August 6, 2016

Contact: Gigi Thompson Jarvis, CAE

Washington, DC—The National Association of Enrolled Agents (NAEA) has honored nine outstanding individuals with 2016 NAEA Awards in recognition of their significant contributions to the association and the enrolled agent profession.

The winners were announced during the annual awards ceremony at the 2016 NAEA National Conference held August 1 — 3 in Las Vegas. The nine awardees were nominated by their peers, based on unique standards for each award.

Those honored were:

  • The Founders Award was presented to Lonnie Gary, EA, USTCP, of Mountain View, CA, and to Jerry Joyce, EA, of Tampa, FL, in recognition of their significant contributions and service to NAEA and its members exemplifying the principles and goals envisioned by NAEA's founders. This lifetime achievement award is the association’s highest recognition.
  • Geri Bowman, EA, CPA, USTCP, of Mogadore, OH, was awarded the Excellence in Education Award in recognition of her dynamic successes and tireless efforts improving the quality and scope of NAEA’s education programs.
  • The Excellence in Public Awareness Award, a recognition of outstanding contributions to making enrolled agents more recognizable as America’s tax experts, was awarded to Laurie Ziegler, EA, of Saukville, WI, for her dedicated work with the news media, state government and social media.
  • Chris Davis, of Quincy, MA, received the Outstanding Supporter of Enrolled Agents Award in recognition of his contribution to increasing the value of NAEA membership and the ease of finding an enrolled agent through the NAEA Directory, which he conceived, developed and implemented.
  • Pat Jenkins, EA, of Albuquerque, NM, received the newly-named Lee T. Byrd, Jr. Outstanding Volunteer Award in recognition of her volunteer service to NAEA, its state affiliates and their local chapters. Jenkins was honored for her work in tax education, developing a strong working relationship with the State of New Mexico, her service on the national Ethics committee and her support for NAEA’s government relations efforts. The award was renamed this year to honor a beloved NAEA leader who recently passed.
  • Don Overstreet, EA, of Fayetteville, NC, received the Mentor Award for instilling excitement for the profession through his leadership, encouragement and support of fellow enrolled agents through the Facebook group he established to help candidates studying for the Enrolled Agent Exam.
  • Trish Evenstad, EA, of Westby, WI, was honored with the Emerging Leader Award for her skilled and enthusiastic leadership on the state level and substantial contributions to NAEA’s social media and public relations efforts.  
  • Gary Anspach, EA, of San Rafael, CA, received the Bill Payne Advocacy Award for his strong commitment to advocacy on behalf of enrolled agents on both the state and national level.  


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About Enrolled Agents
Enrolled agents (EAs) are America’s tax experts. They are the only federally-licensed tax practitioners that specialize in taxation and also have unlimited rights to represent taxpayers before the IRS. That means that if you get a letter from the IRS, or worse, are audited or are the target of a collection action, your EA can speak directly to the IRS on your behalf. While attorneys and certified public accountants are also licensed, only enrolled agents specialize exclusively in taxes. Enrolled agents are required to complete many hours of continuing education each year to ensure they are up-to-date on the constantly changing tax code and must abide by a code of ethics. 

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