The Profession's Only Conference on Practice Management

November 14 & 15, 2023 • Chicago, IL

The Modern Accounting Firm Navigating the Culture Shift

As leaders, one of the biggest impacts in a post-pandemic world is how culture is shaping the way we do business, go to market, and attract and retain great talent. Strategic decisions made in the near-term will be the difference between thriving and surviving in the long-term.

Enter Winning Ways — a practice management symposium conceived of by industry influencers Koltin Consulting (Allan Koltin) and Winding River Consulting (Gary Shamis and David Toth), designed specifically to address a new contemporary topic impacting the profession every year.


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What Previous Attendees Have To Say Testimonials

Winning Ways '22 was a unique conference for high-caliber accounting firm owners and execs to come together and discuss some of the industry's biggest problems. If you want to be in the room with people who are making it happen, I highly recommend attending

- Brandon Hall, Managing Partner at Hall CPA PLLC

I thought the Winning Ways was a great conference to attend and well worth the time and money. Many of the thought leaders of the profession were there and it provided a great opportunity to network with many of them. The content of the conference was very timely as well as it was focused on resource management and outsourcing solutions etc. which are some of the biggest issues in the profession at this time.

- Jeff Call, Managing Partner at Bennett Thrasher

Keynote Richard Kopelman

Inside the firm, I work with Aprio’s board and leadership teams to ensure we are continuously advancing our people, diverse culture, capabilities, clients and communities. I look forward to speaking about how we integrate culture during M&A activities. 


Reasons to attend this year's conference Establish a Firm Culture That Sets People Up for Success

If you are a progressive, forward-thinking firm, you are most likely putting every effort into creating a magnetic culture. Accounting talent is at such a premium today that firms need a culture that clearly demonstrates collaboration, innovation, and inclusion to attract and retain the strongest, best talent in the profession.

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Fostering a sense of loyalty and commitment leads to increased productivity and job satisfaction, and creates a positive, nurturing environment. Winning Ways 2023 will help you to refine your culture. With a clear set of values and a sense of purpose, employees can easily connect with and feel proud to be a part of your firm. Learn from experts who can change yours for the better!

As accounting professionals, we understand the importance of staying up-to-date with the latest industry trends and practices. Networking and collaboration with peers is an excellent way to expand our knowledge and skill sets. Winning Ways brings together leaders from the top accounting firms in the country. You'll have the opportunity to connect with like-minded professionals in the field and engage in meaningful discussions about the opportunities creating a great culture provides to your firm. 

Attendance is capped at 100 leaders providing you the chance to share your experiences, learn from others, and gain new perspectives on creating culture best practices. Join us for an intimate reception November 14th for an evening of networking, discussion and libations!

Industry insights reveal that creating a healthy work culture in accounting firms can increase productivity, job satisfaction, and employee retention. With the rise of remote work and a more diverse workforce, firms need to be intentional about promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion to foster a welcoming and inclusive culture.

Additionally, emphasizing open communication, encouraging professional development opportunities, 

and recognizing employee achievements are essential building blocks in creating a thriving and sustainable culture in the accounting profession. 

Join us at Winning Ways to explore with Allan Koltin, Gary Shamis and Richard Kopelman how to build a positive culture in the accounting industry and gain valuable insights from these industry experts.

Speakers & Panelists

Allan Koltin
Allan Koltin
CEO, Koltin Consulting

Allan Koltin is a seasoned business advisor and consultant with over 30 years of experience in the accounting and consulting industries. As CEO of the Koltin Consulting Group, he leads a team of professionals who provide strategic guidance and support to accounting firms and their leaders.

Throughout his career, Allan has worked with hundreds of accounting firms, ranging from small local firms to large international organizations. He has helped these firms navigate complex business challenges, develop growth strategies, and improve operational efficiency.

An esteemed thought leader in the industry, Allan is a frequent speaker at industry events and has authored numerous articles and publications on topics related to accounting firm management and leadership. He is passionate about helping firms grow and succeed, and his insights and expertise have proven invaluable to countless clients throughout his career.

Prior to founding the Koltin Consulting Group, Allan was the CEO of PDI Global, a leading provider of consulting and training services to accounting firms. He also spent several years as a Partner with Deloitte, providing strategic consulting services to clients in a variety of industries.

Allan holds a Bachelor's degree in Accounting from the University of Illinois and is a licensed Certified Public Accountant. He is also a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Illinois CPA Society.

With his extensive knowledge and experience, Allan has earned a reputation as a trusted advisor and mentor to accounting firm leaders across the country. He works closely with his clients to understand their unique challenges and goals, and develops customized solutions that drive growth and success.

Gary Shamis
Gary Shamis
CEO, Winding River Consulting

Gary Shamis is a highly experienced and accomplished business advisor, entrepreneur, and Certified Public Accountant with over 40 years of experience in the accounting and consulting industries. As the Managing Director of Winding River Consulting, Gary provides strategic guidance and support to accounting firms, helping them navigate the complex challenges of the modern business landscape.

