University of Texas at Austin
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Department News

McCombs School of Business McCombs School of Business

Welcome to Our Newest Faculty Member, Urooj Khan!

Urooj Khan

The Department of Accounting would like to welcome our newest faculty member, Urooj Kahn! Learn more about Urooj:

  • SPRING 2021 CLASSES: Financial Statement Analysis
  • PRIOR ACADEMIC POSITIONS: Associate Professor at Columbia Business School
  • RESEARCH INTERESTS: Capital markets and disclosure with a special interest in financial institutions
  • FAVORITE PUBLICATION YOU'VE WRITTEN: “Real activity forecasts using loan portfolio information," Journal of Accounting Research (2016). We were the first to show that banks' expectations of losses on loans they have extended can be used to forecast recessions and economic activity of U.S. states.
  • EDUCATION: PhD, University of Washington; MBA, University of Washington; MS, Syracuse University; BC, University of Delhi
  • INTERESTING FACT: I am a big fan of Test cricket. A Test cricket match can last up to five days; if I had the time, I would watch every ball bowled!
  • Spring 2021 BBA Faculty Honor Roll

    Spring 2021 BBA Honor Roll

    Congratulations to the following members of the Department of Accounting who were elected to the Spring 2021 BBA Faculty Honor Roll. The recipients were chosen by the students of the Undergraduate Business Council (UBC) based on excellent student ratings across several dimensions of the Fall 2020 Course Instructor Survey. The Department winners are:

  • Megan Allen
  • Matt Kubic
  • Steve Smith
  • Brady Williams
  • Well done Megan, Matt, Steve, and Brady!

    AICPA Recognizes 2019 Elijah Watt Sells Award Winners

    Sells Award Winners 2019

    The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) recently named the 133 recipients of the 2019 Elijah Watt Sells Award, and Texas McCombs is proud to announce that the MPA program has twelve winners:

  • Daniel Chang (iMPA '19) who is employed with PwC in Dallas, Texas
  • Bryan Davis (tMPA '16) who employed with Verizon Communications Inc. in Lake Mary, Florida
  • James Hall (ECON-MPA '19) who is employed with Cherry Bekaert in Austin, Texas
  • Kara Killingsworth (iMPA '19) who is employed with Protiviti in Dallas, Texas
  • Jerry Lam (iMPA '19) who is employed with Deloitte in Dallas, Texas
  • Adam Landefeld (iMPA '19) who is employed with KPMG in Dallas, Texas
  • Collyn Robison (iMPA '19) who is employed with KPMG in Dallas, Texas
  • Travis Sakos (iMPA '18) who is employed with Deloitte Tax LLP in Houston, Texas
  • Kyle Schoen (iMPA '19) who is employed with EY in Austin, Texas
  • Adam Schor (iMPA '19) who is employed with PwC in Dallas, Texas
  • Wei-Ning Tsai (tMPA '19) who is employed with PwC in Taipei, Taiwan
  • Alec Weissman (iMPA '19) who is employed with EY in Dallas, Texas
  • This award recognizes those who scored a cumulative average score above 95.50 across all four sections of the CPA exam, passed all four sections of the exam on their first attempt, and completed their testing in 2019. Over 75,000 individuals sat for the CPA exam in 2019.

    83% of Texas McCombs students who took the CPA exam in 2019 passed all four sections; this compares to a 54% pass rate among all over Texas colleges and universities.

    Congratulations to Daniel, Bryan, James, Kara, Jerry, Adam, Collyn, Travis, Kyle, Adam, Wei-Ning, and Alec, as well as the other 121 winners --- it's an tremendous accomplishment to receive this award!

    See the full list of winners here.

    The Elijah Watt Sells Award was established in 1923 to honor one of the country's first CPAs, Elijah Watt Sells. He was a founding partner of Haskins & Sells (a predecessor to Deloitte) and one of the first practicing CPAs in New York. He also served on the AICPA governing council and helped turn the AICPA into what it is today.

