IMA Kansas City Fall Conference Speaker Bio / Session Description

Adrian James


Speaker Bio:

Adrian James, Ph.D. is the Chair of Management, Human Resources, and Logistics and an Assistant Professor of Management in the School of Business at Park University. She teaches courses in strategic management, organizational behavior, and managerial development. Dr. James has a passion for maximizing efficiency, productivity, and human capital. She is active in the Parkville and greater Kansas City community where she assists organizations with strategic planning and organizational development. Dr. James has facilitated professional development workshops and retreats both nationally and internationally. In addition to her Ph.D., she holds a MBA, B.S. in Industrial Psychology, and is a Six Sigma Green Belt.

Session Description:

Strategic Management

In this session, we will discuss the finance team’s role in the strategic management process.  We will cover strategic planning and competitive analysis.  Within strategic planning, topics such as vision, mission, and goals as well as planning tools and frameworks will be discussed.  As part of competitive analysis, participants will learn how to consider and leverage environmental and internal forces for the best competitive advantage.

Participants will be actively engaged in the presentation.  They will have the opportunity to apply the concepts discussed to their own organizational demands.  In addition, the session will help prepare participants for section A of the Strategy and Competitive Analysis certificate offered by IMA which includes strategic analysis topics.


Laura Clark Fey


Speaker Bio:

Laura and her team at Fey LLC help organizations develop and implement practical solutions to their unique data privacy and information governance challenges.  Laura is a member of the inaugural class of IAPP Fellows of Information Privacy (FIP), a Certified U.S. and European Information Privacy Professional (CIPP/US/E), and a Certified Information Privacy Manager (CIPM).  The U.S. Department of Commerce and the European Commission have selected Laura as an arbitrator in connection with the EU-U.S. Privacy Shield Framework Binding Arbitration Program.

Session Description:

Lessons Learned from Recent Data Breaches & 10 Critical Steps to Reduce Your Risk

Huge data breaches continue to make headlines.  Billions of personal data records have been breached to date in this year alone (and the year isn’t even over).  Are there any lessons to learn from recent data breaches that may reduce the risks of organizations becoming the next data breach victims?  The answer to that question is yes.  In this presentation, Laura Clark Fey, one of the first 27 U.S. attorneys recognized as Privacy Law Specialists (IAPP) and Principal of Fey LLC, a global data privacy and information governance law firm, will discuss recent data breaches in the news.  For each data breach, she will discuss the amount and types of personal data breached; analyze the causes of the breach; discuss the consequences for the entity that was breached; and provide key lessons to take away from the breach.  She will conclude her presentation by providing recommendations on 10 critical steps organizations can take to lower their risks of becoming the next data breach targets. 


Sandi Weaver


Speaker Bio:

Sandi Weaver is president of Weaver Financial, a fee-only financial planning and investment firm.  She has earned the Chartered Financial Analyst designation, the pinnacle of designations in the investment field. CFAs master complex studies in portfolio management, quantitative analysis, businesses, stocks, bonds, and economics. She is a member of the CFA Institute, and previously worked with an investment management firm serving high net worth individuals.

She is a member of the Missouri Society of CPAs and an active member of their Wealth Management Committee.  She served as the state chair of their Personal Financial Planning Committee, and as chair of the Financial Planning Committee for the Kansas City Chapter.  She is a Certified Financial Planner™ professional.  Since 2009 Sandi has contributed to the Public Awareness Committee of the Financial Planning Association’s Kansas City chapter. 

She graduated magna cum laude from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa.  She has provided expert witness testimony on financial assets in court cases. 

She is published in The Kansas City Star newspaper's financial columns and appears on KCUR’s Up-To-Date public radio show on their financial segments.

Session Description:

Tax and Retirement Planning Strategies

Taxes, money, investments!  Sandi will offer suggestions for small business owners and individuals saving for retirement.  She’ll cover easy pension plans to defer taxes on wages – yours and employees.  LLC’s are trendy but the old S corp still has a nice feature up its sleeve.  Will you get a qualified business income deduction?  Can’t wait to shut down your business and retire?  Please have second thoughts.

We’ll cover how much you’ll need to save for retirement, and the smartest ways to save.  We’ll walk through “tax-shifting” a portfolio to build up the tax-deferred side while bringing down taxable accounts.  If you’ve inherited stock with low cost basis, we’ll discuss some smart uses.  Mutual fund owners will learn how to avoid a year-end tax tsunami and spreadsheet your best options.

Chris Kuehl


Speaker Bio:

Chris is a Managing Director of Armada Corporate Intelligence and one of the co-founders of the company. He has been Armada’s economic analyst and has worked with a wide variety of private clients and professional associations.  He is the Chief Economist for the National Association for Credit Management and the Economic Analyst for the Fabricators and Manufacturers Association.

