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Basics of Accounting for Lawyers 2021

Speaker(s): Brett Kumm, Christopher A. Karachale, Dan Winter, Daniel H.R. Laguardia, Duane Campbell, Jill Kennedy, Jorge A. Amador, Lawrence M. Cirelli, Mary R. Duffy, Matthew S. Kahn, Nitin Jindal, Peter A. Lennon, Rachel B. Proffitt, Terry M. Lloyd, Tim Sherman, To Be Determined
Recorded on: Jul. 20, 2021
PLI Program #: 306455

Jill Kennedy is a Managing Director at FTI Consulting and is based in Los Angeles. Ms. Kennedy has almost 15 years of experience serving on a variety of financial and accounting litigation matters. She has assisted clients in complex and sensitive issues arising from commercial litigation, securities litigation, international arbitration, intellectual property, investigations, and accounting related matters.

In connection with these matters, Ms. Kennedy has calculated complex damage models, developed discount rate and cash flow analyses, directed analyses of large volumes of documents, drafted affirmative and rebuttal expert reports, advised Counsel in witness depositions and prepared expert witnesses for deposition and trial testimony. She has experience across a variety of industries, including technology, financial services, banking, telecommunications, media, automotive finance, transportation, consumer products, chemicals, and the not-for-profit sector.

Ms. Kennedy has been designated as an expert witness for both plaintiffs and defendants in Federal and State of California courts.

Ms. Kennedy holds an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business, a Master of Accounting from the University of Southern California and a B.S. cum laude in Business Administration from Pepperdine University. She is a licensed Certified Public Accountant in the state of California, a Chartered Financial Analyst, and a Certified Fraud Examiner.

Brett Kumm is a Senior Managing Director in FTI Consulting’s Forensic & Litigation segment. Mr. Kumm has more than 20 years of experience providing consulting, accounting and audit services. He has extensive experience leading investigatory forensic engagements related to complex financial and accounting matters. Prior to joining FTI Consulting, Mr. Kumm spent 18 years providing advisory and mergers and acquisition services at the internationally recognized accounting firms of KPMG and Andersen.

Mr. Kumm is routinely requested by counsel, representing companies and board of director committees, to conduct internal investigations over financial reporting matters, including recently spearheading several high-profile investigations at both public and large private enterprises. In addition, Mr. Kumm has significant experience assisting counsel regarding M&A disputes, including large working capital and earn-out disputes. His M&A dispute experiences include participating in the role of a neutral.

Mr. Kumm has served a variety of industries including, among others, technology, transportation, manufacturing, investor-owned utilities, leasing, advertising, steel, aviation, construction, consumer products, distribution and communication industries. Mr. Kumm has substantial SEC experience and has been engaged to spearhead large scale restatement and carve-out projects, including recently assisting a large Fortune 500 company complete a $200+ million multi-year restatement to its previously reported net income.  Many engagements have included extensive investigation of underlying operational activity and the creation/reconstruction of accounting and financial records for purposes of financial and forensic analyses. 

Mr. Kumm has considerable merger and acquisition experience that includes completing buy and sell side due-diligence projects and evaluating the accounting implications of dispositions of a portion of a business and mergers and acquisitions, including carve-outs and special purpose financial statements. Mr. Kumm also has substantial experience evaluating SEC reporting matters and an in-depth knowledge of generally accepted accounting principles. Mr. Kumm has assisted clients with public debt and equity offerings, evaluation of derivative and hedging activities and complex debt and equity transactions.

Mr. Kumm has been the lead instructor on a variety of technical trainings for both external and internal audiences. This has included presenting technical trainings on accounting for revenue, leasing, business combinations, provision for income taxes, audit methodologies, SOX 404 compliance and sampling courses.

Mr. Kumm is a certified public accountant and graduated from the University of Oregon where he earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting and finance.

Christopher A. Karachale advises individuals and businesses on a range of tax planning and tax controversy matters at the federal, state, local, and international levels. He also serves as outside general counsel to a variety of companies, providing general corporate and related business guidance.

Christopher’s work on federal tax matters ranges from income tax controversies involving individuals and businesses to partnership structuring and corporate mergers and acquisitions. He regularly works with entrepreneurs and start-up companies, and is one of the leading practitioners on qualified small business stock and related section 1202 issues. He has been quoted in the New York Times, Bloomberg, and Business Insider on QSBS issues.

