Cecelia Garber, now in charge of Marcum's Florida region overseeing 130 on team, talks of accounting's creative side
The cliché is that accounting is dry and boring, but Cecelia Garber would tell you otherwise.
In her line of work, she can change lives with numbers. She can influence the welfare of a child by calculating what support payments should be. She can enhance the value of someone's life-long work by knowing how to tabulate what his or her business or company is worth. She can ease the pain and suffering of the injured or victimized by helping to decide what their compensation should be. And, in some cases, she can even keep someone from going to jail. She describes her work as a cross between science and art.
As Marcum's partner-in-charge for the Florida region — a promotion she received this year — Ms. Garber manages three offices in Miami, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach. She oversees about 130 employees and leads efforts to grow Marcum's business in Florida through mergers or by taking on partners from other firms.
Based in New York City, Marcum is one of the country's largest independent public accounting and advisory services firms, overall with 1,100 employees in 23 offices.
Before Marcum, Ms. Garber was with Rachlin LLP (formerly Rachlin Cohen & Holtz LLP), one of the largest accounting firms in South Florida. In 2009, the firm merged with Marcum & Kliegman (now Marcum LLP).
Every year since 2006, Ms. Garber has been named by the South Florida Legal Guide as a Top CPA in Litigation Support. She has handled matrimonial litigation support, bankruptcy, fraud investigation, personal injury damage calculation, commercial business calculation and business valuation. She has represented individuals and businesses in tax income matters, income tax planning and compliance, personal financial statements, business consulting, and IRS criminal and civil cases.
She has been hired by lawyers to represent "high net worth" clients in divorce cases, pre- and post-nuptial agreements, diversion of assets and income, and child support calculations. She has testified as an expert witness and has experience with mediations.
She grew up in South Florida, the daughter of a deli owner who she calls "probably the greatest man I've ever known." As a young girl, her interest in accounting was first piqued by an uncle who was an accountant and "always seemed to be the most affluent side of the family."
She is married and has two daughters, one with a degree in hospitality management from Johnson and Wales University who is now studying locally for a second degree in the field, and another studying corporate communications at Boston University.
Ms. Garber discussed her career with Miami Today reporter Scott Blake at Marcum's Fort Lauderdale office.
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