Understanding Financials and Working with Accountants and Treasurers – A Practical Approach
Part 1 - Working with your In House Financial Staff
As the Executive Director, you need to be up to date on the financial status of your organization at all times. A great relationship with the main provider of your financial information is ESSENTIAL. How often do you meet with your in-house financial person? How much information should you received each month, each quarter, and each year? How much control do you have over budgeting and expense classification? Do you know where and with whom your organization’s funds are invested? Do you know who your organization’s signing authorities are and are you sure they’ve been updated with all the regulatory bodies you deal with i.e. CRA, banks etc.? Do you understand the financial information you receive?
This seminar will provide you with practical advice on how you, as the leader of your organization, can enhance your day to day knowledge of your financial status without being an accountant. This will be an interactive seminar – with some ideas for discussion and lots of time for questions.
How to hire the right financial staff
How to ensure controls are in place
How to develop and understand the budget
What to do with excess funds
The point of contingency accounts
Dealing with regulatory bodies
Understanding the year end audit and hiring the right accounting firm
When to ask questions – key “warning signs” and how to recognize them
What you don’t need to worry about
Facilitator: Susan Lucato, CGA
Born and raised in Victoria BC, Susan graduated from Reynolds Secondary and went on to Camosun College completing her BBA in Accounting with a Co-operative education endorsement. Through her co-op work terms with Price Waterhouse, Susan began the process of completing her Certified General Accountant designation (1996).
As a Senior Manager in the Independent Business Group, Susan spent fourteen years with Price Waterhouse, which through various local mergers and changes became Grant Thornton Chartered Accountants. She was instrumental in developing the local firm’s small business advisory and bookkeeping services departments and spent many years as the audit manager for a large variety of local charitable organizations.
After retiring from public practice in 2002 to spend more time with a young family, Susan moved more fully into the charitable sector, and in September 2002 took the position of Finance Director with the Victoria Foundation. As Canada’s 6th largest Community Foundation, Susan played an instrumental role in the growth of the Foundation’s assets and the organization’s presence in the local charitable community. The role focused on the financial oversight of the Foundation’s $185M endowment fund and included a national role in the community foundation movement, working closely with BC’s First Nations groups on specific trusts and the review and updating of the Victoria Foundation Act in 2009.
In August, 2011 Susan resigned from the Victoria Foundation to pursue her own financial consulting practice and continues to work closely with the Victoria Foundation among other local charitable organizations and small businesses. In her spare time, Susan is wife to Sandro (also an accountant), Mom to 11 and 15 year old boys, and is an avid half-marathon walker.