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AAFCPAs Promotes Four to Partner to Support Continued Growth

Posted By Matthew Boyle, Friday, January 10, 2020

AAFCPAs is excited to announce the promotion of four additional Partners to our leadership team.  Katie Belanger, CPA, Joshua England, LLM, Esq., Courtney McFarland, CPA, MSA, and Michael Pruell, CPA provide best value assurance, tax & advisory solutions, with outstanding service to AAFCPAs’ growing client base of nonprofit organizations, privately-held commercial companies, and high-net-worth individuals. Read more.>>



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AAFCPAs Seeks Tax Leader

Posted By Matthew Boyle, Friday, January 10, 2020

AAFCPAs is in search for an inspirational leader of our firm’s growing Tax practice.  This dynamic motivator of people may be an Attorney or a CPA Partner and is able to oversee and/or provide thought leadership in corporate and individual tax compliance as well as advisory.  The ideal candidate will bring high energy, creative ideas, and an entrepreneurial spirit to our firm who is investing in building our tax practice with impactful consulting.  This person wants to make a difference with their work career and takes great pleasure in growing and leading a team by example to be known for excellence in client service.  This go-getter will collaborate with other Partners and oversee the tax team’s training and development and empower tax team members to grow in overall excellence. Read more.>>

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Jeff Mead Talks about AAFCPAs Partnership with FEI Boston's on Radio Entrepreneurs

Posted By Matthew Boyle, Monday, December 16, 2019

Partner Jeff Mead from AAFCPAs talks about the benefits of being a member of FEI including connections with other members and the opportunities to expand your network. In particular, becoming involved in a committee as a way to effectively integrate within the FEI organization. He explains that what you get “out of FEI” is related to what you “put into FEI.”


Interview with Jeff Mead, Partner, AAFCPAs:


Website: (Video & Audio Podcast)- Click Here


Youtube: (Video) - Click Here

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Upstream Trusts May Be Solution to Eliminate Capital Gains

Posted By Matthew Boyle, Wednesday, December 11, 2019

In light of recent increases in limits for federal estate tax exemptions under the Tax Cuts and Job Acts (TCJA), AAFCPAs advises clients to consider the suitability of an Upstream Trust as a strategy for taxpayers who have highly appreciated assets to save money on capital gains tax.

Upstream Trusts are a new option that AAFCPAs utilizes since the passing of TCJA, which involves taking advantage of the largely unused estate tax exemption of older relatives and the step-up in basis under IRC § 1014.



Tags:  aafcpas  capital gains  fei partner  upstream trusts 

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AAFCPAs Expands Cannabis Practice with the Addition of Kevin Michaelan, MST, CPA

Posted By Matthew Boyle, Friday, October 25, 2019

Boston, MA – AAFCPAs, a best-in-class CPA and consulting firm known for assurance, tax, accounting, wealth management, valuation, business process, and IT advisory solutions, today announced the addition of Kevin Michaelan, MST, CPA as Director, Cannabis Practice.

Kevin is an experienced tax professional with a national presence in the cannabis market. He leads AAFCPAs’ burgeoning Cannabis Practice, advising plant-touching businesses and investors throughout the business lifecycle, including start-ups, entities expanding into multi-state operations (MSOs), and those planning lucrative exits.


Tags:  AAFCPAs 

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New Lease Standard, Effective 2020 for Private Companies and Most Nonprofits

Posted By Matthew Boyle, Thursday, May 9, 2019
Updated: Thursday, May 9, 2019

In February 2016, FASB issued Accounting Standards Update (ASU) 2016-02, Leases (Topic 842) to increase transparency and comparability of lease transactions. There are elements of the new standard which will likely impact almost all entities to some extent, although lessees will likely see the most significant changes with their accounting for and reporting of lease agreements. Because of the significant changes contained in this ASU, the effective date for implementing the new accounting guidance was pushed to 2020 for private companies and most nonprofits. FASB has taken advantage of the intervening period of time between issuance and effective dates to provide various improvements and practical expedients.

In this detailed Whitepaper, AAFCPAs has outlined the significant changes resulting from the new ASU for your convenience, and provides details and insights related to the practical expedients and improvements.

