Audit Partner, Jeff Yennie, Earns CVA Certification

Congratulations are in order! KT Audit Partner, Jeff Yennie, has completed the demanding process of obtaining his Certified Valuation Analyst (CVA) certification.

From the National Association of Certified Valuators and Analysts:

What is a CVA?

The CVA designation is an indication to the business, professional, and legal communities that recipients have met the rigorous standards of professionalism, expertise, objectivity, and integrity in the field of business valuation, financial consulting and litigation, and related consulting disciplines.

How can a CVA Help You?

  • Accurate Value Determination
    • The result of an inaccurate value determination, regardless of whether it is high or low, generally leads to undesirable consequences. For instance, if the value is too high, estate taxes will be too high; savvy investors or prospective buyers will usually disregard a value that appears too high. If the value is too low, you can be sure savvy investors or prospective buyers will recognize it and take advantage. Likewise, if you are on the other side of the dispute in a dissenting shareholder action or divorce, you certainly want to know you are receiving an accurate value for your interest.
  • Careful Analysis
    • Determining the true value of a business enterprise requires a careful analysis of two primary components that make up value: tangible assets such as real estate, machinery, and furniture used by the business; and various intangible assets such as business or personal goodwill. Intangible assets might also include customer lists, trademarks, copyrights, distribution rights, a superior management team, non-compete agreements, physical location, special processes, and name recognition.
  • Understanding the Business
    • To properly value a business enterprise, the CVA must acquire a thorough understanding of every aspect of a company’s dynamics, including management capabilities, company strengths, weaknesses and vulnerabilities, the competitive environment, overall expectations for the marketplace, and future economic prospects for the industry and the economy in the region and as a whole. All of these elements affect the risk of ownership in a particular enterprise, and risk directly impacts value. Additionally, the valuator must analyze the inherent financial health of the enterprise and its future profit potential.
  • Sorting Through a Complex Process
    • After a thorough analysis of all the company’s dynamics and its financial health, the CVA must select the most appropriate methodology from among the many accepted by the valuation industry and apply a series of calculations and formulas to arrive at the ultimate conclusion of value. Overall, the process is highly complex and requires a significant amount of time. Indeed, this is what is required to determine the true economic value of a privately owned business enterprise, and this is what a CVA brings to your table.

To learn more about KT’s Advisory/Valuation services.

To request KT’s Advisory/Valuation services.

February 16, 2024

Free Webinar – Compensation Trends & Benefits Benchmarking

KT has partnered with USI Insurance Solutions to offer a free webinar series for our clients. These webinars are prepared by USI industry experts and focus on recurring client needs/questions regarding compensation and benefits. There is no cost to attend, and sessions will typically run one hour with Q&A.

2024 Compensation Trends & Benefit Benchmarking

Thursday, February 22nd from 10-11am (Mountain)

“As we enter 2024, we are also entering a new era of compensation. A tight labor market, new legislation around pay transparency and artificial intelligence are a few topics challenging the way organizations design and execute compensation programs. This webinar will focus on topics in both compensation and employee benefits that are challenging employers during this pivotal time.”


February 5, 2024

New Partners Named at KT

KT announces the addition of new Partners, Carrie Christensen, CPA, MBA, and Brady Larsen, CPA, effective January 1st. Both Christensen and Larsen work in the Tax Department in the Rapid City office.

Carrie J. Christensen has over 15 years of experience helping clients with various tax issues and uses her experience to guide them and provide expert advice. She specializes in tax preparation and consulting for clients in the real estate, hospitality, and medical industries. Additionally, Carrie leads KT’s team that specializes in assisting clients with resolving IRS issues.

Carrie is a motivated team member at KT and is excited to keep growing in her journey with the firm. As she matures in her career, she is excited to share her knowledge and experience with younger staff members and help guide them in their careers.

When she is not at work, Carrie enjoys spending time with her husband, two daughters, and mini-Aussie. She also enjoys running, yoga, reading, brunches with girlfriends, and spending time outdoors.

Brady K. Larsen is experienced in small business and individual tax but specializes in agriculture. He grew up farming and ranching and connects very well with the agricultural community. His passion is agriculture, and he gets to be part of that community through his work with farmers and ranchers.

