South Florida managing partner and Partnership Board member to become CEO on August 1, 2022
CHICAGO — The Grant Thornton LLP Partnership Board has named Seth Siegel, 49, as the firm’s CEO-elect. Siegel will succeed Grant Thornton’s current CEO, Brad Preber, when Preber retires on July 31, 2022 after almost two decades in leadership roles at the firm.
The firm’s Partnership Board appointed Siegel, a longtime leader at Grant Thornton, following a comprehensive succession planning and search process. His appointment was subsequently ratified by the firm’s partners and principals. His term as CEO will begin on August 1, 2022.
Siegel is an experienced leader who has spent more than 25 years with Grant Thornton. He currently serves as the managing partner for South Florida, which includes offices in Miami and Fort Lauderdale. He also currently serves on the Grant Thornton Partnership Board.
“Seth is the ideal person to lead our firm during a time of rapid change in our profession,” said Jim Wittmer, chairman of the Partnership Board at Grant Thornton. “He combines a deep understanding of the challenges our clients face with a focused vision for our future that will accelerate our growth and empower our people to deliver the value and quality our clients expect and deserve.”
Siegel says he is looking forward to steering the firm as its professionals collaborate to help clients navigate the future — and thrive.
“At Grant Thornton, we believe in making business more personal and building trust into every result,” said Siegel. “I intend to do just that as CEO, focusing in equal parts on how we serve clients and the value we deliver to them. My goal is to lead our team in helping our clients solve the issues of today while preempting the business challenges of tomorrow.”
Siegel joined Grant Thornton in 1996 and became a partner in 2006, having briefly left the firm in the late 1990s to work as a controller and a registered representative in the financial-services sector. He served as Grant Thornton’s Florida Audit practice leader from 2012 to 2019, with operational responsibility for the five offices in the state. In the role, he expanded the practice area and achieved exceptional revenue growth and profitability for Grant Thornton, all while maintaining excellent quality. Siegel previously led Grant Thornton’s Florida Real Estate, Construction and Hospitality industry group.
During Siegel’s time at Grant Thornton, he has also served on the firm’s Audit Quality Advisory Council, providing practical and objective advice to ensure Grant Thornton consistently delivers high-quality audit services to the marketplace. Furthermore, he served as a member of the inaugural Grant Thornton Experience Leadership Council, which helped the firm’s CEO and Senior Leadership Team shape strategic and operational decisions across all service lines and geographies.
Siegel received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Florida Atlantic University. He is a licensed certified public accountant (CPA) in Florida and a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the Florida Institute of Certified Public Accountants (FICPA).
He is a member of the Florida Atlantic University School of Accounting Advisory Board, and he previously served as the board’s president. He is currently on the board of directors and is a member of the Audit Committee for the Joe DiMaggio Children’s Hospital Foundation and the Memorial Hospital Foundation.
“Seth’s proven commitment to our firm and the communities we serve speaks to his unparalleled passion for people and for our business,” added Wittmer. “And, on behalf of the Partnership Board, I would also express our deep appreciation to Brad Preber for his exceptional leadership since becoming CEO in 2019. He steered our firm with clarity and courage at a critical time.”
Preber stepped into the CEO role only a few months before the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic and, despite the challenges, led the firm to deliver record-breaking business performance and profitability. He also led the firm to achieve a number of organizational and growth milestones, while accelerating the firm’s work on diversity, equity and inclusion (DE&I) initiatives and building the firm’s environment, sustainability and governance (ESG) framework.
“My passion has always been for servant leadership,” said Preber. “I have strived to serve our clients, our people and our communities throughout my career at the firm, including my time as CEO. I know Seth shares my stalwart commitment to the firm, and I look forward to watching him bring his exceptional talents to the CEO post.”
Siegel added that he admires the advancements made during Preber’s tenure, and he believes the future of Grant Thornton has never been brighter.
“Our firm will always strive to take care of our people and be there for our clients,” Siegel said. “I think that unwavering commitment is exactly what businesses need right now.”
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