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Paula Mann

Paula Mann

Associate Dean of the School of Business, Assistant Professor of Accounting
Borick Business Building 221


Master of Taxation, University of Denver, Sturm College of Law, 2017
BBA, University of Pennsylvania, The Wharton School, 1999


How did you discover Western?

My father-in-law was a professor at the university from 1974 through 2000 and my husband is a graduate of the Western math program.

What are some of the highlights of your career?

I have over 20 years of experience in accounting, tax and business consulting. I began my career in public accounting at Deloitte, before working at various diverse financial services firms, including New York Life, Marsh & McLennan, hedge fund DE Shaw and Simon Equity Partners. Since moving to Gunnison in 2016, I’ve been running a small tax and consulting practice.

What most excites you about your field?

Becoming an accountant may not initially seem like the most thrilling career path, but there are many reasons to consider a career as CPA:

  • Every Industry Needs Accountants: Every business needs financial expertise regardless of its size or industry. As an accountant, you can work in virtually any sector you’re interested in, from entertainment and sports to technology and healthcare.
  • Opportunity for Continuous Learning: The world of finance and business is always changing. As such, accountants are in a position where they must keep learning new laws, technologies, and strategies. This can make the job continuously interesting and intellectually stimulating.
  • Problem-Solving: Every organization faces financial challenges. As an accountant, you can play a key role in overcoming these obstacles. Your analytical skills can help drive strategic decision-making and improve the company’s bottom line, making your job impactful and rewarding.
  • Job Security: There’s always a demand for skilled accountants, especially in times of economic uncertainty when businesses need help managing their finances. This offers a level of job security that many other professions don’t provide.
  • Financial Mastery: As an accountant, you’ll have a deep understanding of financial principles, taxes, budgeting, and more. This knowledge can be used to your advantage in your personal life, helping you make wise investment decisions and manage your own finances effectively.
  • Opportunities for Advancement: Accountants often have clear career paths, with opportunities to become finance managers, CFOs, or even CEOs. Some accountants also choose to start their own businesses, offering services to other companies or individuals.
  • Networking: Working as an accountant, especially in public accounting, often involves dealing with different clients from various sectors. This can significantly expand your professional network, which can open doors to future opportunities.
  • Work Flexibility: Many accounting roles allow for flexible working conditions. You could work part-time, full-time, or even be self-employed. With the rise of remote work, many accountants can work from anywhere they want.
  • The Satisfaction of Helping Others: Whether it’s helping a small business stay afloat, assisting a non-profit in maximizing their resources, or helping individuals navigate their taxes, there’s a lot of satisfaction that can come from using your skills to help others.

What is your favorite thing about the Gunnison Valley?

The unspoiled wilderness, dark skies, and a strong sense of community and community spirit.

Courses Taught

  • Financial Accounting
  • Intermediate Accounting
  • Advanced Accounting
  • Auditing
  • Taxation
  • Managerial Accounting
  • Sustainability Accounting
  • Professional Ethics

External Professional Affiliations

  • Colorado Board of Accountancy
  • Community Foundation of the Gunnison Valley
  • Small Business Development Center

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