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Experience

Joe is the partner in charge of professional standards for Plante Moran’s public sector. A thought leader in the changing world of governmental accounting standards, Joe is known for his involvement with proposed new accounting pronouncements and his understanding of the principles that underlie the various accounting rules and procedures.

Joe has spent his entire 34-year career working with state and local units of government, ranging in size from moderate-sized townships to the State of Michigan and ranging in complexity from libraries to public universities with associated medical campuses. Most recently, Joe has focused on implementation of the upcoming pension standards (GASB 67 & 68) for both single employers and state-wide plans.

Joe is regularly called on to share his expertise with the governmental industry at various trade organizations, such as the AICPA’s Government Accounting & Auditing Conference. Joe participates in the standard-setting process for new GASBs in the AICPA’s State and Local Government Expert Panel, as well as advisor to various GASB Implementation Guides. In prior years he served on the AICPA’s Government Audit Quality Center, and Governmental Technical Subcommittee of the Ethics division.

In October 2013, Joe was selected as an honorary life member by the Michigan GFOA, in recognition of his contributions over the past 25 years. Joe was recognized in 2011 by the Michigan Association of CPAs for his work with the MACPA’s involvement in Michigan’s Turnaround Task Force. He has a B.B.A. from The University of Michigan (with high distinction).

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Additional Thoughts

Reading governmental financial statements: A primer
Want to know how your government is doing financially? Here’s how to read those daunting government audited financial statements.
Joe Heffernan
Article January 26, 2017 7 min read