Huth Thompson LLP Lands November Small Business of the Month Award
The below article was originally published on GreaterLafayetteCommerce.com.
Near Thanksgiving Day each November, the staff of Huth Thompson LLP gather in its conference room for a traditional meal of ham, turkey and trimmings.
Ronald T. Huth, a member of the firm from 1957 to 1999 and now retired, sits at the head of the table. And today’s co-owner and managing partner, Lincoln Perkins, gives a brief history of the firm, thanking Huth for his tenure and contributions.
“It’s a way to honor him,” Perkins says.
This year, the gathering will serve up an extra dose of gratitude as the community’s largest certified public accounting and consulting firm celebrates its latest milestone. It has been named the November 2015 Small Business of the Month by Greater Lafayette Commerce.
The firm is also blessed with visits from another long-time partner, Steve Thompson, who retired in 2009, Perkins says. “He lives here part of the year, and in Florida the rest, so he comes in and out.”
Nearly 90 Years in Business
While none of today’s 35 employees, 15 of them CPAs, have Huth or Thompson as their surnames, the traditions of those who preceded them provide a foundation the current crew is committed to keeping.
“It’s our recognized name, our brand in the community,” says Kyle Clark. He, Travis Duell, Kimberly Morisette and Matthew Robertson are co-owners and partners along with Perkins.
It all began in 1927 when Ron Huth’s father, Alvin Huth, opened his accounting practice. Separately, another firm began operating in 1971. The two merged in 1998, becoming Huth Thompson LLP.
Today, the firm is headquartered at 415 Columbia St. in Lafayette (765/428-5000, www.huththompson.com), with another office at 311 East Drexel Parkway in Rensselaer (219/866-5196).
Besides full-service accounting, the firm conducts audits of small businesses and nonprofits, provides business tax planning, and offers a complete business solutions package that includes bookkeeping, payroll, tax return preparation and planning.
Loyal, Long-term Clients
In return, it earns salutes like these:
- “The Huth Thompson LLP staff is extremely knowledgeable and professional.” – Mark Wright, Purdue Alumni Association.
- “Huth Thompson has been a valuable resource to our organization.” – Dick Rhoad, Wabash Center.
- “The team at Huth Thompson takes an interest in our business and is a valuable contributor to our ongoing success.” – Tim Everidge, Radian Research Inc.
- “From the front desk to the accountants, administrative services and tax advisors, Huth Thompson individuals are top-notch and very professional.” – Phyllis Sondgeroth, Senesac Inc., who has worked with the firm for more than 20 years and had it handle the company’s sale to an employee stock ownership plan.
The firm’s clients are primarily in north central Indiana, with some beyond that area.
“We serve a lot of small businesses, and with those, we serve the same people with individual tax work, estate planning and their kids’ returns,” Perkins says. “And we have a lot of individual clients, local people we’ve prepared personal tax returns for, some for as many as 40 years.”
While CPAs in smaller firms have to be generalists, “We are big enough that we can also have niche areas,” Perkins says.
Lafayette’s stability, solid industries and Purdue University combine to make this a great place for their business, says Perkins, who was born and raised in Frankfort.
“We are local,” says Clark, who hails from Crawfordsville.
Keeping current with regulations and changes is always a focus. Besides reading industry publications and subscribing to research reports, the firm regularly hosts in-house training where a staff member researches and presents on a topic.
“We have planned and coordinated succession, so we will always be here for our clients,” Perkins says. “We have a system in place for people to buy in as partners and buy out. Our goals are controlled, steady growth.”
While Job One is serving clients, “We try to create a family-oriented atmosphere,” Clark says. “We want our people to feel comfortable talking to us, and our doors are always open. We do a lot of things to make work fun and a little more comfortable.”
One example: As a United Way of Greater Lafayette pacesetter, Huth Thompson lets employees who contribute wear jeans on Fridays.
The firm likes its staff to be involved in the community, too.
“Everyone has their own passions, and we want people to follow those,” Clark says. “Some are passionate about kids and work in that area. I’m on the campaign cabinet for United Way, and I find that fulfilling. In general, we encourage people to get involved. And when they do, they see it’s pretty rewarding.”
As a firm, Huth Thompson provides volunteers for downtown festivals. Staff members individually support a number of organizations, such as the March of Dimes, Habitat for Humanity, Junior Achievement, Legal Aid, Lafayette Symphony Orchestra and Foundation, Mental Health America of Tippecanoe County and Lyn Treece Boys & Girls Club.
“We are honored to be part of the community and enjoy being a presence here,” Perkins says.