Bill has led a storied career at Plante Moran since joining the firm in 1971 as a proofreader. In addition to serving as Managing Partner from 2001–2009, he was on the firm’s leadership team as a group managing partner from 1995–2001 and launched the Ann Arbor office in 1982. After stepping down as managing partner, he co-authored a business consulting book with Managing Partner Gordon Krater: Succession Transition: a Roadmap for Seamless Transitions in Leadership (2011). Bill is frequently asked to speak about succession planning, leadership transition, and how to build a sustainable organization.
As the firm’s Managing Partner, Bill and the management team were pioneers who sowed the seeds for Plante Moran to become a significant regional firm in the Midwest. During Bill’s tenure, the firm expanded its geographic footprint and broadened its service capabilities. Bill facilitated and supervised three mergers, resulting in offices in Chicago and Elgin, Illinois; Flint, Michigan; and Cincinnati, Ohio. Plante Moran also expanded its international capabilities through the creation of Plante Moran International Business Services, which has offices and staff members in Shanghai, China; Mumbai, India; and Monterrey, Mexico. Finally, the firm added a host of new services, including: Plante Moran Trust, Plante Moran Insurance Agency, Plante Moran Group Benefit Advisors, Enterprise Risk Services, Enterprise Resource Planning, Japanese Auto Supplier Services, and the Governmental Accounting Services team.
Under Bill’s leadership, Plante Moran tripled its revenue and doubled the number of its staff, all while maintaining its reputation and standing as one of the country’s best places to work. The firm energized staff to grow and compete while emphasizing accountability and client service. Bill became known for his signature sign-off statement, “Thanks for listening.”
Since stepping down as managing partner, Bill consults with other professional service firms on their organization, strategy, culture, staff development, and succession planning process. He’s also a mentor and coach to several Plante Moran staff and partners, helping to developing future leaders for the firm. In fact, Bill is so well known for his ability to develop staff that in 2015, the firm introduced the Bill Hermann Staff Development Award, which recognizes staff for their leadership, ability to provide constructive feedback, and commitment to developing others.
Bill is active in a number of business and community activities, and he has gained national recognition from Accounting Today (2004-2008) and CPA Magazine (2003-2006) as one of 100 most influential people in the profession. He was named one of the profession’s Most Admired Peers by INSIDE Public Accounting in 2008. He graduated from University of Detroit with a B.S. in accounting.