    Lillian Mills Named Dean of the McCombs School of Business

    Lil Mills

    The Department of Accounting is thrilled to announce that Lillian Mills has been named the next permanent dean of the McCombs School of Business. She has served in this role as interim dean since April 2020, and after a competitive national search, Dean Mills’ experience and commitment to our communities set her apart.

    It is a strong testament to the culture of the college to have such a talented and able leader who stepped up to serve during an unprecedented year.

    Dean Mills is the first woman permanent dean at the McCombs School of Business, which will celebrate its 100-year anniversary in 2022.

    Join us in congratulating Dean Lil Mills!

    McCombs Research and Teaching Awards

    Lisa Brian Brian Award Winners

    The Department of Accounting nominated a strong slate of candidates for the McCombs Research and Teaching Awards, and we are proud to announce we brought home four awards!

    Professor Lisa Koonce won the Career Award for Outstanding Research Contributions. Associate Professor Brian White received the Research Excellence Award for Associate Professors. Distinguished Senior Lecturer Brian Lendecky won two awards! He won the Fawn and Vijay Mahajan Teaching Excellence Award for Executive Education and the Joe D. Beasley Award.

    Congratulations Lisa, Brian, and Brian!

    Michael Clement Named a Texas Ten Award Recipient

    Michael Clement

    Each year, UT alumni vote for their favorite professors, and ten are chosen and featured in Alcalde Magazine. Department of Accounting Chair Michael Clement made the list this year.

  • Michael Clement
  • KPMG Centennial Professor and Chair, Department of Accounting | Years at UT: 24
  • Side Gig: Clement has been UT’s Faculty Athletics Representative since 2013 and serves as an advocate for student-athletes for the Big 12 and NCAA.

    “My grandfather passed away while I was in his class,” Michael Clement’s nominator wrote. “His funeral was on September 11, 2001. I emailed all my professors to tell them that I would be out. He is the only person who responded. He told me how close he had been to his own grandfather and to take care of my family. That human touch meant so much to me.”

    “How does that make you feel?” I ask him over the phone. Clement composes himself and then responds quietly: “I don’t remember that” he says, “but I do believe I said it. It’s consistent with the way I think.”

    His father, his most important role model, was also a professor of business, but for years Clement resisted academia, working at a public accounting firm and a big bank in New York City. When he met people in the industry who had been taught by his father, they always wanted to do nice things for him. “Because of what he had done for them,” he says. One day, he realized no one he knew was as fulfilled as his dad.

    Clement says the core purpose of the university — to transform lives for the benefit of society — is what has kept him in Austin so long and made it easy to turn down offers from private schools. And his job at UT allows him autonomy in his research and to take full advantage of his intellectual curiosity. “There is always something new to learn,” he says.

    When asked what this honor means to him, Clement is again choked up. “I’m trying to help people figure out who they are and what they can do,” he says. “An award like this makes me realize that, in some way, I am achieving that goal.” — Dorothy Guerrero

    Congratulations, Michael! See all Texas Ten winners here.

  • Peyton Wernli Receives Accounting Excellence in Accounting Award

    Peyton Wernli

    Join us in congratulating this year’s Department of Accounting Excellence in Accounting award winner, Peyton Wernli!

    This award is presented to a 4th year accounting student who has demonstrated excellence at all levels of their accounting coursework. The recipient of this award embodies a mastery of accounting knowledge that suggests the recipient will be a leader in a professional accounting environment.

    "While I originally came to UT with the intention of going to medical school and gathering some general business knowledge along the way, I fell in love with my first accounting class. Everything clicked and fascinated me in a way no other subject had. Plus, it offered me an avenue outside of medicine to continue to serve people and make a difference. I knew it would be a disservice to myself not to take advantage of the UT's world-class accounting program while I had the chance. I switched my major during my third year and never looked back," says Peyton.

    Congratulations, Peyton!

    PhD Student Dan Rimkus Awarded Doctoral Fellowship in Accounting Grant

    Dan Rimkus

    The Deloitte Foundation awarded Dan Rimkus one of ten annual Doctoral Fellowships in Accounting. The grant supports a student's dissertation work and final year of coursework.

