Unknown Famous Accountants


Unknown Famous Accountants

Accounting first began in Ancient Mesopotamia. Then accountants worked for temples, tracking taxes paid on sheep and agricultural produce. They used cuniform, a writing practice, to keep receipts. But, there have been many developments and accomplishments since then. Let’s take a look at some notable accountants that changed the game.

1. Mary Addison Hamilton

An Australian feminist, she was underestimated by her peers and surpassed expectations by received the highest mark on her exams and becoming the first female Chartered Public Accountant. She was offered a permanent position in the public sector, which is especially significant because in that time, women were not usually offered jobs in government. She worked as a clerk in the public service, using her skills to train new accountants and assist a number of charitable and not-for-profit organisations.

2. Josiah Wedgwood

If you recognise the name, that’s because he is in fact the founder of Josiah Wedgwood and Sons – the famous Wedgwood china. He created the first reliable system in the 1700’s to track bottom-line costs and profits, and tested it on his own company during economic downturn. His system proved so successful, it even brought to light an embezzlement scam run by his head clerk. Obviously good accounting is undeniably beneficial. Wedgwood is still around today, more successful than ever.

3. John Pierpont Morgan

He was an American financier and banker in the late 1800’s. He dominated corporate finance and industrial consolidation, directing the banking coalition that stopped the panic of 1907 and aiding the banking industry through the 1890’s. John’s global market leading financial services firm still carry’s his name, so successful, that is annually donates $200 million to non-profit organisations. His impact was so significant, that upon his death, the NY Stock Exchange stopped trading until midday.

4. Frank Mason Robinson

Frank started a business with associates called the Pemberton Chemical Company. They were playing with a medicinal formula using coca leaves and kola nuts… do you see where I’m going? Frank eventually coined the name Coca Cola, and even designed the logo written in Spencerian (the Accountants script of the time). So successful was their marketing that they were able to keep the same price of 5c from 1886 to 1959, which was approximately worth $1.20 including inflation.

5. William Welch Deloitte

Deloitte, also a founder of one of the Big 4 accounting firms, was an accountant from London. He began his own business sorting out bankruptcy at a young age. He also became the first independent auditor ever appointed at the Great Western Railway, and invented a system for railway accounts to protect investors from mismanagement of funds. In his time, he was also president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales. He retired a year before his death, as the oldest practicing accountant at the time.

Clearly, accountants have a lot to offer the world, including Bubble Gum (look up Walter Diemer) and Phil Knight – the co-founder of Nike. You never know where an accounting career will lead. Linden offers a Certificate IV in Accounting (FNS40615)… just saying.

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