- Certified Public Accountant
- Certified Internal Auditor*
- Estate Administration & Trust Administration
- Notary Public
Professional Certifications & Memberships
- Licensed NC CPA 1/2006 No. 31877
- Certified Internal Auditor 5/2007 No. 69373
- Member, Institute of Internal Auditors
- Member, North Carolina Association of CPAs
- 2011 MVP Award Winner, Young Professionals Network, Wellness Committee, BCBSNC
- Winner of 4 Blue All-Star Awards for outstanding contribution to SAS 70, State & FEP, BCBS
- Recipient of Spot Award for leadership initiative for 2008 SAS 70 project success, BCBS
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Kenan-Flagler Business School
Master of Accounting, May 2004
Honors/Organizations: Wall Street Journal Award for Most Outstanding Student in Business School, Golden Chain Honor Society (Vice-President), Joseph M. Bryan Four Year Merit Scholarship Awarded by Bryan School Of Business
University of North Carolina at Greensboro
Bachelor of Science Cum Laude, Finance & Marketing, Minor in Dance, May 2000
Walls Law Firm, Director of Estate Administration (February 2014 – May 2016)
Manning, Fulton & Skinner P.A., Estate Administration Paralegal (April – December 2013, part-time)
Prepare all documentation for estates to be probated in court, and all federal and state tax forms involved in the estate administration process. Maintain working knowledge of N.C. estate administration, tax, and probate law.
BB&T Bank (September 2012 – January 2013)
Senior Internal Auditor, Insurance Division
Conduct risk-based operational and human resources audits of BB&T’s Insurance subsidiaries including: planning, scoping, developing the test plan, organizing, conducting testing and making recommendations. Perform SOX (Sarbanes-Oxley) controls testing.
Cenduit (February 2012 – April 2012)
Financial Analyst (March 2012 – April 2012)
Assisted CFO and Finance Department with preparation for external audit.
Office Manager (February 2012 – March 2012)
Organized office of 40+ employees, documented procedures and trained new Office Manager.
Blue Cross Blue Shield North Carolina (December 2005 – February 2012)
Senior Risk Advisor (January 2010 – February 2012)
Identify, assess and consult with management in mitigating organizational & financial risks via the following:
Enterprise Risk Management (ERM): Consulted with VP level Risk Leads to ensure the most threatening risks to the business are being mitigated. Facilitated sessions of the annual Enterprise Risk Assessment (ERA).
Financial Reporting Risk Management (FRRM): Assisted process owners in preparing for and complying with the NAIC’s (National Association of Insurance Commissioners) MAR (Model Audit Rule) annual Attestation, which is a SOX-like regulation for insurers. Successfully facilitated CEO & CFO walkthroughs of 2 high risk, financially significant processes. Conducted walkthroughs of 8 high risk processes to ensure accuracy of documented risks & controls; made recommendations for improvement. Provided consulting to other areas as requested.
Enterprise Business Continuity (EBC): Facilitated development and implementation of business continuity and disaster recovery plans.
Enterprise Risk Committee (ERC): Coordinated and participated in meetings on business and industry risks with Directors and VPs. Documented meeting discussions, results & action plans with precision to meet high standards required for potential public record.
Advised management to develop corrective action plans to reduce the root cause of audit findings before they happened. Researched and resolved issues by proactive requests.
Senior Operational Auditor / Operational Auditor (December 2005 – December 2009)
Successfully coordinated between internal audit, the business areas, and external auditors to improve the efficiency of the SAS 70 / SSAE 16 audit and to produce the report accurately and on schedule. Performed audit testing for the SAS 70 / SSAE 16, reviewed workpapers, was responsible for managing the project and leading the team to meet deadlines with minimal supervision. Developed and maintained a SAS 70 / SSAE 16 CBT.
Conducted operational audits of Key Controls, discovered audit findings, wrote audit reports and validated completion of resulting corrective action plans. Coordinated audit projects for the NC State Health Plan and Federal Employee Program (FEP). Trained team member to assume FEP audit coordination responsibilities.
PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, Assurance Associate (July 2004 – December 2005)
Audited financial statements of large publicly and privately held businesses & non-profits in pharmaceutical, manufacturing, healthcare, technology, and banking industries. Performed inventories, substantive testing, analytical procedures, client interviews, SOX testing, and financial statement presentation.
Manning, Fulton & Skinner P.A., Estate Administration Paralegal (March 2002 – May 2003)
Prepared all documentation for estates to be probated in court, and all federal and state tax forms involved in the estate administration process. Maintained working knowledge of N.C. estate administration, tax, and probate law.
B2B Exclusive, Business Development Manager (September 2001 – February 2002)
Started as a lead generation representative and promoted to manager within 7 weeks.
Performed outside sales efforts and cold calling. Responsible for company marketing and PR.
ImageNet, Marketing Manager (June 2000 – August 2001)
Coordinated advertising, PR activities, direct mail, tradeshows, and seminars, for computer networking and systems integration company. Created and distributed press releases and new company newsletter. Helped president write firm’s marketing plan.
More about Ashley
I am trained dancer, from the age of 4 years old. I took years and years of: Ballet, tap, jazz, gymnastics, modern, swing, salsa, hip hop, etc. I was frequently asked to teach, but never wanted to come up with my own choreography. When my hip hop teacher started teaching Zumba (which is like Latin hip-hop aerobics), I learned that the company sends you their choreography. My teacher hurt her ankle for a few weeks and asked me to lead the class from the front, while she sat on the side and cued the next moves with her arms. I realized that I could lead the class! I got licensed and have enjoyed teaching Zumba on the side, since 2010. I also love traveling to exotic locations, so it’s fun to use music from all over the world in class and “go on a trip around the world” in class!
Why did you become a Paralegal after being a CPA? I wasn’t really looking for a job in the legal field, but it just happened. The job seemed like a good fit for my math / finance background and degree, as there are a lot of numbers, accountings and taxes involved with Estate Administration. I happened to know an attorney who needed an Estate Administration Paralegal in 2002 and her firm trained me for over a year. Since I was young and wanted to be upwardly mobile, being a paralegal seemed like a dead-end job, unless I wanted to go to 3 years of law school. I was struggling with what to do with my career and a good friend suggested that I become an accountant, as I very much enjoyed personal finance and keeping track of my spending. I thought that sounded like a great idea, so I left the job to go back to school to get my Master’s in Accounting at UNC. I became a CPA and was an auditor at PwC, BCBSNC and BB&T for around 8+ years. I also became one of the first people in the BCBSNC Internal Audit Department to become a CIA (Certified Internal Auditor). But, I found that being an auditor lacked the feeling of making a difference and helping people. I always remember my time at the law firm as my most favorite job. Almost 10 years after I left the first law firm, I went back to that firm for almost another year. I’ve worked at a few other firms, since then, and have always enjoyed using my quantitative skills in my work helping people through a difficult time and on interesting and complex tasks as an Estate Administration Paralegal.
How many people did you spy on while in the employ of the CIA*?