Headshot of Michelle Watterworth.

Personally, I love to travel and hike; national parks are a favorite destination! In the fall, when I’m not cheering at my twin girls’ volleyball games, you’ll find me cheering on my favorite football team from my alma mater, the University of Michigan (Go Blue!).

Michelle Watterworth
Partner, CPA


I’m Plante Moran’s national public sector professional standards technical leader, responsible for the technical quality assurance of the firm’s government, K-12, higher education, and single audit practices. I oversee all technical aspects of these practice areas, including addressing emerging accounting, auditing, and compliance issues. With more than 30 years of experience, I collaborate with internal teams and clients, particularly on complex issues, to uphold high-quality standards and develop solutions to governmental accounting, auditing, and compliance issues that satisfy all parties. As an audit partner, my specialty is in serving large public employee retirement systems (PERS).

Recently, I was appointed by the Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF) to serve as the AICPA-appointed representative to the Governmental Accounting Standards Advisory Council (GASAC). GASAC advises the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB) on strategic and technical issues, including other matters that affect standard setting. As a member of GASAC, I consult with GASB on technical issues on the board’s agenda, project priorities, and other various matters that may be requested by the GASB or its chair.

I was previously the chair of the 15-member AICPA State and Local Government Expert Panel. Participation on this panel provided me with key insights early on, from which I proactively have developed advanced training and implementation tools for clients. My participation in the panel allowed me to contribute to various chapters of the AICPA State and Local Governments Audit Guide, including the chapter on pensions and on OPEB. I have also presented webcasts for the AICPA Governmental Audit Quality Center, taught various topics to other CPAs via AICPA-sponsored training events, and am currently on the AICPA Governmental and NFP Conference Planning Committee. I have been asked to speak nationally on public sector technical issues at various industry and professional associations, including the AICPA, P2F2, and various state GFOA organizations. In 2022, the MICPA selected me for its Women to Watch: Experienced Leader Award.