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Professionals, Businesses Honored for Commitment to Women in Finance

The American Society of Women Accountants (ASWA), a professional organization to advance the interests of women in accounting and finance, announced the winners of the 2003 Balance Awards: Celebrating the Dimensions of Success (TM). The awards recognize individual and company achievement in demonstrating a commitment to work/life balance and the concerns of women in the accounting and finance professions. Temporary staffing firm Accountemps sponsored the awards.

"The 2003 Balance Awards celebrate the innovative and successful work/life initiatives that individuals and companies are implementing across the country," said Laura Skoff, executive director of ASWA. "ASWA recognizes these exemplary leaders in the accounting and finance professions who have made balancing career and life a priority."

Three women were presented with individual awards. The President###s Award winner was identified by the ASWA national president; the Achievement Award winner was nominated by an ASWA chapter; and the Woman of the Year Award winner was nominated by an individual ASWA member, chapter or organization. Five businesses were also recognized for their contributions to the professional advancement of women in accounting.

The Woman of the Year award is presented to an individual who has distinguished herself in the finance profession, demonstrated sensitivity to the concerns of women within the profession and promoted work/life balance. Mary Bennett, a partner at Crowe Chizek & Co. LLC in South Bend, Ind., led the effort to establish a group within her company to offer women flexible work arrangements. Additionally, Bennett is the initiator and champion of a firmwide Women Into Leadership (WIL) initiative that focuses on the critical issues facing women in accounting firms today, such as work/life balance, visibility and support, and career development and advancement.

The Company of the Year award is presented to the firm that has distinguished itself in the financial profession, demonstrated sensitivity to the concerns of women within the profession and established work/life balance options for its employees. This year###s winner, Deloitte & Touche, has developed work/life balance programs to help its employees meet the challenges of arranging for childcare, attending to family needs and pursuing outside interests. These include

flexible work arrangements, parental leave, adoption assistance and reimbursement, elder care consultations, mortgage assistance, employee assistance and paid time-off programs.

Below is a complete list of winners of the 2003 Balance Awards:

Woman of the Year Award: Mary Bennett

National President###s Award: Kym Anderson, CPA

Achievement Award: Constance Lund, CPA, FLMI

Accounting Firm Awards:

0-100 employees: PCS Audit

101-500 employees: Kennedy & Coe, LLC

500+ employees: Plante & Moran, PLLC

Allied Industry Award: Profitstar

Company of the Year Award: Deloitte & Touche