Mother Knows Best…
One morning over breakfast, a young Raymond Berardinelli’s mother asked him what his plan was after high school. He would be graduating soon and needed a little direction. His mother had always encouraged him to go to college, but Raymond was thinking more along the lines of going to trade school. His plan was to become a heavy equipment operator. Raymond’s mother was always a great source of encouragement to him, and stood by this decision, but she also mentioned she thought he was really good at math and should consider becoming an accountant.
At that time, Raymond wasn’t even sure what an accountant did. But, understanding sometimes mother does know best, Raymond enrolled at St. Francis College (which is now a University) in Loretto, Pennsylvania. He graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting and went to work for the East-Central Division of the United States Army Audit Agency at the Pentagon. He worked there for three years as he prepared to take the exam to become a Certified Public Accountant. The day he received notification he had passed the exam, he submitted his notice to leave work in two weeks. He was leaving the big city to return home and start his career as an accountant.
Home to Raymond is Gallitzin, Pennsylvania. It’s a small town where people work hard and know the value of education. It’s a place that provided Raymond with the confidence he needed to embrace his entrepreneurial spirit and start his own business.
When Raymond first started his accounting business, it was tough to build his clientele. But now, with so many technological advances, Raymond provides accounting services to taxpayers throughout the United States. In fact, he has several clients he’s never even seen. A lot of his clients have retired and relocated, or have relocated for their job. Most of his new business comes from client referrals.
Raymond began his partnership with Drake Software in 2002. He had attended a seminar where he talked with someone who offered a glowing recommendation of Drake, and he felt it would be worth a try. And that decision is one he’s never regretted. Recently, Raymond visited Drake’s headquarters in Franklin, North Carolina, and had the opportunity to meet the people he depends on for his tax software needs. He said, “Not only is Drake the best company I have personally dealt with, it’s the best company I have ever seen!” Raymond has recommend Drake to fellow tax practitioners for many years and will continue to do so.
In addition to tax and accounting services, Raymond offers write-up, payroll, and consulting services for small businesses. And with the recent announcements concerning the expected increase of small business audits, he’s reviving his entrepreneurial spirit to start a new business that will help small business owners maintain their records. Along with his sons, Raymond and Nick, he recently opened SIMPL-e-accounting, Inc. Together, they help small business owners with document storage, deposits, disbursements, payroll, and bank reconciliations. Raymond plans to build this business following Drake Software’s model for superior customer service, and he will depend on Drake for his accounting software needs, too.
The inspiration for SIMPLE-e-accounting came when one of his current clients, a small business owner, faced an audit. He saw first-hand how stressful it was for his client to sort through all of his paperwork and the effect it had on his well-being. Raymond wanted to help and has found a way to help other small business owners avoid the stress audits often bring. He feels SIMPLE-e-accounting will save customers time and money, as well as provide peace of mind as annual reports and supporting documentation will be available to business owners and their tax professionals shortly after the year’s end. In addition,
Simpl-e-accounting will enable tax professionals to offer their business clients year-round accounting services. So, when a dreaded notice of an audit arrives, the paperwork they need will be just an email away.
Raymond considers himself a God-fearing, independent man who loves his family and values all the good things in life. He is very active in his local Lions Club, likes bowling, playing golf in local fundraising tournaments, and taking daily walks. He also enjoys spending time with his granddaughters, Mia and Lilli, and his companion, Carol Ann.
Raymond plans to work as long as he has the ability to do so. It’s hard to believe that a little over 40 years ago, Raymond didn’t know what an accountant did. One of the lessons he’ll never forget is that mothers really do know best.
Ray can be contacted by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.