Message from NASC's President
Section: NASC

It is a true honor to serve the National Association of State Comptrollers as president this year, and I look forward to seeing you all at the NASC conference in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania this March 15-17. 
Harrisburg is located two hours from Philadelphia and Washington, DC in south central Pennsylvania. It is a short 20-minute drive to the small town of Hershey, better known as the sweetest place on earth, where Milton Hershey built the first Hershey Chocolate factory. Harrisburg is also a 45-minute drive to Gettysburg, where you can find a wealth of Civil War history, sites and memorabilia. The conference will be held at the Harrisburg Hilton hotel overlooking the beautiful Susquehanna River and along restaurant row, where you’ll find great food. There is plenty to see and do while in Pennsylvania, so plan to extend your stay if possible.
Don’t forget that NASACT’s Executive Committee is again offering travel assistance for this conference. NASC members or their designees are eligible to receive up to $750 in travel assistance to attend.
The Program Committee has worked hard to put together sessions, roundtables and networking opportunities that address issues identified by state comptrollers. Sessions will include:
  • “State of the States” session from NASBO Executive Director John Hicks.
  • Updates from our friends at the Governmental Accounting Standards Board and separate sessions on changes to the Financial Reporting Model and GASB 77.
  • ERP trends, emerging methodologies and lessons learned.
  • Rate setting for central services and consolidated IT services.
  • Roundtables on federal/state issues, operational effectiveness and best practices.
  • Using analytics to drive HR decisions.
  • Issues related to the new Uniform Guidance. 
In addition to many informative sessions, there will be a tour of the state capitol on Thursday evening. Pennsylvania's capitol has many picturesque areas, so you won't want to miss the tour. You'll see incredible architecture and artwork reflecting the storied history of the commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

The Program committee was chaired by Tom White, who passed away on Thursday, January 19 after a short illness. Tom was active in NASC committees and activities and was an avid supporter of the association since he became comptroller in 2010. Tom enjoyed attending NASC conferences and making new friends, and was always willing to share his wisdom and experiences with others. Tom will be missed very much by the NASC community, and we appreciated his dedicated service. May he rest in peace.
It is especially gratifying to be working with an extraordinary Executive Committee that has enormous energy and passion for advancing government accountability and transparency, innovation and efficiency, and financial reporting. For this reason, please help me thank this wonderful team of executives serving the association this year: 
  • Thomas L. White, Jr., Alabama State Comptroller, whose friendship to NASC and its members will never be forgotten. Tom would have been the incoming president at the upcoming conference.
  • Vice President: Cynthia Cloud, State Auditor (WY)
  • Secretary/Treasurer: Alan Skelton, State Accounting Officer (GA)
  • Immediate Past President: John Reidhead, Director - Division of Finance (UT)
  • Steve Barnett, State Auditor (SD)
  • Kristopher Knight, Director - Division of Accounting (DE)
  • Stacy Neal, Director of Accounting (MO)

NASC is also very fortunate to have so many of you leading and participating in committees and information sharing groups. Participation in these committees helps build our professional network and the collective knowledge we need to stay abreast of emerging issues, changing requirements, and the demands on state government financial leaders. These committees and information sharing groups thrive with your participation and are vital to our professional growth and effectiveness. Thanks to all of you who contribute in big and small ways to these meaningful discussions.   

I have the greatest respect and admiration for the extra time and effort our committee chairs, co-chairs and information sharing group leaders give to benefit association members, and especially want to thank them for their dedicated service.    
NASC has welcomed several new state comptrollers since the NASC annual conference last March:
  • Kathleen Baxter, Alabama
  • Roderick Becker, Hawaii
  • Liza Clark, South Dakota
  • Cheryl Grey, Montana
  • Laura Jackson, Mississippi
  • Peter Keenan, Rhode Island
  • Tera Klutz, Indiana
  • J.B. McCuskey, West Virginia
  • Susana Mendoza, Illinois
I still remember when I was newly appointed to the position of Pennsylvania state comptroller in 2007.  There’s so much to do it can be overwhelming at first. So I asked for advice from the outgoing comptroller, and his advice was simple and effective. He said, “get involved in NASACT.” I didn’t understand the wisdom of those simple words at the time, but I’ve come to really value our association. Truly, the more you get involved, the more you will get out of it. If you are new to NASC, or just getting to know NASACT, please “get involved” and you will have no regrets.
I hope to see you all in Harrisburg at the 2017 NASC conference. It will be a great time to network, learn and share.   

Anna Maria Kiehl is the state comptroller and chief accounting officer of Pennsylvania. Ms. Kiehl is a certified public accountant with 34 years of financial management experience. She is a recipient of the National Association of State Comptrollers' President’s Award and currently serves as NASC's president. She holds a B.S. degree in business administration from the Pennsylvania State University.