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See you at MBAC!

Katie Gabriel, CPA | May 2021 Footnote

Editor's note: Updated April 30, 2021

Following winter and a questionable start-and-stop of spring, it’s refreshing to see the greening of our world, flowers blooming and, usually, experiencing a return to the Minneapolis Convention Center.

Why the convention center? Because that’s where, in non-pandemic times, I attend one of my favorite MNCPA events of the year: the Management & Business Advisers Conference. This year, of course, the event will be held virtually June 21–23. I’d love if you joined me!

I’ve attended MBAC for more than a decade and it is my favorite way to stock up on CPE. The conference is conveniently positioned right before the June 30 CPE deadline and it has so much to offer in terms of content and networking. It’s the one time of year that I’m guaranteed to catch up with some of my former colleagues from public accounting, and reconnect with clients and friends in the industry. The energy between sessions and over the lunch hour is fantastic. My company has been a long-standing sponsor of the conference, so I have had the added benefit of visiting with people in our booth who want to catch up and collect out latest swag.

The event will look a little different again this year in a virtual setting, but know that the content will continue to be top-notch. The MNCPA staff and MBAC Task Force take great care in designing a conference that is relevant to address the issues that CPAs are dealing with today and in the future. I know many inactive CPAs who attend this conference because they value the content so much.

MBAC is typically a two-day conference offering 16 CPE credits, but in this virtual environment, the conference has expanded to three days with as many as 21 CPE hours available. MNCPA members save $150 by registering before May 21.

Plenty for all

Conference favorites Leah Donti, Tommy Stephens and Mark Sellner return this year to share their wisdom. Geno Fragnito, MNCPA director of government relations, and MNCPA member Dan Kidney will have a policy discussion, covering the American Rescue Plan Act. There will also be several auditing-related sessions through the MNCPA’s partnership with The Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA).

I’m excited to hear former AICPA chair Kimberly Ellison-Taylor speak about addressing racism and unconscious bias. The two other keynote speakers are Anirban Basu, who will provide an economic update, and Bret Hood, who will talk about COVID-19 and fraud. As a bonus, you can read a preview of MBAC in this Footnote because several speakers authored articles related to their topics.

In normal years, the networking at MBAC is second to none. With more than 800 professionals in attendance, you are bound to bump into a past co-worker, client, friend or mentor. There is still networking and interaction available on a virtual basis. You can message attendees through the conference app or connect during the breaks and happy hour. There are also opportunities to engage with the conference partners and sponsors. The MNCPA has mastered the technology to host virtual events, even at this scale, so attendees can get the most from their front row seat.

I hope you’ll join me from the comfort of your home for virtual MBAC. Head to for more information and to register.


Katie Gabriel, CPA
Chair, MNCPA board of directors