Tag Archives: Michelle Kerrick

Successful Business Women Add Philanthropic Endeavors - AZ Business Magazine Nov/Dec 2010

Three Successful Business Women Add Philanthropic Endeavors To Their Already Busy Work-Life Balance

Giving back to the community is an important component of being a true success in the business world. As the greatest minds in history have declared, responsibility is the companion of power and privilege.

Regardless of workloads or fluctuations in the economy, true business leaders — whether they are corporate executives or entrepreneurs — have acted as stewards of their communities. In recent decades, family life has been added to the mix, making the work-life- philanthropic balance even more challenging, especially for women. But it can and is done every day.

Jordan Rose is the founder and president of Rose Law Group pc, the largest law firm in Arizona ever owned by a woman. She is also a mother of two young boys, and for the past 11 years has been an integral member of the American Heart Association’s Arizona Heart Ball Committee.

Rose’s inspiration to pursue law came from her father, also an attorney, who loved going to work every day.

“I never think of it as work,” she says. “I love what I do, it’s the perfect fit for me.”

The perfect fit means having a team that shares her enthusiasm, work ethic and high standards, so Rose can have time for family and charitable pursuits.

“I wake up every day quite grateful that I have others around to help me do all the things I find tremendously rewarding,” Rose says.

What Rose finds rewarding is giving her time and expertise to not-for-profit organizations such as the Arizona American Heart Association, a group that for more than 50 years has been dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke — and subsequently poured millions of dollars into this community to support life-saving programs.

“My husband’s family has a history of heart disease, and I have a passion for making any small attempt I can at helping support the medical professionals who are currently researching a cure,” she says.

Rose’s legal and business expertise give her the ability to further support this cause by reviewing and restructuring contracts, so the Phoenix Heart Ball can maintain its low cost-to-fundraising ratio, while at the same time limiting any risk or exposure to members and donors. It’s a charity she loves and a business model she admires.

“I think for-profit businesses could learn a lot about motivating people and managing by shadowing the Heart Ball board,” Rose says.

And she has this advice for working moms who also want to serve the community: “Pick a charity that you have a passion for and you will be grateful, as it will make you happy to wake up and be able to give something back.”

Like Rose, Denise Resnik runs her own business. Denise Resnik & Associates is a strategic marketing and public relations firm she started 25 years ago. Also, like Rose, Resnik has a deep, personal connection to a nonprofit, in this case the Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center (SARRC). In 1993, Resnik’s son was diagnosed with autism.

“We were told to love him, accept him and plan to institutionalize him,” Resnik recalls.

Wanting a better life for her son and other children with autism, Resnik used her knowledge and experience as a business owner to find a better outcome.

“I allowed my heart and entrepreneurial spirit be my guide,” she says.

Years later, what started as a mother’s support group is now the 18,000-square-foot Campus for Exceptional Children and a 10,000-square-foot Vocational and Life Skills Academy. Both are focused on advancing research and providing support for thousands of individuals with autism and their families throughout their lifetimes.

“SARRC is another full-time job for me and a major pro bono client for our firm,” Resnik says.

As for finding the work-life balance, Resnik says, “I layer many of my priorities and interests, like creating big ideas and plans, while hiking with friends and colleagues through the Phoenix Mountain Preserve with our son and daughter.”

Her business acumen helped her build SARRC, and in turn SARRC has taught her some valuable business lessons.

“Our board and staff at SARRC lead by example and demonstrate for us all what it takes to make our community a better place, and what businesses and individuals can do to forever impact our community and change lives,” Resnik says, adding that if you’re thinking about volunteering, even if your plate is overflowing, you’ll find a way to make it work.

“The return on your investment will likely exceed your expectations,” she says. “It certainly exceeded mine.”

Michelle Kerrick, managing partner of Deloitte, stands tall alongside Rose and Resnik in terms of the tremendous impact she’s making on the community. She too juggles motherhood, a demanding career and her passion for volunteering.

“My position at Deloitte has a strong market focus, so it can be a win-win-win for me, the firm and the not-for-profit,” she says. “I get the opportunity to meet other key leaders in our community, while also giving back.”

The organization Kerrick “gives so much back to” is Fresh Start Women’s Foundation (FSWF).

“I was inspired by the cause,” Kerrick says. “FSWF is all about women helping women and developing confidence and self-esteem.”

Kerrick knows that financial stewardship is key to success, so it’s no wonder her business, financial and risk management skills benefit a charity like Fresh Start.

“I started my board work with FSWF as the treasurer of the board, held a number of other positions and have also chaired the annual gala fundraiser,” she says. “I believe my background has been particularly helpful in these challenging economic times.”

In turn, her involvement with FSWF has had a tremendous impact on her life.

“When I meet women striving to improve their lives, it makes me more focused to lead a better life and be a better example to my daughter,” Kerrick says.

So although it’s not always easy being the perpetual plate spinner, Kerrick says it’s worthwhile.

“I want to make sure organizations like FSWF are available for the next generation of women.”


