the 1950’s, the academic community embraced the decision-usefulness theory in the sixties, and the standards-setting community followed suit in the seventies.


    Staubus developed the “decision-usefulness theory of accounting” with his dissertation, An Accounting Concept of Revenue (1954/1980), and two subsequent articles in The Accounting Review (1958 and 1959). The theory was presented in his 1961 book, A Theory of Accounting to Investors.


    More recently, Staubus commented on the theory in the preface of The Decision-Usefulness Theory of Accounting: A Limited History (1999), “From today’s perspective, it is not a broad theory of accounting. The key to the decision-usefulness theory is the decision-usefulness objective. It is the base on which a coherent, broad structure of ideas has been built. No other such structure of accounting ideas has been developed, to my knowledge.”


    Staubus served on the Haas accounting faculty for 40 years, from 1952 until 1992. Post-retirement, he continued to play an active role in the accounting program including by participating in student activities, the annual Center for Financial Reporting and Management conference, and initiating the Berkeley Award for Distinguished Contributions to Financial Reporting, and serving on the Award's selection committee.


    “George was a very serious accounting scholar. He published more articles in The Accounting Review than anyone during his active period. George served as research director of the Financial Accounting Standards Board,” says colleague Alan Cerf, accounting professor emeritus.


    In 2009, Staubus received the Lifetime Achievement Award for Distinguished Contributions to the Accounting Program at the Haas School and the school’s Cheit Award for Excellence in Teaching in the Undergraduate Program in 1991. In 1982, the American Accounting Association named Staubus “Distinguished International Lecturer.” The California Society of Certified Public Accountants honored Staubus with its Distinguished Professor Award in 1981.


    Former Haas School Dean Raymond Miles remembers Staubus’ sage-like personality and demeanor,“George Staubus was a constant source of good advice, particularly in the periods when I held administrative posts. George always presented a calm appearance, one that cooled off heated moments, and lent good cheer to positive situations.  He will be missed.”  


    Staubus is survived by his wife of 65 years, Sarah, and their four children, Lindsay, Martin, Paul, and Janette.

    The family will announce details of a remembrance ceremony at a later date. Contributions in memory of George Staubus may be made to these organizations that were dear to his heart:


    Unitarian Universalist Church of Berkeley
    1 Lawson Rd
    Kensington, CA 94707


    The Lair of the Golden Bear
    Camp Blue c/o Cal Alumni Association
    1 Alumni House
    Berkeley, CA 94720-7520

  • Deirdre Harris
    Abraham J. Briloff 1917 - 2013
    memorial posted January 9, 2014 by Deirdre Harris, tagged 2013, memorial 

    It is with great sadness that we have learned of the passing of a dear friend and wonderful colleague and scholar, Professor Abraham J. Briloff. Abe was 96 years young and continued his scholarly activities – writing and conference presentations -- throughout 2013.

    Professor George Foster at Stanford University termed Abe as the most important accountant in the World. This was no exaggeration: Abe’s contributions to Barron’s changed the practices of auditing and accounting.  Professor Foster also referred to Abe – affectingly -- as “Rambo”. The grain of truth in this appellation refers to the courageous and tenacious manner in which Abe pursued ‘truth in accounting’. 

    Abe’s outstanding contributions were all-the-more significant by the fact that Abe had been clinically blind for most of his life. Gifted with a photographic memory he relied on Baruch students, and later, his daughter, Leonore, to read financial documents to him. Leonore, who is a New York CPA, subsequently co-authored several articles with Abe.

    Abe’s writings were prodigious and influential, including four books: Effectiveness of Accounting Communication; Unaccountable Accounting; More Debits Than Credits: The Burnt Investors' Guide to Financial Statements; and The Truth About Corporate Accounting.

    Abe was a frequently visitor to Washington, testifying before the Moss and Metcalf Committees in the 1970s and more recently the Sarbanes Oxley Congressional Investigation of 2002.

    Abe’s alma mater is Baruch College at the City University of New York. In his frequent presentations at the College he repeatedly expressed his infinite gratitude to the College for providing him with a (free) first rate accounting education. Every presentation began by recalling his indebtedness to the College, and to his legendary mentor, Professor Emanuel Saxe.

    Abe earned a BBA and an MSEd from the then City College (predecessor of Baruch College) in 1937 and 1941 Abe joined Baruch’s accountancy faculty. Abe earned his doctorate in accountancy and taxation from NYU in 1965. He was named the Emanuel Saxe Distinguished Professor of Accountancy at Baruch College in 1976, a title that appended with "emeritus" an insignia that he held for the remainder of his life.

    Abe’s demise is a great loss to the Profession and the Academic Community. As editors, we have always recognized Abe’s writing and teachings over the years; that they retain a resonance with today’s issues, debates and (Abe would never shrink from the terms) “controversies and scandals”. In this spirit, we will continue our practice of reprinting sections of Abe’s books and articles—ensuring that Abe’s legacy will endure long after his untimely demise.

    Our sympathies are extended to Abe’s whole family, notably Leonore A. Briloff and Alice Ebenstein.

