Christopher Chapman, CPA CGMA

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Education: Fresno State, Bachelor of Science in Business Administration Accountancy

Family: I am happily married to my loving wife Tammy and we still sort of love our children. I really love my dog.

What did you do before the Garabedian Group? I have worked as a Controller in AG related fields, in the auto industry, and in an international wholesale construction parts and equiipment company. I accumulated 7 years in public accoutning before joining TGG.

What qualities does it take to work at an accounting firm and what can you tell me about the team that works with you? You need a team of detail-oriented people. Ideally you want staff to care more about the client than the product they are working on. When you take the time to know your client, the product being put out will be esceptional because of the caring staff behind it.

What’s the most rewarding part of what you do? Assisting someone with a tax issue when the government agency is after them. It is a nice feeling to relieve them of the stress caused by the IRS.

What innovations in the accounting world are you most excited about? Working in an environment where I can work from anywhere in the world I want as long as I have a computer and internet connection. It creates flexibility. I most certainly don’t want to work 24 hours per day. However, during tax season, traditionally you leave home early and get home late. Usually this means missing dinner and family time. With the work anywhere/anytime ability, I can leave work early, have dinner with the family, interact with my wife and kids, and get more work done when they have gone to bed. My wife is no longer a "tax season widow". The flexibility keeps a thriving work and home life.

What got you interested in becoming an accountant? It is a family trait. My father is an accountant so I have known from my sophomore year in high school that is what I wanted to do.

What was your first job and what did you learn from it? Construction, where we extended a home and did all the work, from plumbing underground to the roofing. It was the most fulfilling work ever, since I saw something I helped create with my own two hands. I also learned I  didn’t want to work like that for the rest of my life as it was hard work and very painful. We stopped work each night with smashed fingers, in extreme heat and moderate cold.

What are your roots in the San Joaquin Valley? I have  lived here since I was 7 years old. I grew up on acreage with horses, dogs and other animals. Within 1 mile of my house I had almonds, oranges, apples, lemons, grapefruit, and walnut orchards. I never realized how lucky I was. I appreciate my roots in the valley even more now as I grow older.

What do you do in your spare time? If I am not playing softball, I am either riding my motorcycle up in the mountains through the winding roads or making ink pens in my garage. Because my office job is mostly creating an intangible product (tax return), I like the feeling of making something with my hands that I can see and touch.