December 2020 Print

President's Message

Each new year brings a new beginning, an opportunity to reflect on the past and a renewed hope for the future.  I have a message board in my hallway at home and in January 2020 I changed the message to say “January – the beginning of anything you want.”  At the time I wanted to feel less overwhelmed and be more organized – and I was going to update my message board every month with a quote specific to that month.  Well, here were are January 2021 and my message board still says “January – the beginning of anything you want” – HA!  At least it now makes sense again – and I’m still striving to feel less overwhelmed and more organized!  If 2020 taught me anything, it’s to embrace change and appreciate the small things.  I read a quote yesterday that made me think about my perspective on the new year - “An optimist stays up until midnight to see the new year in.  A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves” (Bill Vaughan, writer, columnist).  I think a lot of us wanted to make sure that 2020 left, however instead of focusing on the negative of the challenges of 2020, I encourage you to look forward to the opportunities of 2021!  

The Board and I were hoping to be able to return to in person meetings this month, but in the interest of health and safety we have decided to continue with our virtual meetings at this time.  I am so appreciative of everyone that has attended our events so far and hope to continue to see more of you at our upcoming events!  The next few months will be a busy time for Omaha AFWA – while many of us are preparing for “busy season”, the Board will also be focusing on our scholarship process, securing next year’s Board of Directors and planning the public relations dinner and CPE event.  We will be looking to our members to volunteer to help with committees for each of these tasks. More information will be provided at our January tax update event. 

Happy New Year!   

“Presenting leadership as a list of carefully defined qualities (like strategic, analytical and performance-oriented) no longer holds. Instead, true leadership stems from individuality that is honestly and sometimes imperfectly expressed… Leaders should strive for authenticity over perfection.”
- Sheryl Sandberg (COO, Facebook)


Krystal Elms

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Member Spotlight

Get to Know Susan:

**When did you join AFWA? 
I think it was March 2011 (but not completely certain).
**What is your favorite part about being a member of AFWA?
Learning from and engaging with great women leaders, especially with those who are UNO Accounting alumni!
**What was your first “official” job?
Auditor with Peat Marwick Mitchell (now KPMG)
**Where is your hometown? 
Lumberton, NC
**Where is your favorite vacation spot and why? 
Almost any beach – I love hot weather, the ocean breeze and salt water smell, fresh seafood, and walks on the beach!


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Event Registration

Annual Tax Update-  CPE Presentation

Tuesday, January 19th
12:00-1:30pm CST
Via Zoom (link to follow)

Register Here

Virtual meeting with Presentation to follow!

Information provided by James M. Anderson, Partner at BKD. 

A member of BKD National Construction & Real Estate Group, BKD National Manufacturing & Distribution Group and the firm’s tax committee, James is experienced in providing corporate and individual taxation assistance to construction companies, financial institutions, manufacturers and retailers across the Midwest.  He also consults with clients regarding accounting method changes, multistate taxation, choice-of-entity analyses, tax controversy support and business combinations
James is a 1997 graduate of University of Nebraska–Lincoln with a B.S. degree in business administration and is a graduate of Leadership Lincoln. He is actively involved in the United Way of Lincoln & Lancaster County.
James serves as tax director for the Nebraska offices and as regional tax director for the eight states in the North Region.  He has given numerous presentations on current developments in tax legislation and was previously an adjunct professor at University of Nebraska–Lincoln.
James is a member of the American Institute of CPAs and Nebraska Society of Certified Public Accountants & has served on numerous local boards. He is currently on the board of directors for the Lincoln Children’s Zoo Foundation, Tabitha and Country Club of Lincoln.

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Previous Events

We had great converstation discussing the blogs on meal prep and what works for each of us! It was great sharing ideas and tips for each of our family sizes and lifestyles. 

Recipes that were shared were added to the AFWA Recipe book!
Do you have a recipe to share? Click the "AFWA Recipe book" link below to review and/or add a recipe of your own!
AFWA Recipe Book

Book to be shared quarterly!


Thank you for all your support for our Omaha AFWA Holiday Food Drive!
With your generous donations, Omaha AFWA as able to raise $925 for the FOOD BANK for the HEARTLAND!

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Membership Anniversaries

December Anniversaries

  • Lisa Waite - 11 years

  • Trisha Ullman - 5 years

  • Hilary Coufal - 1 year


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AFWA National News


New Leadership Cohort Starting in January. 

Looking to improve your leadership skills?  Join us for our Essential Leadership Training program beginning in January.  This 10-week program will guide you to take control of your success.  Work at your own pace and meet up with other attendees throughout the course or you can go through the program on your own.  Want to form your own cohort?   We are encouraging chapters, businesses, young professionals, students or other groups to form their own cohort.  We have an instructor materials to guide your group through their own cohort.  Click here for more information.  Can’t start in January?  We have 3 cohorts scheduled  for 2021  — January, May and September.  If you are interested in participating in a cohort, please send an email to [email protected].


Thank you to all that helped us raise money during our annual conference.  The Foundation was able to raise over $11,000.  Our work now is more important than ever.  Please keep the Foundation in mind as you shop on Amazon with our amazon smile program and check out our webpage for other ways you can donate to the Foundation.

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Do you know someone who would benefit from an AFWA scholarship?
Would you like to be part of the scholarship review board?
Or perhaps, your company would like to be involved in the sponsorship of giving these scholarships to fine indivduals!

Whether you want to apply, be apart of, or give--
email: [email protected]  to find out more!


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Other News

Friendly reminder to log into the member portal and ensure your contact information and communication preferences are up-to-date! To log into the member portal, click here

If you are having any difficulties logging into the portal, please contact our Director of Membership at [email protected] 

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Interested in Joining AFWA?

Did you know becoming an AFWA member has a TON of great benefits, like 20% off ALL Wiley Test Prep Products? If you've been thinking about becoming a member or renewing your membership, this seems like a great added bonus!

If you already are a member, login to your member portal for a list of the benefits being an AFWA member comes with. 

For more information about joining Omaha AFWA and becoming a member of AFWA, please visit

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Check Us Out on Social Media

Like the "Accounting and Financial Women’s Alliance - Omaha" Facebook page and follow @OmahaAFWA on Twitter and Instagram!

 Give us a “like” for event reminders, Tip Tuesday and Wellness Wednesday posts, accounting humor, and much more!
Like us on Facebook     Follow us on Twitter     View our profile on LinkedIn     View on Instagram


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Board of Directors

2019-2020 AFWA Omaha Chapter Board of Directors

President - Krystal Elms, CPA
Seim Johnson, LLP
Email: [email protected]

Past President - Rebecca Goodwin, PMP
Bland & Associates, PC

Co-Director of Programming - Amy Thompson, CPA
Rossitto & Associates, LLC

Co-Director of Programming - Chelsea Welch

Treasurer – Amanda Patrick, CPA
Seim Johnson, LLP
Email: [email protected]

Secretary - Courtney Teeter, CPA
Bland & Associates, PC

Director of Membership - Sarah Lucke
The Scoular Company
Email: [email protected]

Director of Communication - Kari Kindler
Aureus Group
Email: [email protected]



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AFWA's Mission

To enable women in all accounting and finance fields to achieve their full potential and to contribute to their profession.

Empowerment  //  Integrity  //  Leadership  //  Passion

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