Louise Cochrane
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Intuit® Tax Council Profile: Louise Cochrane

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Welcome to another profile in an ongoing series of Intuit® Tax Council member profiles. I sat down with Louise Cochrane, CPA, owner of LF. Cochrane & Associates in Alameda, CA, to learn more about her practice and her commitment to the Tax Council.

Scott Cytron: Tell our readers about your practice.

Louise Cochrane: I have been a tax-focused CPA for the past 11 years, and seven years prior to that, I had experience in internal audit, audit, and general accounting. I also offer tax advisory services to women who own businesses.

SC: How has advisory benefitted your practice?

LC: I have greater control of my schedule. The year is more consistent now than when I was strictly offering tax compliance.

SC: Your firm’s tagline is “CPA for Women Business Owners.” How did you come to create a practice like this? What was your inspiration?

LC: One of the phrases I hate the most is, “A woman needs to have a job like she doesn’t have a family, and have a family like she doesn’t have a job.” This just isn’t true. I am a mom of three and I own a business. There isn’t an exact balance, but I have found ways to make sure when there is a lot of hustle and little chill. I know there will be time very soon when I will have a lot of chill and little-to-no hustle.

SC: Why is the the Tax Council important to the profession?

LC: Tax Council allows me to be a sounding board, contributor, and collaborator to support my peers and my clients. Intuit ProConnect™ Tax, Lacerte® Tax, and QuickBooks® Online are very powerful tools. I have been using Lacerte since I was 8 years old!

SC: What kind of Intuit software do you use right now?

LC: ProConnect Tax and QuickBooks Online.

SC: What was your very first job?

LC: Pre-college, in my dad’s tax practice and HVAC company.  My father is a serialpreneur; I learned a lot about running a business ever since I was 8 years old. During college, I had an internship at AIG doing internal audit right when Sarbanes-Oxley was enacted, then after college, I held an auditor position with a firm that specialized in unions, employee benefit plans, and not-for-profits.

SC: How can tax professionals keep up with all the changes in tax laws and regulations?

LC: Masterminds are amazing. I also lean on the California Society of CPAs and CPE providers to provide education and networking events to keep up to date.

SC: f you were stranded on a desert island with access to just one kind of technology, what would it be, and why would you want it?

LC: A movie streaming service. I love movies, so as long as I have a favorite beverage and a movie in hand, I am content!

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