Accounting Alumnus of the Year: Tom McGee '89
As vice chairman of Deloitte LLP, Tom McGee ’89 is regarded as one of the most successful accounting alums from LMU. He oversees the operational management of the firm, supervises critical strategic projects and heads up the Merger & Acquisition Services practice. Along with these responsibilities comes a jam-packed schedule filled with meetings, conference calls, media appearances and cross-country travel. Yet when it comes to family and important personal matters, Tom always makes room on his calendar.
When he found out he was selected as the 2015 LMU Accounting Alumnus of the Year, there was never a doubt in his mind he wouldn’t attend the Accounting Society Spring Banquet to accept his award. Tom, who currently resides in Basking Ridge, NJ with wife Charlene and daughters Kelsey and Emma, welcomed the opportunity to return to Los Angeles and reconnect with his alma mater.
“I am extremely humbled and incredibly honored to receive this award,” said Tom during his acceptance speech. “It’s especially exciting to see some familiar faces in the crowd like former faculty and classmates – many of whom I haven’t seen or talked to since graduation.”
In front of over 200 students, faculty, alumni and industry professionals (including his daughter, two brothers, and nephew who’s a current LMU student), Tom spent the first half of his speech gushing over his children’s accomplishments and crediting his older brother for inspiring him to pursue accounting as a profession. It was refreshing to witness someone with so much career success and power talk openly and honestly about his immense love and gratitude toward family.
“It is most fitting that Tom McGee was honored as the 2015 LMU Accounting Alumnus of the Year,” said Accounting Professor George Dasaro. “His success, work ethic, love of family and service to others make him a perfect role model for our accounting students. We take great pride in Tom’s accomplishments.”
In his speech, Tom encouraged accounting students and soon-to-be graduates to take risks, follow their passions, find work that excites them and give back to those in need. He told them to always remember to smile, especially when times are most challenging, and noted that people want to be around positive people.
“The three things I love most about working in the accounting profession are the people, the challenging work and having a job that really matters,” said Tom. “Being a part of the LMU family is something of which I am very proud.”
He ended by reminding everyone to stay connected to their alma mater. In 2013, Tom and his wife started an endowed scholarship fund for accounting students to lessen the financial burden of an LMU education.
During his 25 years with Deloitte, Tom has held a variety of regional, national and global leadership roles including deputy CEO for the U.S. firm, national managing partner of Deloitte Growth Enterprise Services, chief of staff of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (DTTL) and secretary of the DTTL Executive.
He has served numerous mid-market public and private companies as well as some of Deloitte’s largest clients including New Mountain Capital, Energy Capital Partners, DIRECTV, Hearst Entertainment, Berkshire Partners, Dole Food Company, Kingston Technology, Nissan, Office Depot and Toshiba.
Tom is also active in numerous civic, charitable and academic organizations. He currently serves on the boards of Covenant House International and the New York Catholic Foundation, as well as the Finance Council of the Archdiocese of New York and the LMU Board of Regents.
Tom has earned respect and admiration from his colleagues who believe wholeheartedly in his leadership capabilities. Looking back, he feels that without the education and opportunities he received from LMU, his life and career could have ended up much different.
“In my wildest dreams, I never would’ve imagined I’d be where I am today, and I definitely know my former professors didn’t think I would be,” joked Tom. “It just goes to show that anything is possible with hard work, perseverance and a strong support system in place.”