Chris is one of the Co-Managing Shareholders of the firm. As a Co-Managing Shareholder, Chris shares the responsibility for leading the firm’s initiative for product delivery and quality while working closely with the firm’s Board of Directors. He joined the Firm in 2017 as a tax shareholder with more than 25 years of private and public accounting experience.  Prior to joining Schneider Downs, Chris served as a Tax Market Leader and International Tax Partner for a Big Four public accounting Firm.

He has a diverse background serving large U.S. multinational companies, closely-held companies, partnerships and S corporations in the areas of international tax consulting and compliance, tax accounting and mergers and acquisitions.

Chris advises clients in diversified sectors including consumer products and retail, healthcare and manufacturing and distribution.


Masters – Taxation, College of William & Mary
B.S. – Accounting, West Virginia University

Professional and Community Involvement

Member – American Institute of Certified Public Accountants


Do you have a hobby/personal passion?

Baseball, Running, American history

What was the best advice you’ve ever received?

Strive to be “the” foremost expert on a topic

Who is your role model?

My Mother

What was your childhood dream?

To play professional baseball

If you could go back in time, what advice would you give your college self?

Slow down, be in the present

People would be surprised to know that I…

…have run 4 marathons

What is the best or most interesting thing about your career?

After 25+ years, I continue to learn something new every day

What was your first job?   

Coopers & Lybrand – Honolulu, Hawaii

Do you have a “motto”? (spoken or unspoken)

Treat everyone like your most important client

When you have an hour of free time, what do you like to do?   

Be with my wife and three kids

Do you have advice for young professionals?

Say “yes”

Our Thoughts On


Big Problem: Pandemic-fueled Tax Liabilities For Dealerships

Big Thinking: Change Accounting Methods To Achieve $600,000 In Deferred Tax Savings.

Shareholder STEVE BARBER has been with Schneider Downs since 2003 and has over 20 years of experience in all areas of tax advisory services including tax planning, research and compliance, accounting, acquiring, selling and operational and financial reporting matters for closely held businesses. Steve serves clients in several diversified industries, including automobile, construction, real estate and manufacturing. As leader of the Automotive Services Group, Steve learned from most, if not all clients that they were struggling with COVID-19’s impact on their ability to maintain an inventory of new vehicles. For dealers using the last-in, first-out (LIFO) method of inventory accounting, when inventories dip, normally the LIFO reserve is recaptured, and more federal income taxes are due. Therefore, because of the pandemic-fueled shortage, many of Steve’s clients were faced with potential significant tax liabilities. Steve and his team took a two-pronged approach to helping their clients avoid the LIFO reserve recapture. “We suggested a different accounting method to calculate LIFO reserve to avoid the recognition of income prematurely,” he said. In addition, the group devised a way to bolster their clients’ inventory calculations. “We combine the dealer’s used vehicles and parts with their new vehicles to create a larger pool of inventory and to capitalize on the very large used vehicle inflation,” said Steve. This made the LIFO reserve recapture not as drastic and, in some cases, increased the reserve. Working with Steve, one client experienced a 25% increase to their LIFO reserve, rather than what would have been a 60% drop caused by the pandemic. Implementing Steve’s team’s suggestions, the dealer changed their income by approximately $2 million and achieved over $600,000 in deferred tax savings. Schneider Downs provides Big Thinking and Personal Focus in delivering a variety of services for large and small businesses, both publicly and privately held, as well as nonprofit organizations, government entities and more. Through our commitment to thought leadership and knowledge management, we deliver the solutions our clients need with a personal commitment to service.

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