This ASU applies to all entities that enter into a lease.

Read AAFCPAs’ detailed Lease Standard Whitepaper to learn what leesees and lessors need to know. >>

If you have questions about how the new Leases ASU will impact you, please contact Olga Yasinnik, CPA, MBA at, 774.512.4082; Jeffrey Mead, CPA, CGMA, at 774.512.4143,; or your AAFCPAs Partner.

Tags:  AAFCPAs  leases 

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How to Help Reluctant Leaders Discover Their Full Potential

Posted By Administration, Thursday, March 21, 2019

March 2019



How to Help Reluctant Leaders Discover Their Full Potential


Investing in future leaders is a strategic imperative for any business. Sometimes, it includes helping employees to discover their leadership potential — and fully embrace it. 


On your team, you may find professionals who can’t wait to become managers and are laser-focused on achieving that goal. Meanwhile, there are other employees who may not want to become leaders at all. And then, you may have some reluctant leaders. Lack of confidence may be holding back these staff members. Or, they may not see a clear path up for themselves in the organization, or even realize that opportunities exist for them to grow and advance.


So, it’s likely that some of your employees will be very proactive about seeking out leadership development opportunities and asking for your guidance. And there also may be a number of high-potential employees who can benefit from you nudging them in the right direction.


How do you do that? By creating a work environment that not only challenges all employees with leadership aspirations to step up, but also gives them the support to do so confidently. Here are five ways to encourage reluctant leaders, in particular, to spread their wings:


1. Talk about what leadership looks like

Certain employees may be reluctant to step forward as managerial candidates because they feel they’re not competitive enough to land a leadership role. Yet Robert Half Management Resources research shows that the most valued leadership trait is integrity, followed by qualities such as fairness, empathy and strategic thinking. 


Make sure your team members understand what it takes to succeed as an executive in the company. They may rethink their own potential when they realize they do actually have the qualities needed to climb the leadership ladder. 


One more thing: Lead by example. Be the type of manager you want employees to emulate.


2. Start small

Projects are a great way to let employees stretch their abilities, gain new skills and, perhaps most importantly, build confidence. Depending on the nature of the project, the work can also help to raise the employee’s visibility in your department, and at the company as a whole.


Give reluctant leaders an assignment with some degree of responsibility and see if they rise to the occasion. If they have potential, this is where they’ll begin to prove themselves. As they succeed, steer them toward increasingly challenging roles.


But be sure to set them up for success. Give nascent leaders clearly defined goals, a fixed time frame for goal completion, and all the support and resources they need to get the job done. That includes letting other employees know that you’ve asked their teammate to lead the project. That can help ensure that an emerging leader’s initial management experience will be a positive one.


3. Give them a coach

Mentoring is an invaluable professional development tool. Your challenge is finding the right person who can help to guide and nurture a reluctant leader. What would that mentor look like? Perhaps someone who was also once hesitant about moving into a management role and can dispel some myths of what leadership is and isn’t?


Emerging leaders don’t need hand-holding, but they do need plenty of constructive feedback and encouragement. A good mentor isn’t a boss or drill sergeant, but rather a coach and motivator who inspires their charge to uncover their potential and take smart risks in their career.


4. Play to their strengths

Don’t force budding leaders, reluctant or not, through a one-size-fits-all training program. Instead, help guide them in a way that accentuates or refines the leadership skills or personality traits they already have.


However, a leadership candidate should build new abilities, too, not just shore up existing ones. Be sure to provide training that allows the employee to grow current strengths while stretching into new areas, too.


5. Don’t insist on one path

You may think of career progression as a straight line from intern to chief financial officer (CFO), with clearly defined intervals and job titles along the way. But do your employees feel the same way? Sometimes, reluctant leaders are prepared to step up to the challenge but don’t agree with your company’s traditional path.


That is especially true of millennial professionals, who don’t necessarily buy into the idea of “paying one’s dues” the old-fashioned way — moving up the ladder slowly, one rung at a time. Unconventional thinking? Not really. If someone is right for a job, why should they have to wait several years for their shot? If your goal is to encourage millennial and Gen Z team members to assume the mantle of leadership one day, you may have to rethink your firm’s overall approach to hiring and promotions.


