Serving in the State of Busyness

by Jared Theis | Apr 22, 2021
busyness graphic

I am sure (or at least hoping) that I am not alone in feeling that there are more things to do – personally and professionally – than there is time in the day. The end of each day generally leaves me with equal parts frustration and motivation to make tomorrow better than today. Yet, when I stop to think about all that has happened each year, I am always surprised and pleased with how much has been accomplished.

In addition to serving on the WSCPA Board of Directors, providing accounting advisory and capital markets readiness services to clients for my day job, being a husband and dad for my family, and trying to keep our chickens, ducks, cats, and dog in order on “the farm” in Spokane Valley, I also serve on the accounting advisory boards for Eastern Washington University and Washington State University, including also as chair of the latter. Probably sounds a bit crazy, but I love it. People often ask me: “Do you like serving on boards? And doesn’t that take up a lot of your time?” In short, the answers to both are simply, “Yes.” (Albeit those who know me will admit that my answers are never short thanks to the gift of gab!)

Many of us serve across our communities, families, and workplaces, and we all do it for different reasons, even out of necessity. A colleague of mine once advised me, “Don’t just pick a cause for your résumé or because you feel compelled to give back. Find something you care about, so you can both benefit from the involvement.” For me, I enjoy serving because it helps me fulfill part of that motivation to make tomorrow better than today, not just for me, but for my kids’ generation and future generations. I have a passion for this profession and the impact it has on our communities. I want it to continue to flourish and provide equal opportunities to anyone and everyone that wants to be a part of it, just like it has for me and my family. Even more so, I have a passion for helping students and our younger generations to have opportunities, achieve their potential, and find success in life, whether that’s in our profession or something else. The joy and appreciation that I see in students when they land that job offer, or receive that scholarship that lifts a financial burden, makes the time investment worth it and provides the motivation to do it again.

Recently, I had lunch with a couple of friends in Spokane, who are also CPAs (and members of the WSCPA!). We were commiserating about our busy schedules, especially all the “important” meetings to attend that seemingly made the days longer. One of them shared a quote by Charles de Gaulle, “The graveyards are full of indispensable men.” We laughed, but it was also a good reminder that even though everything seems important or essential in the moment, someone else can always pick up and take over where we left off. We all live in our own state of busyness, but we can choose how we spend our time to provide fulfillment and that sense of accomplishment.

With that said, I feel very thankful and fortunate to have been the chair of the WSCPA for this past year. It’s certainly been marked with significant and unprecedented challenges, but I’ve appreciated that experience and how it has helped me to grow both personally and professionally. I am also proud of what the Society has accomplished over the past year, and the direction that it is headed. Only time will tell, but hopefully I’ve helped make the Society and our profession better tomorrow than it is today. I know one thing: Tom Sulewski will be a great chair and can turn my shortcomings into successes!

As this will be my final column as chair of the WSCPA, I also wanted to take an opportunity to thank a few folks. Firstly, I would like to thank my wife, Krystal, for supporting me and our family throughout the years – I wouldn’t be able to do this without her. I would also like to thank KPMG for allowing me the time to serve, and my fellow board members for their support and participation throughout this past year as chair to help make many of our strategic initiatives come to fruition. And a tremendous thank you to the WSCPA staff who make everything possible – this was a very challenging year, but I am so impressed at the flexibility and dedication that this team provided to ensure the best experience possible for the members.

And most of all, I would like to thank you, our members, for all your support and involvement with the WSCPA and our great profession. We strive to the provide the best experience possible to our members as noted in “A Message to our Membership” from Monette Anderson, Director of Membership, on page 4 of this edition. As always, please feel free to reach out to any of the board members or staff to let us know how we can serve you better.

Jared-Theis-Headshot-Web-150x200Jared Theis, CPA, is an Accounting Advisory Director in the Seattle office of KPMG LLP and chair of the WSCPA Board of Directors. You can contact him at

This article appears in the spring 2021 issue of the Washington CPA magazine. Read more here.

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