DONALD B. APPLEGARTH CPA

Don has accumulated more than 30 years of public accounting experience. While at Schneider Downs and at a national accounting firm, he has served companies in a variety of industries, including, but not limited to, retail, manufacturing, distribution, real estate, contracting, natural resources and not-for-profit organizations. He also  serves a key role in the firm’s quality control and risk assessment process.

Don audits and consults for SEC clients, several of which have international operations. He has brought innovative and timely solutions in responding to complex and diverse client needs. In addition, he has presented various cost-saving strategies and process improvement recommendations for his clients. Don has led the firm’s efforts in monitoring changes brought about by IFRS revenue recognition, and leases and advising on effective implementation strategies to maximize efficiencies and optimize value.

Don has also provided valuable transaction assistance services in the form of deal structuring and due diligence that has resulted in maximized return to his clients.

Education

B.S. – Accounting, Wheeling Jesuit College

Professional and Community Involvement

Member—American and Pennsylvania Institutes of Certified Public Accountants and the Institute of Internal Auditors

Member—Schneider Downs SEC Practice Group

Director of Technical Matters—Schneider Downs Assurance Technical Committee

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Do you have a hobby or personal passion?
Several years ago, I gave up chasing the little white ball around the golf course and was introduced to shot-gunning. It became a family sport and I now enjoy shooting clays, skeet and hunting over my two bird dogs, Tango and Diesel.

Who was your role model?
I really don’t have a role model. Nobody is perfect…rather, I look for the best in people and try to live my life by demonstrating those same attributes.

What was your childhood dream?
As a child, I figured I’d join the Marines – then I realized there was too much cardio involved!

If you could go back in time, what advice would you give your college self?
You can’t do it all on your own. Most situations involve being part of a team. Know your strengths, respect the opinion of others and always insist on doing the right thing.

What is the best or most interesting thing about your career?
At the beginning of my career, I learned a lot about public accounting while at a national firm. I learned more about the business and the value of good relationships when I came to Schneider Downs.

Do you have a “motto?”
The only person you need to be better than is the person you were yesterday.

When you have an hour of free time, what do you like to do?
I have two bird dogs that I love to run and point – so I take them to the fields. There is very little I find more satisfying than watching them work.

Do you have advice for young professionals?
True wealth happens with persistence, perseverance and the drive to be the best at what you do.

Our Thoughts On

FEATURED

Big Problem: Cybersecurity Defenses Compromised By Employees’ Passwords


Big Thinking: Significant Updates To The Cybersecurity Environment.

Shareholder ERIC WRIGHT has been involved with Information Technology with Schneider Downs since 1983 and oversees the firm’s thriving Technology Consulting and IT Audit & Compliance practices. Through this role, Eric brings extensive experience in assessing IT infrastructure and identifying cybersecurity risk and exposure.
One of our clients felt fairly good about their existing cybersecurity defenses. But they were still afraid of the unknown and newer cyber attack techniques. Through our regular audit procedures, we inquired about their current cyber controls and their confidence in withstanding an attack. We then performed a network penetration test which simulates an external adversary hacking their network. This procedure identified the client's unknown weaknesses in their defenses through a live test. “Within 48 hours, we were able to guess the passwords of close to 10% of their employees, effectively giving us VPN access to their corporate network and certain employee utilities, like email.” Eric said. "We also found that their corporate intranet site was visible over the internet and susceptible to login via the bad passwords. After identifying these issues, we worked with the client to make significant changes to their environment to make it harder for an attacker to break in." 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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