Topics or areas of expertise that Darlene can talk about (even in her sleep):
- Retirement Readiness/Financial Fitness
- Fiduciary Responsibility
- Plan Audit Requirements
- Retirement Plan Compliance
- Potential Retirement Plan Design Issues
How we know she knows what she's doing:
- She began her career in the accounting industry in 1989.
- Prior to joining the Rea team in 1991 she worked at a local accounting firm.
- Darlene has been featured in several publications, such as Benefits Pro and Thompson Newsletter and has presented her expertise on a range of topics at numerous conferences.
- She earned her associate's degree in accounting technology from Kent State University and later went on to complete her bachelor's degree in accounting.
- She is the recipient of the 8th annual Distinguished Alumni award from Kent State University Tuscarawas.
- She was chosen as inaugural winner of the Chet Stocker Award for Service to the Profession in 2013, which is presented annually by Rea & Associates.
- Darlene was named the inaugural Accountant of the Month by Accounting Today.
- She earned her AICPA Advanced Defined Benefit Plans Audit Certificate in March of 2017.
Furthering her professional development, Darlene is involved with:
- The American Institute of CPAs
- The Ohio Society of CPAs (executive board)
- The Moore Stephens North America Employee Benefit Plan Special Interest Group (past member and chair)
- The American Society of Pension Professionals and Actuaries (certified 401(k) plan administrator)
- The Society of Certified Senior Advisors (holds certified senior advisor credentials)
- Kent State University - Tuscarawas (board of trustees)
- Pike Mutual Insurance Company (board of directors)
When she's not in the office, you can find her:
- Staying productive around her family's farm
- Attending truck and tractor pulls and Sprint car and NASCAR races
- Working on projects for charitable causes, such as making teddy bears for Victory Junction Gang Camp, blankets for Project Linus and homemade dog treats for various events and organizations.
Darlene is involved in her community:
- Kent State University Tuscarawas Accounting Advisory Committee
- Full Life Center (board member and volunteer)
- A member of the planning committee for the local Walk to End Alzheimer's group.
Inside The Mind Of...
- What does "A Brighter Way" mean to you? To me, "A Brighter Way" means not just the ordinary - a genuine extra effort.
- What line of The Rea Way describes you the best? Choose to be positive, every day. & Take your work personally.
- What do you consider to be your "brightest" quality? My ability to multi-task. Oh wait, that is actually supposed to be a bad quality. It would have to be my willingness to share with others.
- What is your most memorable moment at Rea? Besides passing the CPA exam, I am proud to say that I have met Mr. Rea.
Just For Fun:
- What did 10-year-old you want to be when you grew up? An accountant
- What profession would you choose if you didn't go into accounting? Professional philanthropist - if I could afford it.
- What is your most prized possession? Pleasant memories with family and friends
A hardworking, easy-going, quiet professional who enjoys personal space and time. According to Richard Simmons (yes, that Richard) I have a kind soul.