November/December 2020

President's Message

The Diversity & Inclusion Group updates are as follows:

    • The 2020 FUSION Event was postponed until 2021.  More details to follow, once available next year.

    • Remember to register the FEI Icons:  Women of Note Virtual Conference on December 3rd.  This complimentary webinar for members offers 3 CPE credits and features an empowering afternoon with dynamic and diverse female icons in finance.

    • The recommended reading selection is Dare to Lead by Brene Brown. This book was recommended by our members as a book club selection and a Spring 2021 book club is being planned.

    • FY20-21 virtual event planning is underway as we reconfigure the outlook and offerings based on survey results.

    Join your colleagues virtually on Thursday, 12/10, for a candid, informative sharing of information and discussion on topics important to you and your company!

    Topics already on the agenda are as follows: 

    • PPP loan forgiveness updates
    • 401K administrative and investment fees
    • Healthcare renewals
    • Wage increases for 2021
    • 2021 budgeting process

    Fall Peer Group Meeting Information
    Thursday, December 10, 2020
    2:00 - 4:30 PM
    Zoom Meeting

    Click here
    to register in Constant Contact! Zoom join details will be sent in a separate, confirmation message.

    This virtual event is eligible for 3 CPE credits in the field of management services to those who attend the entire meeting and complete the polling questions.

    2020-2021 Program Schedule Updates

    As we approach the end of 2020, we would like to thank the six members listed in the right-hand column for their efforts in recruiting six new members since September. Last month, we held a Chapter Choice Promotion that was in effect from 10/13/20 – 10/27/20, and were able to recruit four new members as a result.

    Membership recruitment and retention has been more challenging this fiscal year due to the ongoing effects of the COVID pandemic. However, we are both pleased and proud of our virtual and hybrid offerings to date, and want to extend our gratitude to both our strategic partners and members for their support and commitment to the chapter, especially this year.

    Click here to read the entire membership update.

    There have been a few changes to our program schedules based on the pandemic and additional session updates. As a reminder, separate program schedules have been developed for our virtual professional development sessions, and hybrid keynote meetings. Below are links to the current program schedules (as of 11/24/20):

    2020-2021 Keynote Program Schedule
    2020-2021 Professional Development Program Schedule

    We will continue to make updates, as necessary, to both program schedules. These documents will always be posted on the chapter's home page under the Quick Links Section (middle right of page).

    Special Features

    Baker Tilly

    Learn first-hand from leaders across industries about their auditing experience in a remote environment, what to expect, and tips for an effective virtual audit. Join Baker Tilly’s free, virtual event on Dec. 8, 12 noon – 1 pm CT. Register here!

    Auditing in a remote environment: lessons learned and looking forward

    The webinar will feature a panel discussion with leaders across industries:

    • Chris Kenney, Chief Accounting Officer, Hallmark Financial Services (Texas) Financial Services
    • Jeff Lev, CFO/COO, Jewish Family Service (Michigan) Not-for-profit
    • Heather Acker, CFO, Gentex Corporation (Pennsylvania) M&D

    Also included is a free e-book from Baker Tilly: The ERP refresh – a guide to replacing the key software to power your business. This e-book is designed to help a company determine if it is time to replace their enterprise resource planning system and give them a broad view of the commitment needed in people, time and resources for a successful ERP evaluation and choice of vendor. With this knowledge, your organization can make an informed choice whether to tackle an ERP replacement on your own or with the help of outside experts.

    CIBC Cleary Gull

    Founded in 1987, Cleary Gull Inc. is a nationally recognized, employee-owned boutique investment banking firm with a global reach. We advise private equity funds, entrepreneurs, and small publicly traded companies on mergers and acquisitions, private debt and equity financings and recapitalizations and other transactions. Our investment banking team has completed hundreds of middle market transactions delivering more than $8 billion in value. 

    With an average of more than 20 years of deal experience, our senior investment bankers bring knowledge, integrity and a determination to deliver great outcomes for our clients. The Market Monitor is published quarterly. 
    Click here to read the 2020 3rd Quarter Market Monitor.


    CLA has several upcoming webinars/livestreams during the month of December! You're invited to attend their complimentary, Post-Election Tax and Economic Update Webinar on 12/3/20. Click on the link below for more details, and to register for the webinar:

    Also available is CLA's Tax Strategies Article – After the Elections, Consider Your Investment and Tax Playbook:

    Francis Investment Counsel

    Expert’s Guide for Understanding and Managing your Retirement Plan Fees

    With allegations of unreasonable fees dominating the headlines of ERISA litigation, plan sponsors need to protect themselves – but how?

    Our three-part Guide to Retirement Plan Fees details what you need to know to prudently oversee and monitor your plan’s costs.

    Access the complete guide here.

    What’s on your mind?

    If you have a question about your retirement plan or its oversight process, contact Joseph Topp via phone (262-781-8950) or email (

    von Briesen

    IRS Announcement Regarding Effect of Entity Payment of Tax on SALT Deduction Limitation
    By Curtis C. Walther

    The 2017 federal tax reform legislation included a limitation on the individual itemized deduction for state and local taxes (“SALT”). The limit is $10,000 per joint return and $5,000 per return for married taxpayers that file separately. Some high individual tax states attempted to help their taxpayers blunt the effect of this new limitation by allowing them to make charitable contributions to the state in exchange for a corresponding credit against their individual state taxes. The expectation was that individuals doing so would be able to deduct the full charitable contribution on their federal income tax returns, and thereby reduce the effect of the SALT deduction limitation.

    The IRS and Treasury responded, however, by issuing regulations limiting the deduction for such charitable contributions. The IRS viewed the changes made by those states as inappropriate attempts to “circumvent” the 2017 SALT deduction limitation. Wisconsin also subsequently passed legislation motivated in large part by the federal SALT limitation. It does not apply to all taxpayers. Instead, it provides a potential means for owners of Wisconsin entities taxed as S corporations (“tax-option corporations” in Wisconsin terminology) or as partnerships (which would include most multi-member LLCs) to reduce the adverse effect of the federal SALT deduction limitation.

    Click here to read the entire article.

    Copyright © 2022 FEI of Eastern Wisconsin. All rights reserved.
    Contact email: Michelle Weiss