    Each year, universities are invited to apply for the fellowship and students are nominated by the accounting faculty from their school. A selection committee composed of four eminent accounting educators chose Dan as one of this year’s recipients.

    Join us in congratulating Dan for this honor!

    Shuping Chen and Steve Smith Receive McCombs’ Amplify Inclusion Award

    Shuping Chen and Steve Smith

    Professors Shuping Chen and Steve Smith recently won the Amplify Inclusion Award from Texas McCombs. Shuping was nominated and selected by MPA students and Steve was nominated and selected by BBA students.

    These professors encourage students to bring a different perspective to the classroom, inspire classroom discussion to further our readiness for diversity in the workplace, and give equal opportunities to all students to voice their opinions. We are proud to have inspirational leaders like Shuping and Steve at Texas McCombs. Thank you for all that you do!

    Faculty Awards and Achievements

    Jeff Hales

    Professor Jeffrey Hales was recently named in Accounting Today's Top 100 Most Influential People. Jeff serves as the chair of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board- SASB, is a member of the Climate Disclosure Standards Board, and teaches full-time here at UT Austin. Congratulations, Jeff!


    Jeff Johanns

    Senior Lecturer Jeff Johanns was honored with the Outstanding Accounting Educator Award by TXCPA. This award recognizes Texas accounting educators who have demonstrated excellence in teaching and have distinguished themselves through active service to the accounting profession. Thank you for all your dedication to UT both inside and outside of the classroom, Jeff!


    Lil Mills

    Professor Lil Mills won the 2019 American Taxation Association’s Outstanding Service Award. This award recognizes an ATA committee member who has gone above and beyond for the ATA for over ten years. To be eligible, the person must have a record of distinguished service as an ATA committee member and served as a chair of at least one ATA committee. Join us in celebrating Lil and the incredible achievement!


    Lisa Koonce

    Join us in congratulating Professor Lisa Koonce who was recently appointed to the Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council (FASAC). The FASAC advises the FASB on strategies, issues, projects, and other matter that affect standard setting. Keep up the great work, Lisa!

    Welcome Incoming PhD Students!

    Incoming PhD accounting students

    Welcome incoming PhD students! Our four new students come from across across the nation and globe, worked in various firms and industries, and have studied all over the world. We are looking forward to working with you here at Texas McCombs!

    From left to right: Minjae Kim, Rui Silva, Mandy Ellison, and Yiying Chen.

    Department of Accounting Sweeps 2019 PAR Rankings for 10th Year in a Row

    Number one foam finger

    Texas McCombs has taken first place for all three levels—undergraduate, master’s, and doctoral—in the 2019 Public Accounting Report’s Annual ranking. This is the 10th consecutive year for McCombs to make a clean sweep across all three levels.

    For 28 years in a row, Texas McCombs has placed first or second in the undergraduate rankings.
    McCombs has led the master's program rankings for 25 out of the past 26 years.
    Our doctoral program has taken the No.1 spot 16 times in the last 18 years.

    The PAR is billed as “the independent newsletter of the accounting profession since 1978.” For the undergraduate and graduate rankings, professors for the past 35+ years have been asked to rank programs at American colleges and universities on a 1 to 10 scale on the single question, “Which programs consistently turn out students capable of some day attaining partner status?” In the doctoral rankings, professors are asked to name the programs they most regard for turning out accounting professors.

    We are extremely excited the PAR once again recognized us for our superior faculty, students, and programs. Hook 'Em!

    Accounting Faculty Promotions

    Brady Williams

    Join us in congratulating Brady Williams as he has been recommended by President Hartzell for promotion to Associate Professor effective September 1, 2021.

    Brady holds degrees from Brigham Young University and the University of Washington (PhD). He teaches an introductory tax course and his research primarily focuses on the effects of tax incentives and tax enforcement on corporate decisions.

    Congratulations, Brady! Well deserved!