Prioritize your company’s needs first

While it would be great if you had the time and resources to invest in every aspiring leader on your team at once, you need to take a strategic approach to professional development and succession planning. Of course, you should try to connect every promising employee with an array of relevant opportunities, but you will need to prioritize the training of some workers.


Before grooming future leaders, take a good look at your current organizational chart. Who could take over for managers nearing retirement age, or looking to transition to a different role? Who could take the lead in areas where the business plans to grow? And who will help the firm meet new challenges, like navigating digital disruptions, and spearhead projects involving advanced analytics, cloud services, blockchain, cryptocurrency, artificial intelligence, and more?


Your company’s reluctant leaders may be the answer to all of those questions. Just be sure to confirm that they are, in fact, reluctant. Their hesitation to pursue managerial roles could be because they simply aren’t interested — not everyone wants to be a leader, after all. But if they do want the chance to step up, then there’s no time to waste in getting these employees on the leadership development track. 


What’s most important is that you ask all of your employees how they’d like to grow their career at your firm. If you don’t, you risk overlooking (and not developing) promising leadership talent on your team. And check in about this regularly: As professionals advance in their careers, their goals often evolve, too. Today’s reluctant leader could be tomorrow’s deeply committed CFO.

This article is provided courtesy of Robert Half Management Resources, the premier provider of senior-level accounting, finance and business systems professionals to supplement companies' project and interim staffing needs. The company has more than 135 locations worldwide and offers online job search services at Follow our blog at

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AAFCPAs ups the ante with $31k in donations for Giving Tuesday

Posted By Administration, Monday, December 10, 2018
AAFCPAs ups the ante with $31k in donations for Giving Tuesday

Through its Giving Tuesday efforts, AAFCPAs raised $31k to donate to a range of charities selected by employees. The firm provided a 1:1 match on employee donations, resulting in a total well above its 2017 Giving Tuesday fundraise of $17k. In addition to financial donations, the firm organized drives for essential family items, educational toys, and blankets for animal shelters. 

“Our employees appreciate the firm’s 10% Back to Nonprofits program, and our annual participation in Giving Tuesday when they can double their donations,” said Dave McManus, AAFCPAs’ co-managing partner. “This program inspires employees to support causes they care about, and together we are working to bring more resources to the nonprofits that are changing our world.”

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AAFCPAs & MENTOR’s Partnership in Charting a Sustainable Future

Posted By Administration, Wednesday, October 31, 2018

AAFCPAs & MENTOR’s Partnership in Charting a Sustainable Future

How Did One Nonprofit Explore Creative Approaches to a Sustainable Model?

For nonprofits, charting the future is complex. The search for creative, strategic approaches to sustainability is continuous, and many organizations have struggled to achieve long term, mission-aligned profitability.


In its work with MENTOR: The National Mentoring Partnership, AAFCPAs evaluated the organization’s financial and operational position and helped illuminate avenues for growth. Their work together led to an improved outlook, an expansion of the organization’s impact, and a new chapter sparked by positive momentum.



"For the AAFCPAs Team, it wasn't just about the numbers" - David Shapiro, Mentor IncWhen MENTOR was founded in 1990, its mission was groundbreaking: the organization built a national movement to foster relationships between at-risk children and adults. MENTOR was a pioneer in the field, providing standards, training, advocacy, and public awareness through its national network of affiliates.


Their programs made a significant impact, but success brought new challenges. Mentoring as a discipline became more mainstream, new programs proliferated, and MENTOR’s mission and delivery model needed to keep pace in order to thrive.


MENTOR brought on new leadership, CEO David Shapiro, to seek solutions. The urgency was clear: to survive long term, the organization needed to recapture its original entrepreneurial spirit and rethink its relevance in this new environment.


Part of Mr. Shapiro’s process was to take a forensic approach to spending control, performing a deep analysis into which investments were productive, which posed unnecessary risks, and how they might develop more reliable revenue. He and MENTOR’s Chief Finance and Administrative Officer, Beth Tallarico, turned to AAFCPAs to help provide an objective, outside perspective.