At the state level, in addition to income tax-related matters, Christopher counsels individuals and entities on issues involving California property and sales and use taxes. In the international context, he has extensive experience with voluntary disclosures and related planning matters, as well as in-bound and out-bound corporate structuring.

Christopher has published extensively, with articles appearing in Tax Notes, the California Business Law Practitioner, and Law360. He also is a frequent speaker on tax issues to audiences in the United States and abroad. Christopher is certified as a legal specialist in taxation law by the California Board of Legal Specialization.

Daniel Laguardia is a partner in the firm's Litigation practice and Head of the Bay Area Offices. He has represented individuals, corporations, and various financial institutions including banks, broker-dealers, hedge funds, mutual funds and private equity funds, in securities litigation, internal investigations, regulatory matters and complex commercial litigation.  He has extensive litigation experience across a broad spectrum of substantive areas, including securities and complex financial products, financial markets, mergers & acquisitions disputes, shareholder actions, distressed debt and bankruptcy issues, and commercial contracts, and he has achieved a strong record of success for clients in trial and appellate courts.

In addition to the representation of clients in all aspects of strategic litigation planning and practice, Mr. Laguardia regularly counsels clients on pre-dispute situation management, risk-control, high exposure transactions, compliance, and board governance issues.  He conducts internal investigations for clients and board committees and reviews and advises on corporate compliance provisions, governance structures, and controls.

Mr. Laguardia was a law clerk to Judge Anthony J. Scirica of the U.S. Court of Appeals, Third Circuit, from 1999 to 2000 and to Judge David G. Trager, U.S. District Court, E.D.N.Y., from 1998 to 1999.  He speaks frequently on matters of practice and ethics, has been repeatedly recognized by Benchmark Litigation, and is the former chair of the Committee on Securities Litigation of the New York City Bar.  He is also a past hiring partner for the Firm and co-chair of the Firm’s associate development committee.

Duane Campbell is a Senior Director at FTI Consulting and is based in the firm’s Los Angeles office. Duane uses his deep experience and background in forensic accounting and finance to assist his clients in dealing with complex and sensitive issues arising from internal and independent forensic accounting investigations, accounting restatements, business disputes, litigation and alternative dispute resolution involving, among other things, improper accounting, potential fraud, theft or misappropriation of funds. 

Duane’s industry experience includes financial services, insurance, media, consumer packaged goods, technology, telecommunications and the not-for-profit sector.  Duane has served as a trusted advisor in a forensic investigative capacity for a wide range of clients including the U.S Attorney’s Office, state regulatory bodies, boards of directors, executive management, and both internal and external counsel.

Duane holds an MBA from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a B.A. in economics and business administration from McDaniel College in Westminster Maryland. Duane is a CPA and also holds the CFA designation from the Chartered Financial Analyst Institute.

Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA)

Professional Affiliations
Member, Chartered Financial Analyst Institute (CFA Institute)

  • Education
    MBA, University of Maryland, Smith School of Business
  • B.A, Economics and Business Administration, McDaniel College

Lawrence M. Cirelli is a trial lawyer and a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers. His practice focuses on complex business litigation, including disputes among shareholders, owners, officers and directors of companies, fiduciary duty, contracts, professional liability, false advertising, trade secrets, non-competition agreements and unfair competition claims. He also represents clients in partnership and corporate dissolution actions. His experience as a certified public accountant brings a unique skill set and perspective to these types of matters. A significant part of his practice also involves the defense of consumer class actions. Larry has tried numerous jury and court trials, as well as arbitrations, in a range of cases spanning business torts, commercial contracts, business dissolutions, real estate, insurance, environmental, professional liability and products liability.

Mary Duffy is a Managing Director in Andersen Tax’s US National Tax office and is the co-leader of Andersen Tax’s accounting methods team. Mary also advises clients on tax policy and legislative matters and is a frequent speaker for Tax Executive Institute, BNA seminars, Andersen Tax’s Family Office Roundtables and other events. 

Mary’s experience includes advising clients on complex tax accounting methods issues. Mary has years of experience practicing before IRS National Office handling accounting method change and ruling requests.  Mary works with businesses of all sizes and structures, including managing accounting methods implementation projects, advising on issues arising in IRS examinations, and consulting on the financial statement implications of such issues under Accounting Standards Codification 740.

Immediately prior to joining Andersen, Mary served as one of two Legislation Tax Accountants with the Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) from 2011 to 2013. While with the JCT, Mary worked with key tax personnel within Congress on the development and drafting of tax legislation as well as various tax reform proposals. Mary also assisted in the review of large taxpayer refund claims submitted by the Internal Revenue Service for JCT review.