Chris is the chief editor for the Business Intelligence Brief, publishing and commenting on current national and international economic and political events three times a week. He also makes approximately 100 presentations each year to national, regional, and local businesses and industry associations and several state CPA societies. He is a frequent guest speaker at IMA events throughout our region and spoke at the IMA national conference in San Diego this year. His unique perspectives and coverage of national and international economic topics and events have made Chris an extremely popular and entertaining speaker among accounting and finance professionals around the country.

Chris has a doctorate in Political Economics and advanced degrees in Soviet Studies and Asian Studies and was a professor of international economics and finance for 15 years.

Session Description:

It's Almost 2020: Do You Know Where Your Economy Is?

As the election year nears there will be many politicians either claiming they are behind the strong economy or they will be running away from any signs of a downturn. Where are we really and what gets credit (or blame) for the performance of the economy now and in the future.

Kevin J. McCrary


Speaker Bio:

Special Agent (SA) Kevin J. McCrary graduated from Pittsburg State University in 1982 with a major in accounting, and passed the CPA exam shortly thereafter. SA McCrary has been a “Special Agent Accountant” with the FBI since March 1988, and has successfully conducted scores of investigations involving white collar crime, violent crime, and fugitive apprehension.

During his career, Special Agent (SA) McCrary has held several leadership positions to include being Commander of the Kansas City FBI Violent Crime/Fugitive Task Force, Sniper Team Leader, and Senior Team Leader of the Kansas City FBI Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team.

Major awards earned by SA McCrary include the FBI Combat Theater Award for participation in Operation Enduring Freedom during 2005, being selected the Kansas City Metropolitan Area Crime Commission 2007 Officer of the Year, and the FBI Shield of Bravery, which was awarded to SA McCrary in 2012.

In addition to Kansas City, SA McCrary has served in field offices located at Mobile, Alabama and Dallas, Texas. SA McCrary is now part of a small and unique squad of investigators that conduct “specialized operations”.

SA McCrary is in his 32nd year with the FBI.

Session Description:

Using Accounting Skills in White Collar Crime Investigation

Kevin’s presentation will provide a brief history of the FBI, its mission, and its investigative priorities.  He will discuss what white collar crime (WCC) is, along with possible causes, and why WCC cases need investigators with accounting skills.  The FBI has put in place various enhancements to assist in the investigation of large WCC matters.

Case studies involving the investigation of two separate and different types of WCC and a discussion of why these crimes went undetected will be featured.  The presentation includes a demonstration of covert audio recorded by the FBI during a major investigation along with an interactive discussion of white collar crime.

Kimberly Swanson Church


Speaker Bio:

Kimberly Swanson Church, Ph.D. is an assistant professor of accounting information systems at the University of Missouri Kansas City’s Henry W. Bloch School of Management and has operated several family owned businesses for over 25 years. She holds a Ph.D. in AIS from the University of Arkansas, a MAcc with an emphasis in information systems from Kansas State University and a B.B.A in Accounting from Pittsburg State University. She is the recipient of several national teaching awards, including the Jim Bulloch Award for Innovation in Management Accounting Education, the Mark Chain/FSA Innovation in Graduate Teaching Award, and the national Bea Sanders/AICPA Innovation in Teaching Award Honorable Mention. Kim recently co-authored a Strategic Finance article with fellow IMA-KC member Bob Swisher titled Building Bridges with Universities and serves as an Institute of Management Accountants – KC Chapter Advisory Board member, the IMA student chapter faculty advisor, an IMA campus advocate and an IMA influencer. In her spare time, she is an American Accounting Association (CTLA) national speaker on data analytics and is part of the AICPA training team for the pursuit of an Advanced Placement (AP) Accounting course in high schools.

Session Description:

Using the IMA Management Accounting Framework as a Career Management Tool

Engage in experiential learning to increase awareness of recommended professional competencies. This engaging session allows individuals and small groups to explore competencies to bridge the evolving skills gap for career success. The activities include (1) initial discussion of accounting perceptions, (2) personal SWOT analysis (3) personal assessment of updated IMA competencies, including demonstrative examples, analysis of personal experiences and self-rating of skills, and (4) individual competency development plan for underrated skills.

This experiential learning opportunity benefits participants by increasing awareness of necessary professional competencies using the IMA Management Accounting Framework, improving critical and reflective thinking skills, and developing a plan to take initiative and ownership for acquiring necessary skills for success as an accounting professional and thus, developing a lifelong learning mindset. These activities can be used to enhance annual performance reviews and/or personal professional development.