Young CPAs learn how to make a difference at the Statehouse

Written on Dec 07, 2017

By Jessica Salerno, OSCPA content manager

YCPADayYoung CPAs last week learned that even in today’s complex political landscape they are uniquely positioned to understand and affect policy change.

“We have demonstrated this profession has a significant impact on shaping the political landscape,” said OSCPA President and CEO Scott Wiley, CAE. Wiley gave the introduction last week at the third annual Legislative Leadership in Action Day at the Statehouse.

He spoke about how CPAs have an intimate understanding of knowledge that protects the public and strengthens Ohio’s business community. Toward the end of his introduction, Wiley motioned around the room.

“Never doubt that the role you play is significant, because it is,” he said.

The value of young professional advocacy was a theme throughout the day, when state Representative Derek Merrin, R-Monclova Township, spoke to the group about the importance of getting involved in government, whether that’s through local office or the state legislature.

“Young people need to be the ones to make decisions because they will live with those decisions,” Merrin said. “It’s exciting to see so many highly intelligent and educated young people making  a difference in the state of Ohio.”

The Young CPAs heard from both sides of the aisle when state Representative Emilia Sykes, D-Akron, mentioned the importance of explaining what legislators do every day.

“We need to connect what we do in the statehouse to what young professionals are doing every day,” Sykes said. “So many people think what’s happening at the statehouse is a secret, so whenever we have an opportunity to explain what our jobs are and how the decisions we make impact their lives and their clients’ lives we take it.”

The group also learned more about the role of the OSCPA advocacy team from Barb Benton, CAE, OSCPA’s vice president of governmental relations and Greg Saul, Esq., director of tax policy. They covered OSCPA’s legislative top priorities and how Young CPAs can get involved in advocacy.

Later in the day the Young CPAs headed over to the statehouse where they heard from Sen. John Eklund, Chairman of the Senate Ways and Means Committee, State Rep. Gary Scherer, CPA, R-Circleville, and State Rep. Tim Schaffer, R-Lancaster, chair of the House Ways & Means Committee.

“We need as many people’s voice at the table to make good decisions and events like these let me know our future is in good hands,” Sykes said.

For more information and to get involved, visit OSCPA’s advocacy page or contact Greg Saul, director of tax policy.

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