Prior to joining the JCT, Mary was part of Deloitte's National Federal Tax Solutions tax practice and specialized in tax methods of accounting. Mary began her career at Arthur Andersen in Chicago.  Mary graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a bachelor’s degree in Accounting.  Mary has a master’s degree from Northwestern University and recently completed a Master in Legal Studies in Taxation at the University of San Francisco.  She is licensed to practice as a certified public accountant. 

Matthew S. Kahn is a partner in the San Francisco office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP. He practices in the firm’s Litigation Department, and is a member of the Law Firm Defense Group Steering Committee, the Securities Litigation Group, and the Class Actions Group.

Mr. Kahn’s practice focuses on securities and derivative litigation, class action defense and law firm defense.  Recognized by Law360 as a “Legal Lion,” he has experience at all phases of trial court litigation and arbitration, including several victories at trial.  Mr. Kahn has successfully represented companies, boards of directors, law firms, and individuals throughout the country in high-stakes matters in federal and state courts, involving claims, among others, under the Securities Act of 1933 and Securities Exchange Act of 1934; breach of fiduciary duties and insider trading under Delaware, California, and New York law; legal malpractice, breach of fiduciary duty, and aiding and abetting tortious conduct; and California’s Unfair Competition Law and Consumers Legal Remedies Act.  Mr. Kahn also has significant experience in the prosecution and defense of commercial and real estate contracts and business tort actions and regularly advises clients regarding complex information law matters in both federal and state jurisdictions.

Mr. Kahn regularly handles bet-the-company litigation and precedent-setting matters.  His depositions of former Secretary of State, Labor and Treasury George Shultz and whistleblower Tyler Shultz in litigation against Theranos Inc. and its founder Elizabeth Holmes are featured in the HBO documentary The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley and ABC News’s The Dropout, an investigative podcast following the story of Elizabeth Holmes and Theranos.  He was selected as a Northern California “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers Magazine each year between 2012 and 2016 and a “Lawyer on the Fast Track” by The Recorder in 2013.

Mr. Kahn is a member of the Association of Professional Responsibility Lawyers, the American Bar Association, and the Bar Association of San Francisco.  He also serves on the Executive Committees of the San Francisco Bar Association’s Litigation and Legal Malpractice Sections and as a Settlement Conference Officer for the San Francisco County Superior Court.  In the latter role, Mr. Kahn presides over mandatory settlement conferences in civil cases.

Mr. Kahn clerked for the Honorable Mary L. Cooper, United States District Judge for the District of New Jersey, from 2003 to 2004.  Mr. Kahn received his law degree, with distinction, from Stanford Law School in 2003.  He received his B.A. in political science with honors, from Swarthmore College in 1999, where he was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and was captain of the varsity wrestling team.

Mr. Kahn is an active provider of pro bono legal services, and he serves on Gibson Dunn’s Pro Bono Committee.  Mr. Kahn also serves on the Leadership Council of Tipping Point Community, which finds, funds and partners with the most promising direct-service non-profits working to educate, employ, house and support those in need in the San Francisco Bay Area.

Rachel B. Proffitt practices corporate and securities law and represents public and private clients, as well as venture capital and investment banking firms and other institutional investors, across a broad range of industries. Her practice focuses on general corporate and complex transactional matters, including venture capital transactions, public and private securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions and other strategic transactions, and public-company disclosure and corporate governance.

Prior to joining Cooley, Rachel was a partner at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati.


  • Recognized in the Start-Ups & Emerging Companies category of the 2017 edition of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, with commentators describing her as "phenomenal," "thorough" and "incredibly fast to respond," and observers noting that "she does well at balancing risk"
  • Recognized by the Daily Journal as one of the Top 100 Women Lawyers in California for 2015


  • University of California, Hastings College of the Law JD
  • Member, Hastings International and Comparative Law Review
  • Member, Hastings Security Law Society
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • BA, English, cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, University Honors Program

Admissions & Credentials

  • California

Tim Sherman has nearly twenty years of experience applying accounting, financial, and economic principles in various dispute and non-dispute contexts.  He has performed valuations, testified as an expert witness, calculated damages, and analyzed complex accounting issues in a variety of industries, including entertainment, technology, financial services, and aerospace.   He has managed large teams for litigation and investigation related projects.  Mr. Sherman’s work has involved writing expert reports pursuant to FRCP Rule 26, preparing complex damage schedules, assisting with discovery (e.g., document requests and depositions), and preparing for trial.  Mr. Sherman’s experience includes:

  • Investigating misstatements in publicly filed financial statements and determining the impact of misstatements on previously issued financial statements.
  • Calculating damages and identifying and interpreting accounting guidance related to inventory valuation in a dispute regarding the price paid in a business acquisition.
  • Evaluating auditor compliance with generally accepted auditing standards related to the recognition of fictitious revenues and cash balances.
  • Calculating lost profits and reasonable royalties in multiple patent infringement disputes.


