Beta Alpha Psi Recognizes Business Professionals with Award for Contributions in Academia, Business and Government

Samantha Simunyu

Published August 11, 2015

Durham, N.C. – Beta Alpha Psi awarded three professionals the Business Information Professional of the Year award sponsored by the Institute of Management Accountants, Inc. (IMA) at the Beta Alpha Psi Annual Meeting in Milwaukee, WI. The award, created in 1974, is presented annually to individuals who make significant contributions to the business information professions in the areas of academia, business and government. 

Candidates are nominated by a Beta Alpha Psi chapter and chosen by the Beta Alpha Psi Board of Directors. The award recipient’s nominating chapter receives a $2,000 monetary award from IMA.  

“As the leading global organization representing management accounting and business and industry professionals, IMA is proud to sponsor the Beta Alpha Psi Business Information Professional of the Year award. This year's winners, Leslie Murphy, President & CEO, Murphy Consulting, Inc.; Mark Taylor, Accounting Department Chair and Andrew D. Braden Professor of Accounting and Auditing, Case Western Reserve University; and David (Dave) DeFreitas, Group CFO, Caterpillar Inc., were an impressive group and provide great inspiration to the students and faculty.” stated Jodi Ryan, IMA director of student & academic relations.

The individuals listed below are the 2015 award winners.

Leslie A. Murphy currently serves as the CEO and President at Murphy Consulting, Inc. She sat on the senior leadership team and was as a Group Managing Partner at Plante & Moran. In 2005 she became the third woman to chair the Board of directors of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (ACIPA). Murphy continues to serve the profession as a member of the AICPA Governing Council and the Relations with the Judiciary Subcommittee of the AICPA. For her service, she was presented the AICPA Gold Medal for Distinguished Service, the highest individual award within the profession. Outside of the profession, Leslie is on the Boards of numerous corporations, and charitable organizations in her community.

Mark Taylor is the Andrew D. Braden Professor of Accounting and Auditing and Chair of the Department of Accountancy at the Weatherhead School of Management where he teaches in the corporate governance and auditing/assurance areas. Mark is currently Past President of the Auditing Section of the American Accounting Association, having assumed the office in August 2014 after stepping down from serving as President. He completed a three-year term of service on the Senior Technical Committee of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ Auditing Standards Board in January 2012 and fulfilled a one-year term as an Academic Fellow in the Professional Practice Group of the Office of the Chief Accountant at the United States Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington DC from 2005-2006.

After earning a bachelor’s in accounting from Bradley University, Dave DeFreitas later became a CPA and pursued an MBA from Northern Illinois University. He started out his career in public accounting before moving to Caterpillar where he is now Group CFO for Corporate Services. He has been with Caterpillar for 26 years and has held 17 different accounting and General Business roles in the U.S. and England. Outside of work, DeFreitas chairs the National Council of Advisors to the Foster College of Business at Bradley University and is a past chair and current member of the Department of Accounting Advisory Council at Bradley. He is also the Treasurer of his fraternity Housing Corporation and volunteers with the Illinois High School Association at the State Basketball championships.

About Beta Alpha Psi

Founded in 1919, Beta Alpha Psi is an honor organization for financial information students and professionals. The primary objective of Beta Alpha Psi is to encourage and give recognition to scholastic and professional excellence in the business information field. This includes promoting the study and practice of accounting, finance and information systems; providing opportunities for self-development, service and association among members and practicing professionals, and encouraging a sense of ethical, social and public responsibility.

Headquartered in Durham, NC, Beta Alpha Psi has over 300 chapters on college and university campuses with over 300,000 members initiated since Beta Alpha Psi's formation.