Annette Thomas, Penserra’s Director of Accounting, brings to work each day a healthy enthusiasm for her profession, her family, and her South Jersey roots. A working mother of a precocious toddler, Annette’s attention to detail allows her to find an effective balance between work and home.
Q: What motivated you to pursue a degree in accounting from Cabrini University?
A: If you ask any little kid what they want to be when they grow up, chances are they don’t even know what an accountant is. This wasn’t the case with me. My mom loves to tell the story about the day she found me at the desk of my dad’s home office, writing out checks to my Barbie dolls and recording them in the check register. From then, I’ve just always been drawn to working with numbers. So, when it came time for me to pick a major, Accounting was the obvious choice.
Q: You began your career as a tax consultant at Deloitte. What are some of the major differences of working for a boutique firm like Penserra versus one of the Big Four accounting firms?
A: At Penserra, I get to be a part of not only every accounting aspect of the firm, but several other operational functions that I may not have the ability to be involved with or make an impact at a larger firm. Penserra may be boutique in size, but the opportunities are huge. I could also name just about every employee at Penserra.
Q: You joined Penserra in 2017 after moving to California from New Jersey. What convinced you to accept a position with Penserra?
A: The first 8 years of my career had been in large organizations where my roles were very defined in their scope. I was looking for a position which would allow me the opportunity to gain broader exposure to the operations of a company. Penserra offered an opportunity where my contributions would have a meaningful impact on the growing success of the firm.
Q: You very recently received a promotion to Director of Accounting. How do you plan on navigating the role while reporting directly to Penserra CEO George Madrigal?
A: Success in any role would not be possible without strong teamwork and collaboration, and it didn’t take me long to realize the value Penserra places on those two components. Effective team work and collaboration begins with trust. George holds a lot of trust in his team leaders to make thoughtful decisions independently that will impact the firm. I look forward to providing key contributions in my new role as well as continue my professional growth within the firm.
Q: You’re the mother of a very precocious toddler. How do you balance a healthy work-life balance?
A: I really try to stay organized both at work and at home. I have a calendar event for just about everything with alerts that can’t be dismissed. Family time at home each night is important to both my husband and me. We do our best to use the few hours in the evening to have dinner together and to see what new things our fast growing little one is learning. Penserra provides great support in keeping work and life in balance by providing the ability to telecommute and even the ability to bring my daughter to the office if I need to.
Q: You’re a rabid fan of the Philadelphia Eagles. What do you think of their chances to repeat as Super Bowl champs?
A: It’s been rough season so far to say the least, but if we don’t make it back this year or even in the next few years, Philadelphia will continue to celebrate the accomplishments of the 2017-2018 season for a long time, it was very special.