Throughout his career, Gary has worked with hundreds of accounting firms across the United States, ranging from small local practices to large international organizations. He has a deep understanding of the challenges facing the industry, and has helped countless firms overcome those challenges and achieve long-term success.

Gary is a recognized thought leader in the industry and a frequent speaker at industry events. He has authored numerous articles and publications on topics related to accounting firm management, leadership, and growth. He is passionate about helping accounting firms achieve their full potential and has dedicated his career to this mission.

Prior to founding Winding River Consulting, Gary was a co-founder of SS&G, a top 50 accounting and consulting firm, where he served as Managing Partner for over 30 years. Under his leadership, the firm grew from a small local practice to a regional powerhouse with multiple offices and a diverse portfolio of clients.

Gary is a licensed Certified Public Accountant and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Ohio Society of Certified Public Accountants. He holds a Bachelor's degree in Accounting from the University of Akron.

With his extensive knowledge, experience, and passion for the industry, Gary has earned a reputation as a trusted advisor and mentor to accounting firm leaders across the country. He works closely with his clients to develop customized strategies that drive growth and profitability, and he is committed to helping accounting firms thrive in the face of the challenges and opportunities of the modern business world.

David Toth
David Toth
CGO, Winding River Consulting

David Toth built his marketing expertise around a strong digital comprehension. Understanding the importance of data, he reasoned, should guide each step of the process, using informed decision making to adapt when and where necessary. Armed with the evidence, David challenges the status quo to drive results.

He is a strategic-thinker and believes the path to successful outcomes includes integrating technology with tried-and-true practices. As David sees it, when it comes to digital transformation there will always be new dots to connect. The challenge is having the discipline to make the connections that close the gap between marketing dollars and sales revenue.

David has served as an outsourced CMO, agency executive, and change agent for organizations in sectors from fast-growing start-ups to well established Fortune 500 companies. He has a knack for building meaningful relationships. David has found that while each business and industry is unique, the foundation to success is always the same — know your audience.

Bill Kaiser
Bill Kaiser
VP, CultureWise

Prior to joining HPC, Bill worked for 20+ years in the employee benefits industry. 13 years at RSI (with HPC Founder & CEO, David Friedman) followed by 7 years with Arthur J. Gallagher & Co. (AJG). Bill started in direct selling and later moved into leadership positions as Area President of Gallagher’s Mt. Laurel, NJ office and then MidAtlantic Region VP of Sales & Marketing.

Having lived and breathed the Fundamentals at RSI and championing the Gallagher Way at AJG, Bill can speak experientially to the impact a high performing culture delivers. Bill has worked with nearly 100 organizations helping them to build high-performing cultures.

Richard Kopelman
Richard Kopelman
Managing Partner, Aprio

For almost three decades, I've helped to grow and manage Aprio, a CPA-led advisory firm. Find out more about our work by contacting me directly on here or

As well as leading the organization, I help us to innovate service delivery and improve the use of technology in the profession. I am always looking for the next cool opportunity that will move our partners and clients up a level. As a business, we call it being Passionate for What's Next®.

I'm honored to have been awarded most influential and most admired CEO in Atlanta, and Aprio has been awarded best place to work in Atlanta for the last three years.

Josh Beck
Josh Beck
CEO, MarksNelson

Prior to assuming the role of Managing Partner in 2020, Josh Beck served as a Partner in MarksNelson’s advisory services area, member of the firm’s Executive Committee, and leader of the Real Estate industry niche. He joined MarksNelson as leader of the Location Strategies practice after merging-in the St. Louis-based corporate site selection and economic development consulting firm he founded.

In addition to his responsibilities as Managing Partner, Josh regularly provides site selection, credits and incentives, and economic development counsel to companies and communities of all sizes. His experience, holding key positions for economic development organizations at both the state and local level, along with private-sector sales and marketing, provides Josh with the unique experience to help his clients shape and implement plans for growth.

Jessica Freiburg
Jessica Freiburg
Managing Partner, Sassetti, LLC
Jessica is the Managing Partner at Sassetti LLC, and brings nearly 20 years of experience to the firm. She provides tax, audit, advisory, and accounting services to a diversified client base including publicly-traded and privately-held businesses, non-profit organizations, employee benefit plans sponsored by those entities, and family offices. In each client relationship, Jessica takes the time to understand every client’s goal and designs uniquely tailored strategies to ensure their organization thrives. She is a former winner of the Chicago Sky #RedefinePossible Women’s Leadership Award and the 2017 Influential Women in Business Award from The Daily Herald.
Arianna Ehmer
Arianna Ehmer
C.O.O. - Accounting & Tax
Jennifer Warawa
Jennifer Warawa
President, North America

Venue Lowes Hotel Chicago O’Hare

Nov. 14 – 15

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General Questions?

If you have a question about attending, sponsoring, speaking, or another way to get involved, please let us know.

Secure your Seat

Keep in mind that this event is limited to 100 attendees, so make sure you reserve your spot!