Brady grew up on his family’s farm in Colome, SD (Go Cowboys!), but now calls Rapid City home, along with his wife and two kids. His hobbies include putting up hay with antique tractors, working in his shop, taking his kids horseback riding, watching football on Sundays, and doing anything outdoors.

January 2, 2024

2023 Construction Industry Lunch & Learn

KT will be hosting our annual Construction Industry Lunch & Learn from 12-1pm on Wednesday, December 13th. Our presenters will be returning from the AICPA Construction Industry conference with the latest updates on legislation, cash management, and the changing labor landscape. RSVP sooner than later as space is limited.

November 14, 2023

Honoring the Veterans at KT

Thank you for serving and protecting this great nations of ours!

Heather Grace

I served from 1994 – 1997, Army, Specialist (E4). I was stationed in Fort Gordon, GA and Ft. Bad Aibling Germany during my time. My husband served from 1981 – 1996, Army, Sargent (E5), and was in Desert Storm War. We have been married 26 years in January 2024.

Kate Schmidt

I was in the Army, for 2.5 years, did my basic training at Ft Leonard Wood, MO and was stationed at Hunter Army Airfield in Savannah GA in support of the 82nd Airborne Division after basic training. I was enlisted as an 88M MOS which is transportation but ended up working most of the time as a clerk for the 1st Sergeant and Commander of the company I was attached to, 416 Transportation.

My husband was the first sergeant’s driver and had been there 2 months when I arrived. We were married at the base chapel nine months after we met and have been married for 30 years.

Dustin Fuhriman

I was U.S. Navy.  I made rank E-5 (in the navy that I was an SK2(SW)).  I served 4 Years. I was stationed in San Diego and did two deployments to the gulf, one in 2003 and another in 2005.  I did Logistics.

November 10, 2023

New Senior Associates Named at Ketel Thorstenson, LLP

KT is pleased to announce the promotion of Stacey Laub to Senior Associate in the Accounting Services department, the promotions of Luke Bates, Kelsey Cropsey, and Erin Kremers to Senior Associate in the Audit department, and Kale Lytle, Angie McDonnell, Brian Pereira, and Melanie Thiele to Senior Associate in the Tax department.

Stacey Laub holds an associate degree from Black Hills State University and joined KT in 2021. She enjoys working with clients and learning about their business. Stacey specializes in the medical and hospitality industries.

Luke Bates, CPA, joined KT in 2021 after getting his BS in Professional Accountancy from Black Hills State University. He works in the audit department performing audits, reviews, and compilations. He specializes in employee benefit plans, and the hospitality and construction industries.

Kelsey Cropsey joined KT in 2021 after getting her BS in Professional Accountancy from Black Hills State University. She specializes in audits for non-profits, foundations, and employee benefit plans.

Erin Kremers, CPA, joined KT in 2021 after getting her BS in Professional Accountancy from Black Hills State University. She specializes in the government and non-profit industries, working on the audits for various cities, school districts, and non-profit organizations.

Kale Lytle, EA, joined KT’s Tax department in 2021. He specializes in agricultural tax returns and also assists agriculture clients with their bookkeeping and tax planning. He is part of KT’s Valuation team, assisting with business valuations and present value calculations. Kale obtained his BS and master’s degrees in business administration from Chadron State College.

Angie McDonnell, CPA, attended Black Hills State University and graduated with a BS in Professional Accountancy, Business Administration with an emphasis in Entrepreneurial Studies, and Mass Communications with an emphasis in Photography. She started with KT in 2021. She currently specializes in the agriculture industry and serves as a member of the SD CPA Society’s Young Professionals Advisory Council. Angie works to promote the profession by assisting with recruiting and speaking to students about the accounting field.

Brian Pereira joined KT in 2022. He holds a BS in Accounting and Operations Management from Rhode Island College. He is part of KT’s agriculture and 1040 team and helps train new hires as part of the New Hire Onboard Committee.

Melanie Thiele joined KT in 2021 after graduating from Wayne State College with a BS in Accounting and an MBA. She recently passed the CPA Exam and is waiting for her official certification. Melanie works in the Spearfish office, specializes in the non-profit industry, and is also part of KT’s Staff Development Committee.

August 3, 2023

New Managers Named at Ketel Thorstenson, LLP

KT is pleased to announce the promotion of Linda Horsley to Manager in the Accounting Services department, and the promotions of Wes Hanson, Elijah Houchens, Jordan Jones, and Nick Michael to Manager in the Audit department.