  • B.A., Pomona College
  • M.B.A., the Stern School of Business at New York University

Professional Designations

  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA) - California
  • Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) - AICPA

With over 15 years of experience in public accounting, Dan Winter has served a variety of technology industries including software, SaaS, internet media, networking equipment, intellectual property, semiconductor and life sciences. Dan has extensive experience with equity and debt financing, including public offerings, business combinations, revenue recognition and SEC reporting and compliance. Dan spearheads the BPM’s Technology Industry Group and is the leader of the Assurance Technical Committee.

Dan holds an active CPA license in California.

Jorge A. Amador is a Director at Axia Advisors, LLC, a San Francisco based litigation consulting firm.  Jorge has extensive experience providing litigation support as both a testifying expert and consultant in matters related to accounting malpractice, mergers and acquisitions, white-collar crime, and business disputes involving valuation issues and piercing of the corporate veil.  Previously he served as the Director of Forensic Accounting of one of the nation’s largest securities litigation firms, where he led a group of accounting professionals that investigated private securities lawsuits involving complex financial issues.  He has participated in the litigation of highly complex accounting scandals involving some of America's largest corporations including Enron, Tyco, Lehman Brothers, Countrywide, and Waste Management.

Previously, Jorge was a practicing CPA where he directed audits of public companies and closely-held businesses, ranging from financial services to construction companies. 

Jorge regularly lectures on a variety of accounting and legal topics.  He has also taught both undergraduate and graduate level courses in Financial Accounting, Financial Statement Analysis, Forensic Accounting, and Business Law. 

He is currently a member of the California State Bar and is admitted in the Northern District of California, and is a current member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).  He graduated with a B.S. in Business Administration (Accounting) from Norwich University, in Northfield, Vermont and earned his J.D. from Concord School of Law in Los Angeles, California.  He is also fluent in Spanish.

Jorge can be reached at

Nitin Jindal is Assistant General Counsel at Deloitte and was elected to the Board in March 2018 after serving on the Finance Committee.  Prior to joining Deloitte, Nitin was Corporate Counsel at Oracle in their Litigation Group. Prior to that he worked at the San Francisco office of Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP, where his practice focused on antitrust and intellectual property litigation.  Nitin received his J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and his B.A. in Legal Studies from the University of California, Berkeley.  He is also a Certified Public Accountant (inactive).

Peter A. Lennon's career has been devoted to Litigation, Compliance, Financial Regulation, Taxation, Governance, Conduct Risk, Operational Risk and related matters for many years. In addition to being a US Qualified Lawyer and a Professor of Economics, he is also a US Qualified Accountant with extensive Big 4 auditing experience and has an MBA in Economics/Finance. He has been successfully employed for many years as an Attorney, Forensic Accountant, Investigator and Litigation Consultant to law firms and regulators in the US and Europe handling matters involving complex financial and regulatory issues, including many high-profile cases.

He can be reached at:

Terry Lloyd, CPA, CFA is a financial analyst with a practice specializing in finance and accounting matters in tax, dispute, and transaction settings.  He is also an arbitrator for the AAA, FINRA, and under court appointment.  He is a CPA and Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and has published widely, including portions of a law school text on accounting and has guest lectured for both law schools and graduate business schools.  Mr. Lloyd has been qualified as an expert on valuation, finance, accounting, and damages in courts, arbitration forums, and the International Court of Arbitration.  He once deposed another CPA. 

Mr. Lloyd’s work has taken him to Europe, the Caribbean, and Latin America.  His clients include law and accounting firms, private equity investors, the SEC, and the IRS.

Mr. Lloyd holds a BA in accounting (magna cum laude) and an MBA in finance.  He is a shareholder in the consultancy Finance Scholars Group and was previously a partner with BDO Seidman and a managing director with the Huron Consulting Group.