National Small Business Week
Graf & Company: Certified Public Accountants in Fairfield, Iowa
In 1950, Lewis E. Graf started his own Fairfield accounting business in an office overlooking Central Park. In 1982, the business found a long-term home when the company was built at their present site, 107 East Washington Avenue. Larry Rippey joined the firm in 1979 and became managing partner in 1986. Seven decades later, Graf & Company continues to be a bedrock business in the community. They have served families through decades and multiple generations.
Graf & Company is a full-service accounting firm, offering a broad range of services for business owners, executives, and independent professionals. A large portion of their business is in the agriculture area, but they also handle many small businesses, including payroll. Other services include: Estate Planning, Elder Care Planning, CFO Services, Reviews/ Financial Compilations, Cash Flow Management, Strategic Business Planning, Succession Planning, New Business Formation and Non-Profit Organizations.
On January 1st, 2020, the business welcomed two women as the newest owners; the first in the company’s history. Missi Bain and Jennifer Coleman are no strangers to the business though, as they have each been with the company for ten years or more. Prior to their time at Graf & Co., the women both worked in Jefferson County businesses for most of their careers. Their daughters can be proud of their moms for being a part of this milestone moment for the company. Both women are from the Southeast Iowa area, with roots for Jennifer in the Pekin area, and for Missi in Henry County. Missi handles the accounting and Jennifer manages business development, producing a balanced team approach.
A further sign of the company’s stability is their succession planning. While these two women now run the oversight and day to day operations, Larry Rippey will be around for another five years to help keep the company steady and successful.
Rounding out the staff are Bob Van Nostrand - Senior CPA, Robyn Griffin - Staff Accountant, Darcy Wibstad - Client Services Manager, Barb Withrow - Receptionist, Glenda White - Bookkeeper, and John Rathbun and Bo Northup in Financial Services.
While there have been changes, the company remains stable; keeping the name Graf & Company but with a growth trajectory in mind. “We have room to grow in our present location so once this current pandemic settles down, we will begin looking for ways to grow our firm’s client base and staff,” says Jennifer.
Pictured in the front row: Glenda White, Barb Withrow, Darcy Wibstad, Bo Northup
Pictured in the back row: Bob Van Nostrand, Robyn Griffin, Missi Bain, Larry Rippey, John Rathbun, Jennifer Coleman
The U.S. Small Business Administration has postponed National Small Business Week; new dates will be announced soon. The Fairfield Area Chamber of Commerce would still like to highlight five Fairfield Area businesses this week in celebration of Small Business Week.