A Chattanooga CPA with Johnson, Hickey & Murchison, Certified Public Accountants, Cleyta Andrews has announced her retirement after 30 years of serving many of the Chattanooga area’s leading nonprofits, municipalities and small businesses.
Beginning her career with JHM in 1982, Ms. Andrews has focused on corporate and individual accounting, auditing and tax services and is a licensed CPA in Tennessee and Georgia. She has been equally focused on handling her professional relationships with a personal touch. She is ready, she says, for some serious travel and grandchildren time.
"Cleyta is so well loved, she has numerous long-standing business relationships,” said fellow JHM partner Dean Krech. “She prides herself on that. Her personal connection to clients has served as a role model to me. She is also a great advisor to people in our firm in various divisions and in various capacities. She has such a tremendous background."
“I am going to miss my clients on a day-to-day basis,” Ms. Andrews said. “I am a part of my clients, and they feel like I care. My clients e-mail me at home as well as the office; they call me in the evening and on weekends. They just call when they need me. In fact, most of them know that if they need me in the future, for advice or just to talk, I am only a phone call away,” she said.
Ms. Andrews, a Cleveland resident, said she will not only miss being involved in business plans and business responsibilities with clients, but she will also miss the relationships with co-workers at JHM.
“They’re really more friends than co-workers,” she said. Among them are Jeff Durham, the firm’s managing partner, and administrator Sharon Karwisch, both of whom were at the firm when Ms. Andrews reported for duty in 1982.
Ms. Andrews did not start her college career at UT-Knoxville until age 30. She received her B.S. in accounting there and joined JHM in her mid-30s. She achieved partnership status within a dozen years. The mother of three daughters, she said, “My youngest child was age five when I started here, and now my youngest grandchild is age seven.”
Originally from Asheville, N.C., Ms. Andrews and her husband of 47 years, Warren, have five grandchildren. They will get even more of her attention with her retirement.
In a letter announcing her retirement to her clients, Ms. Andrews wrote, “We want to continue to be active in our church (First Baptist of Cleveland) and volunteer with a few nonprofits that are close to our hearts. To celebrate our retirement, we are planning a trip to Yosemite National Park in California.”
Since its founding in 1977, JHM Certified Public Accountants has grown to specialize in accounting, auditing and tax services to nonprofit organizations. Additionally the firm serves a diverse range of business clients throughout the Southeast Tennessee/North Georgia region, ranging from small start-ups to large corporations, with a significant concentration of clients in the construction, medical, nonprofit/governmental and assisted housing industries.