Obstacles & Challenges

With MENTOR’s original model in question, the organization knew it needed a change in direction. There were a number of issues to contend with:


·         MENTOR needed to re-assess the needs of the wider marketplace in the context of its mission. There is no doubt that the model was valuable when mentoring was a younger field, but the new climate required a different approach to stay relevant.

·         There was internal skepticism about the organization’s ability to continue to successfully fundraise under the current model. How could MENTOR be successful as an organization that made its name serving as an intermediary, when plenty of self-sufficient programs had now emerged? They needed to go back out into the world to investigate how they could be most valuable to their constituents.

·         Going one step further, MENTOR’s development efforts were falling into a common trap. They became overly reliant on financial commitments from a few dedicated Board members. This led to a concentration of fundraising that presented significant risk. As AAFCPAs noted, this trend could have led the organization to lose its nonprofit status, shifting closer to the definition of a private foundation.

·         Solutions


With a global objective to add value, AAFCPAs went beyond the traditional core function of an auditor, getting the full picture of challenges, vision and the evolution of the organization both historically and in real time.


Read more about how MENTOR explored new avenues, remained attentive to risks, and geared its model for responsible growth. Download the full Client Success Story, which also features video clips of Shapiro sharing stories of adaptability in the pursuit of long-term financial and programmatic sustainability.>>

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AAFCPAs Hosts 3-Part Tax Planning Webinar Series, Guidance on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

Posted By Administration, Friday, October 12, 2018

AAFCPAs Hosts 3-Part Tax Planning Webinar Series, Guidance on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

Information continues to emerge as a result of the monumental Tax Cuts & Jobs Act.  For privately-held companies, the TCJA impacts your financial statements, operating model, liquidity, investments and capital, and people. For individuals, the TCJA impacts personal withholdings, charitable giving, family & education, retirement, and estate planning.


AAFCPAs’ timely, 3-Part Webinar Series will feature some of the most significant TCJA changes and their potential impact on tax planning. Please read below our detailed agenda for each session.


Register for one, two, or all three sessions. Learn more and register at:


2018 Year-End Tax Planning for Privately-Held Companies

Part 1: October 17th, 9-10am


AAFCPAs will provide guidance on:

·         How the decrease in tax rate impacts choice of entity

·         The impact of new regulations, including:

o   Meals & entertainment

o   Limited interest deduction

o   Depreciation changes

o   Uniform Capitalization (UNICAP)

o   Accounting method change procedures, and Form 3115, Application for Change in Accounting Method

o   Taxability of qualified fringe benefits

o   Changes in cash basis limits

o   And more…

·         Repatriation tax on foreign earnings, or Sec. 965

·         Q&A


2018 Year-End Tax Planning for Privately-Held Companies

Part 2: October 23rd, 9-10am


AAFCPAs will provide guidance on:

·         The impact of the TCJA on the new Sec. 199A deduction for qualified business income, also known as the “flow through deduction”

·         The U.S. Supreme Court’s Wayfair Decision, and how it impacts state and local tax strategies

·         Succession planning considerations, including: how the TCJA may impact your buy/sell agreement

·         Q&A


2018 Year-End Tax Planning for Individuals & Families

October 25th, 9-10am


AAFCPAs will provide guidance on:

·         The impact of new regulations, including:

o   The new withholding tables

o   The Child Tax Credit

o   Standard and itemized deductions

o   State tax exemptions, and caps

o   Watching out for AMT triggers

o   The cap on state taxes

o   The Sec. 199A deduction for qualified business income, also known as the “flow through deduction”

·         The impact on Personal Financial Planning, including:

o   Estate planning

o   Charitable planning

·         Q&A


We will provide ample time at the end of each session to allow attendees to ask AAFCPAs’ Tax Advisors & Wealth Strategists any burning questions.


AAFCPAs takes great pride in the role we play serving as an educational resource for our clients. We are committed to providing insight, and keeping our clients up-to-date on the complexities of the TCJA. We are well versed in the full range of tax-reduction strategies for businesses and individuals, and can provide the advice you need, based on our deep knowledge of tax law, and our years of experience advising clients like you.

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