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Reading Public Company Financials - What You Need to Know 2013

Speaker(s): Bruce M. Gorman, Sally L. Hoffman, Thomas Butler
Recorded on: Jan. 30, 2013
PLI Program #: 45745

Bruce M. Gorman, an audit partner, has been with Berdon LLP for more than 25 years. Advising on accounting and auditing issues, he works closely with clients across a broad range of industries — including real estate, law, architecture & engineering, manufacturing, website developers, and service businesses — helping them strengthen their bottom lines and prepare for the future.  In addition to consulting in accounting areas, Mr. Gorman provides litigation support for attorneys and clients, specializing in forensic accounting, royalty investigations, and malpractice issues.

 He is also involved in all aspects of financial reporting and provides expert witness testimony on accounting issues. Mr. Gorman’s broad-based expertise also spans:

  • performing due diligence and structuring acquisitions to enhance buyer tax benefits
  • assisting in partner buyouts and agreements
  • reviewing cash flows, analyzing operational issues, and preparing financial projections to implement effective business plans
  • performing operational audits to increase efficiency and institute more effective controls
  • developing succession plans to help ensure family/owner-managed business continuity
  • performing royalty investigations, including reviewing and analyzing contracts and royalty statements for compliance
  • developing financial and accounting analyses of bankrupt companies for restructuring efforts
  • advising clients in negotiating credit arrangements
  • performing due diligence relating to accounting issues and settlement provisions


  • American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
  • New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants

Mr. Gorman has served on the Audit Sampling and Analytical Techniques Committee as well as the Hospitality Committee of the New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants.

Mr. Gorman graduated from New York University with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting.  In 1980, he obtained his license as a Certified Public Accountant in the State of New York. 

Sally L. Hoffman is a Berdon LLP partner and Co-Director of the Litigation, Valuation, & Dispute Resolution Group with more than 30 years of experience. She is expert at litigation consulting, with in-depth expertise in investigations of alleged fraudulent financial reporting, consulting in the application of generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) and auditing standards (GAAS), damage analyses, fraud investigations, contract and business disputes, and forensic accounting.

Ms. Hoffman is a nationally recognized authority on accounting and auditing standards, professional ethics, and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reporting requirements. She has been active in the profession’s standard-setting process and has served on all three senior technical committees of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA): the Auditing Standards Board; the Accounting Standards Executive Committee; and the Professional Ethics Executive Committee. She also served on the Professional Standards and Practices Committee of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. As a member of the Auditing Standards Board’s Fraud Task Force, she helped draft the Statement of Auditing Standards No. 99, Consideration of Fraud in a Financial Statement Audit and served on the AICPA Fraud Task Force.

Ms. Hoffman has extensive experience consulting on and rendering opinions in matters regarding adhering to GAAP and GAAS. Working on both the plaintiff and defense side, she has been retained by counsel defending CPAs and those alleging violations of professional standards. In securities matters, she has been retained as an expert by the SEC as well as by defendants appearing before the commission. She has served as an expert for the U.S. Attorney’s Office and for counsel defending investigations brought by that office. Ms. Hoffman also applies her deep GAAP and GAAS knowledge to post-acquisition disputes, matters involving disagreements between joint venture partners as well as between shareholders in privately held businesses, contract disputes, and internal investigations. She has performed numerous forensic accounting assignments and fraud investigations of all types.

In the damages arena, Ms. Hoffman is experienced in performing damage analyses and critiquing an opponent’s calculation in myriad circumstances across a diverse breadth of industries. Her practice has included business interruption lost profits, loss from improper termination of a franchise, breach of contract, and the financial impact of the failure of professionals or consultants to fulfill their obligations, to name a few.

Ms. Hoffman has testified in federal and state courts, arbitration proceedings, and SEC administrative hearings. Both federal and state judges have cited her testimony: In a securities matter in federal court, Ms. Hoffman was regarded as "well qualified and fully credible" ... in denying a motion to vacate a jury verdict in another securities matter, the judge concluded he could not "sustain [defense] arguments that Hoffman’s testimony was wanting in either weight or credibility" ... and in a damages matter in NJ state court, the court found her to be "a very credible and conservative witness."


2002-Present: Berdon LLP: Co-Director, Litigation and Dispute Resolution Group
1997-2002: Perelson Weiner LLP: Partner in Charge, Litigation Services and member of Technical Standards Group
1990-1997: Richard A. Eisner & Company, LLP: Partner in Charge, Litigation Services Department and member of Technical Standards Group
1980-1990: KPMG Peat Marwick and predecessor Main Hurdman 


  •  Masters of Business Administration, Pace University, 1980.
  •  Bachelor of Arts, University of Toronto, 1964
  •  Certified Fraud Examiner, Association of Certified Fraud Examiners
  •  Certified in Financial Forensics, AICPA
  •  Licensed as a CPA in New York and New Jersey
  •  Elijah Watt Sells Award - Gold Medal recipient for the highest score in the United States on May 1980 CPA examination, presented by the AICPA
  •  Public Accountants Award, NYSSCPA

Tax principal Thomas Butler has more than 30 years of combined experience in public accounting and the corporate sector. Mr. Butler advises corporations and partnerships on the tax aspects of transactions, among them mergers and acquisitions; joint ventures; consolidations; reorganizations; and dispositions of real estate. He works with businesses across numerous sectors — manufacturing and distribution, real estate, financial services, and technology to name a few. Prior to joining Berdon he held leadership positions in the tax practice of a national CPA firm.

His expertise extends to:

  • transactional tax planning — identifying the optimum treatment from a business and tax perspective
  • tax strategies to overcome or eliminate roadblocks to a successful transaction
  • isolating and assisting in realizing tax savings opportunities
  • S corp and C corp elections — advising on the advantages and disadvantages for the specific business
  • navigating the complexities of ASC 740
  • representing clients in conflicts with federal and state taxing authorities
  • collaborating with client legal counsel in reviewing tax due diligence


  • American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
  • New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants

Mr. Butler is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Accounting & Taxation at the Frank G. Zarb Graduate School of Business at Hofstra University. He is a coauthor of a two-part article on Subchapter C for The CPA Journal.

Thomas Butler holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from St. John Fisher College and a Juris Doctor degree from Albany Law School of Union University. He earned an APC in Accounting from New York University Stern Graduate School of Business. Mr. Butler is licensed as a CPA and attorney in New York State.