Linda Horsley has worked in the accounting industry since 2002. She assists businesses with compilations of financials, sales tax, payroll processing, payroll tax, quarterly and year-end payroll services, preparation of W-2 forms, Form 1099 reporting, accounts payable, accounts receivable, and tax preparation. Linda specializes in the hospitality and agricultural industries.

Wes Hanson, CPA, joined KT in 2019 after graduating from the University of South Dakota. He specializes in audits of commercial businesses and employee benefit plans, focusing on the hospitality, construction, financial, and retail/manufacturing industries.

Elijah Houchens, CPA, joined the firm as an auditor directly after graduating from the University of South Dakota. He specializes in audits for non-profit organizations, commercial businesses (typically construction), federal grants, and rural electric cooperatives.

Jordan Jones, CPA, assists the audit department with staff development including new employee orientation and leadership and development training. Jordan is a key member of the governmental audit team and enjoys assisting clients with the intricacies of such a specialized accounting framework.

Nick Michael, CPA, joined KT in 2019 after working as a police officer for the Rapid City Police Department. Nick specializes in non-profit and commercial business audits, fraud investigation, and litigation support.

August 2, 2023

New Senior Manager Announced by Ketel Thorstenson

Ketel Thorstenson, LLP announces the promotion of Joei Tieman, CPA to Senior Manager.

With a passion for helping people, Joei is where she is supposed to be, and she gets to share this passion with both coworkers and clients. She strives to help individuals grow within the firm and works towards providing them with a set of tools to help them be successful. Joei enjoys answering client questions and helping grow their business.

Joei started working with Ketel Thorstenson, LLP in 2014 and has grown tremendously in her career since then – and she is not done growing or learning! There are so many moving parts in this profession that she feels like she will always be learning and challenged. Being a leader in the tax department has provided Joei with several responsibilities that allow her to be a part of a firm that is continuing to grow, be a destination employer, and provide top-notch client service.

Joei assists clients with individual tax returns, business tax returns, and serves as a member of the niche group for Agriculture clients. Growing up with a farm/ranching background helps Joei provide great service to these individuals.

Her strong work ethic and passion for people shines through both personally and professionally. Joei is fortunate to have a large extended family and solid foundation of friends. She is married and has three children that she and her husband raised in Sturgis, SD. They enjoy outdoor activities such as riding ATV’s, hunting, lake life, camping, and traveling to new places. Joei also enjoys reading, hiking, shopping, and being present in whatever each day brings.

Joei is a goal setter, and she does a good job at meeting goals that she sets for herself – both personally and professionally. She is always striving to get better and be better. “We all have strengths and weaknesses, and I may talk too much or ask too many questions,” says Joei. “And my kids would agree with that! But it is because I want to learn about someone or something. You should strive to learn something new every day – even if it is something super simple.”

As a Senior Manager, Joei’s responsibilities will include management duties, strategic planning, ensuring a positive client experience, seeking training and education opportunities for staff and clients, and mentoring staff.

June 1, 2023

Staff Promotions Announced by Ketel Thorstenson, LLP

Ketel Thorstenson, LLP announces the promotions of Amanda Dennis to Manager in the Client Accounting Services department, and Catherine Shoun and Jessica Harwood to Senior Associates in the Client Accounting Services department. All three are in the firm’s Rapid City office.

Amanda Dennis has worked in the Client Accounting Services Department since October 2013. Her expertise includes compilation of financial statements, year-end tax forms, sales tax reporting, payroll processing, accounts payable, and accounts receivable. She specializes in the hospitality industry and is a certified QuickBooks Professional Advisor.

Amanda graduated from Black Hills State University with a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration with emphases in Accounting and Management. Outside of work, she enjoys camping, fishing, and spending time with her family and friends.

Catherine Shoun specializes in the hospitality and construction industries and earned her Master of Business Administration degree from National American University.

In her free time, she enjoys hiking, crafts, and “has one teenager left at home that helps keep me on my toes with technology and she laughs at me about it.”

Jessica Harwood has worked in the Client Accounting Services Department since May 2019, and her expertise is in payroll. She earned her Associate degree in accounting from Western Dakota Technical College.

Outside of work, Jessica enjoys fishing, reading, cheering on the Denver Broncos, and playing the Willy Wonka machine at Cadillac Jack’s.

January 16, 2023