Three CohnReznick Professionals Named 2017 recipients of the NJCPA Diversity & Inclusion Impact Award
June 15, 2017 – Roseland, NJ – CohnReznick's Bayaan Oluyadi, Carolyn D'Anna, and Atit Shah were among a prestigious group of recipients awarded the 2017 NJCPA Diversity & Inclusion Impact Award. The announcement was made June 15 at the 2017 NJCPA Annual Convention & Expo in Atlantic City, NJ.
The NJCPA created this award to recognize individuals who are diverse or who champion diversity in the hiring, retention and promotion of CPAs and in the elevation of accountants to leadership positions. Honorees for the NJCPA Diversity and Inclusion Impact Award demonstrate excellence in at least two of the following areas: influences others, serves as a role model, serves as a role model, cultivates diverse teams, innovates and takes risks, accountability, and external leadership involvement.
Carolyn D'Anna, CPA, Partner and Chief Human Resources Officer, has more than 25 years of experience in the accounting industry. She is an active leader of the Firm's professional women's program, WomenCAN: A Collaborative Advocacy Network, which addresses women's personal and career objectives with diverse learning and development opportunities. She is a member of the Firm's Diversity & Inclusion Executive Council, which acts as an advisory board responsible for researching, assessing, reviewing, and making recommendations to firm leadership about diversity initiatives and effective implementation. Carolyn has led initiatives to promote diversity and inclusion throughout the firm, including conducting periodic internal pay equity analyses by gender to ensure fair and consistent practices. She also initiated unconscious bias training both at the partner level and for the entire HR team to increase our employees' ability to make objective decisions regarding all of our talent. Carolyn is one of CohnReznick's leading spokespersons and has frequently been quoted in both regional and national publications regarding human resources and for accounting firms and professional programs. As a liaison within CohnReznick's international network, she also has presented to international accounting firms and spoken on panels on topics focused on all aspects of diversity in the workplace.
As leader of CohnReznick's Human Resources team, she is responsible for developing and executing strategy in support of the overall business plan and strategic direction of the Firm Carolyn focuses specifically on areas of talent management, training and development, compensation, budgeting, employee relations and performance management, for CohnReznick employees in 25 offices. In this role, Carolyn has successfully implemented innovative strategies to minimize disruption as CohnReznick grows and evolves. These include the development of a national comprehensive strategic recruiting plan to meet the human capital needs as well as leadership programs to develop future leaders.
Bayaan Oluyadi, CPA, is a Tax Senior in CohnReznick's Roseland office who champions diversity and inclusion both within the Firm and while beginning to grow his career outside of the office. Bayaan provides multi-state tax compliance for individuals, partnerships, corps, and scorps, as well as international reporting and transactions across all industries. He is a co-leader of the office's Junior Rainmakers program, which provides business development training to associates and senior associates. Bayaan is also extremely active within the NJCPA. He is a member of the Scholarship Committee, a board member of the NJCPA Union County Chapter, and a member of the international section of the Federal Tax Interest Group. Bayaan is a graduate of Monmouth University, and currently sits on the Board of Directors of the Monmouth University Alumni Association as the youngest member of the Board.
Atit Shah, CPA, is an Assurance Senior in CohnReznick's Roseland office. Atit provides both commercial and employee benefit plan audit services to private and SEC clients primarily in the hospitality, retail, and manufacturing/distribution industries. As a member of the Employee Benefit Plan practice, he travels across the country to train new employees and experienced staff on the latest updates and regulations. He also is part of the learning and development training team geared toward younger staff members in the New Jersey region to ensure that they have all the tools necessary to continue to succeed in their careers. Atit has also been involved in the NJCPA Mentorship Program for several years, acting as a mentor for a young man who received an NJCPA college scholarship and is currently pursuing an accounting degree at Indiana University. Atit is one of the co-leaders of the office's Junior Rainmakers program, which provides business development training to associates and senior associates and has grown into the position over the past four years. Atit fosters diversity and inclusion in the accounting profession as a member of the nominee selection and interview committee for the NJCPA Scholarship Program and through the Firm's recruiting and interview process for new staff-level hires. Atit received his M.S. Accounting at Seton Hall University, and his B.A. of Political Economy from University of California, Berkeley.
Founded in 1898, the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants is the largest professional organization serving the needs of the state's CPAs and aspiring CPAs. With a membership of more than 14,000, the NJCPA represents the majority of New Jersey CPAs in public practice, business and industry, government, and education. The organization supports its members through a variety of education, networking, leadership, and volunteer initiatives.