CEO Compass - Summer 2020

by Ralph Albert Thomas, CPA (DC), CGMA | NJCPA CEO and Executive Director | July 15, 2020

Just six months ago, in the winter issue of CEO Compass, I extolled the importance of one-on-one meetings with members and wrote that you could expect more of those interactions in 2020. My how things have changed. 

While I’m heartened by the progress that New Jersey has made in its fight against COVID-19 and the many ways we have connected as a community, the opportunity to hit the road for a personal “conversation tour” still seems like a long way off. COVID-19 has changed almost everything about how we work and interact professionally, but the “new normal” has also proven just how resilient and responsive the NJCPA and its members can be. 

From the onset of the COVID-19 crisis and the related restrictions placed on large gatherings, we were well positioned to adapt and quickly moved spring and summer conferences and seminars to web-based learning events. Members turned out for this new online education experience in record numbers. 

To supplement the launch of Membership+, which provides members with 20 free CPE credits, and to help fill the void left by the temporary suspension of in-person chapter programming, we developed a statewide Virtual CPE Pass for 2020/21. The pass is available for purchase now with programming beginning in September. 

In the middle of this “new normal,” we also began having long-overdue discussions about racial injustice in America. As a concerned and socially conscious organization, the NJCPA vows to challenge issues of race and color and the impact they have on our community. We support an environment in which all individuals feel respected and are treated fairly. When an inclusive culture exists in an organization, true change is possible. 

We are resolved to do the work necessary to foster fundamental changes that address inequality and exclusion.   

To this end, we have formed a task force to focus on diversity and inclusion for our members and the companies and organizations where they work. Together, we must build a more just and equitable society. We welcome your thoughts on this at

Our country, our state and our members have faced a challenging few months. Sometimes it felt like the whole country was coming apart at the seams. In these trying times, I implore everyone to care for one another, treat others with the same respect and dignity that you would want, and keep lines of communications open. Talking, but more importantly, listening, is a critical step in finding a solution to any problem. 

So, stay connected and stay well.

Leave a comment