Jordan Rose - Rose Law Group pcJordan Rose
Rose Law Group pc

Charitable Organization: Phoenix Heart Ball
Favorite Quote: “Bring all your capacities to a situation and stick with it — apply all you’ve got to make fate unfold.” — Jim Balsillie, R.I.M.


Denise Resnik - Denise Resnik & AssociatesDenise Resnik
Denise Resnik & Associates

Charitable Organization: SARRC/Southwest Autism Research and Resource Center
Favorite Quote: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” — Margaret Mead

Michelle Kerrick - DeloitteMichelle Kerrick
Deloitte

Charitable Organization: Fresh Start Women’s Foundation
Favorite Quote: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” — Mahatma Ghandi

Arizona Business Magazine Nov/Dec 2010

2010 Best of the Best Awards

2010 BOB Awards: Finance & Professional

The following companies won the Gold, Silver and Bronze rankings in the Finance & Professional category of the 2010 BOB Awards.

2010 Best Of The Best Awards: Finance & Professional


2010 Best of the Best AwardsNational Bank of Arizona
Banks: $1B or more in AZ assets

Year Est.: 1984
Branches: 79
Principal(s): John J. Gisi, Keith D. Maio
Assets: $4.8B
nbarizona.com

2010 BOB AwardsWith 25 years of strength, stability and profitability, National Bank of Arizona is one of the state’s premier financial institutions. Since its inception, National Bank of Arizona has been there for its customers, continually searching for new ways to help them meet their financial goals. As a community focused and locally managed bank, we deliver industry-leading product solutions, award-winning service and innovative technology. Through our team of more than 1,100 employees, National Bank of Arizona reaches 55 diverse communities throughout Arizona.


2010 Best of the Best AwardsDeloitte & Touche LLP

Account Firms: 26 CPAs or more

2010 BOB Awards

Year Est.: 1961
CPAs: 88
Managing Partners: Michelle Kerrick
deloitte.com/us

2010 BOB AwardsSnell & Wilmer L.L.P

Law Firms: 65 Attorneys or more

2010 BOB AwardsYear Est.: 1938
AZ Attorneys: 223
Principal(s): John J. Bouma
swlaw.com

2010 Best of the Best Hall of Fame

 

Michelle Kerrick

First Job – Michelle Kerrick

Michelle Kerrick
Managing Partner
Arizona Practice Deloitte, LLP

Describe your very first job and what lessons you learned from it.
My very first job was waiting tables at a Bob’s Big Boy restaurant in Flagstaff during high school. My sister and I had signed up for a ski trip to Utah, but I needed to earn the money over Christmas break to be able to go. After dropping several meals and breaking the coffee pot, I realized that waitressing was not for me — but I learned several great lessons from that job. First, find the areas where you excel and the things you’re passionate about, and second, don’t let hot coffee land on the polyester uniforms!

Describe your first job in your industry and what you learned from it.
I joined Deloitte, which was named Touche Ross at the time, as a staff accountant in 1985. I was recruited from Northern Arizona University and have been here ever since. My dad encouraged me to study accounting. He felt it would be a challenging field and a marketable career. I chose Deloitte because of the energy and warmth of the people I met. That stands true today. I work with an incredible group of very talented individuals. One of the most important lessons I have learned in my 23 years in this profession is the importance of flexibility. When you are a junior staff member, client, industry and team assignments change frequently, which can be intimidating. You have to be able to react to change in a positive way. I also learned that working hard and maintaining a good attitude not only helps you be successful, it fosters a collaborative environment where everyone benefits from the team’s accomplishments.

What were your salaries at both of these jobs?
My restaurant job paid the industry standard for tipped employees: less than minimum wage. In 1979, it was about $2.50 an hour. When I joined Touche Ross in 1985, I was earning a salary of $18,000, plus a $2,000 bonus, and I was thrilled. Who is your biggest mentor and what role did they play? Two mentors influenced me tremendously. The first is a now-retired Deloitte partner named Dave Martin. I had the opportunity to work with Dave for a great portion of my career. He was an impressive leader with remarkable business acumen and taught me a lot about client service and navigating the Deloitte organization. My other mentor is a friend outside of the accounting profession whom I have known for more than 15 years. He helped me hone my business skills and develop the ability to take a long-term, big-picture view, which is critical for any business leader.

What advice would you give to a person just entering your industry?
Work hard and keep a positive attitude. Be flexible to the many changes that will come your way, since every new experience is a learning opportunity. Keep things in perspective: life will go on, and everyone makes mistakes. Strive for balance between work and your personal life — you can’t give 100 percent at work if you don’t take the time to stay healthy and fit.

If you weren’t doing this, what would you be doing instead?
I had always thought about med school; however, given some of the issues facing the health care system, I have no regrets! One of the great aspects of my job is the support and encouragement I receive from the firm to give back to the community. That is certainly something I am passionate about and I hope to always stay active in our community. I currently work with Fresh Start Women’s Foundation, the Maricopa Partnership for Arts and Culture, Greater Phoenix Leadership, Saint Mary’s Food Bank and the United Way. I want to see Phoenix become the metropolitan area that will attract viable companies and great talent.