    Submitted by:

    Professor Anthony Tinker, Baruch College at the City University of New York

    Professor Aida Sy, Marist College, Poughkeepsie, New York

  • Deirdre Harris
    Adolf Jan Henri Enthoven 1928-2013
    memorial posted March 21, 2013 by Deirdre Harris, tagged 2013, memorial 


    Adolf Enthoven was born on April 2, 1928 in Nijmegen, The Netherlands, and died on March 15, 2013 in Richardson, Texas. He obtained a Ph.D. in bedrijfseconomie (business economics, which includes accounting) and economics in 1960 from the Nederlandse Economische Hogeschool (Netherlands School of Economics), today the Erasmus University Rotterdam, studying under Nobel Laureate Jan Tinbergen. In 1953, he had received a Master of Commerce degree from the University of Toronto, Canada, and in 1957 he had taken an advanced diploma from the Institute of Social Studies in The Hague. He came to the U.S. in 1953 and eventually became a naturalized American citizen.

    From 1957 to 1963, Adolf was employed in Europe with Coopers & Lybrand, and then was a senior investment officer at the World Bank for three years. Thereafter he held successive short-term academic posts at the Institute of Advanced Social Studies in The Hague, the University of Illinois, Harvard University, and the University of North Carolina. In 1976, he joined the faculty of the University of Texas at Dallas, where he remained as professor of accounting until the time of his death. In 2010, a distinguished professorship in his name was set up in UT Dallas’ Naveen Jindal School of Management, where he had built the accounting program and was director of its Center for International Accounting Development for many years.

    An intrepid student of accounting education and the accounting function in developing countries and emerging economies around the world, Adolf wrote many books and articles on these themes. Among his signature books were Accounting and Economic Development Policy (1973), Accounting Systems in Third World Economies (1977), and Accounting Education in Economic Development Management (1981), all of which were published by Elsevier-North Holland. He was an adviser on accounting education to the World Bank and the U.S. Agency for International Development, and was an adviser also to the Soros Foundation. Much of his research on behalf of world development bodies, as reflected in his books and articles, dealt with Africa, the Asia-Pacific region, and Russia. He contributed immensely to an understanding of the role of accounting in global economic development.

    Adolf is survived by a sister, Suzanna (Suus) Lundberg-Enthoven, and a brother, Rudolf (Rudi) Enthoven, as well as by nephews and nieces.

    -Stephen A. Zeff

  • Deirdre Harris
    Walter G. Kell 1921-2013
    memorial posted March 13, 2013 by Deirdre Harris, tagged 2013, memorial 
    December 23, 1921 - February 10, 2013


    Walter G. Kell of Tampa, FL. (formerly of Ann Arbor, MI) died peacefully on February 10, 2013 at the age of 91. Walt was born on December 23, 1921 to Walter F. and Beatrice Iva Kell in Chicago, IL. He graduated from Kankakee High School in 1939.  In April1943 Walt was drafted into the Navy and in September was chosen for the V-12 program (an officer's training program that allowed him to go to school).  As part of this program, he finished his freshman year at Notre Dame and was sent to the University of Michigan in March 1944.  Walt continued at the University of Michigan after his discharge from the Navy in 1945, receiving his BBA in 1946 and MBA in 1947.  While at the University of Michigan Walt lettered in basketball and baseball (1944-46). In 1946 he married Dorothy Polk (deceased). In 1947 Walt received his Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license in the state of Illinois and entered the doctoral program at the University of Illinois. He received his PhD in accounting in 1952 and went on to serve on the faculty at Michigan State University and Syracuse University where he later became chairman of the accounting department. In 1961Walt returned to the University of Michigan as a visiting professor and became a full professor in 1962.  

    During his career Walt was elected President of the American Accounting Association (1963); became a member of the Auditing Standards Advisory Council of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (1970); was appointed to the Board of Directors of the Michigan Association of CPA's (1979-1985), receiving their Distinguished Service Award in 1986.  Walt was also a member of the Board of Control of Intercollegiate Athletics (1969-1975) and a board member and secretary/treasurer of the M-Club during his time at the University of Michigan. Walt co-authored two text books and was a consulting editor and co-editor of The Accountants Handbook

    In 1976 Walt married Linda Kopec. He is survived by his loving and devoted wife of 37 years, Linda; children, Linda, Gary, Gayanne and Bill and their spouses; grandchildren, Shaunna, Rick, Ryan, Eli and Maya; five great grandchildren; sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Juanita and George; and numerous nieces, nephews, grand-nieces and grand­ nephews.  Walt's parents and brother Bob preceded him in death. Contributions in memory of Walt can be made to the University of Michigan or the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson Research.

  • Judy Cothern
    Herbert Elmer Miller 1914-2012
    memorial posted January 9, 2013 by Judy Cothern, tagged memorial 
    August 11, 1914 — December 21, 2012

    Herbert E. Miller was born on August 11, 1914 in DeWitt, Iowa. He died in Athens, Georgia on December 21, 2012 following a long illness. Herb received an A.B. in 1936 and an M.A. in 1937 from the University of Iowa and then received a Ph.D. in 1944 from the University of Minnesota. He served on the accounting faculties of Simpson College (1937-38), the University of Minnesota (1938-44), the University of Iowa (1945), the University of Michigan (1946-61), and Michigan State University (1961-70) prior to becoming a partner in Arthur Andersen & Co., where he proceeded to lead a movement to establish and gain accreditation for schools of accounting. In 1978, upon reaching the mandatory retirement age at the firm, he joined the University of Georgia as the first director of its J. M. Tull School of Accounting. He retired from the university in 1983. The School created an accounting chair in his name in 1988.