Chastang, Ferrell, Sims & Eiserman
High school job:
Personal filing date:
A New York native who moved with her family to Orlando at age 4, Thomas as a youngster visited an accounting firm with her accountant neighbor as part of a learn-about-careers day. She liked what she saw, majored in accounting at the University of Central Florida and in 1989 joined Chastang, Ferrell, Sims & Eiserman, a now four-office firm. She says most of the work at the Celebration office is tax preparation.
Thomas, 43, a mother of three -- "I have a wonderful husband" -- sits on the board of the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants and is a council member of the national institute.
While at the schools, she doesn't hesitate to talk up her profession as a career, remembering that neighbor who took her to work. "I'm a big supporter of doing the same thing for young people."
» Emilia Quesada, 35, class-action defense litigation counsel for Fortune 500 companies and others, partner, Adorno & Yoss, Miami.
» Katherine W. Ezell, 59, represents guardians and foster care children pro bono, 2006 winner of the Tobias Simon Pro Bono award from the Florida Bar, also a commercial litigator and personal injury plaintiffs lawyer, partner, Podhurst Orseck, Miami.
» Marshall Gunn Jr., 53, governor-appointed board member, Florida Board of Accountancy, which oversees CPAs and CPA firms in Florida, also named by CPA Magazine as one of the 100 Most Influential CPAs nationally -- one of seven CPA financial planners on the list -- founding partner, Gunn & Co., Jacksonville. He specializes in tax and wealth planning.