Denise Rigli, CPA

Audit and Assurance

With discomfort comes growth.

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Meet Denise

Denise has over twenty years of Big Four experience in public accounting and professional services. She specializes in SOC 1, SOC 2 and custom attestation for financial services, fintech and technology companies. Her experience extends from very mature companies to small start-ups that are beginning the journey to SOC compliance.

She spent the first eight years of her career extensively focused on external
audits of public and private companies and had first-hand experience in the initial adoption of SOX 404. Since then, she has worked both in the external audit and in the internal audit/risk and controls. She has a strong accounting background coupled with process and control experience that provides solid operational knowledge and insights. She also has experience is designing, implementing and testing of controls as well as developing risk-based audit approaches.

Prior to joining Armanino, Denise began her career at PwC and was most recently a managing director in the risk assurance practice in San Francisco. 

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Professional History


  • California Society of Certified Public Accountants (CalCPA)


  • Financial Women of San Francisco – Board member


  • Whitworth University


  • PwC


Q. What was it that drew you to Armanino?
Armanino’s entrepreneurial approach really drew me in. Rather than just offering the usual services, we take it a step further by asking what they really need and crafting a solution tailored to them. We’ve really figured out new ways to enhance the experience of our clients.
Q. What do you predict the future will look like for clients in the industries you serve?
So much more is going to become digital. Companies will have new systems and technology in place to take care of the day-to-day functions so the minds of their people can be used in a new way, a way they’ll feel challenged. Tech will certainly disrupt business but if they accept the change, it will lead to future success and more fulfilled employees.
Q. What is the toughest decision you have ever made?
Going back to work after having my first child was tough! My husband decided to stay home with him while I went back. I quickly learned I needed to split my time and set boundaries. Three kids later, I’m so happy that my kids have a strong female role model to look up to and a very special relationship with their dad.
Q. Describe your work style.
I’m a team player. I don’t see a hierarchy when a deadline is coming because I want to be involved and help wherever I can to keep us on track. I also love teaching and coaching. I find joy in guiding my team rather than giving them the answers so they can truly understand what they’re doing and use that knowledge in the future. I’m so proud when they bring me a problem and a solution. My team members are smart and can also offer a different perspective that benefits our clients.
Q. If you could pass on a nugget of wisdom to aspiring accountants or consultants, what would that be?
Look at your calendar and set aside 20% of your time for something that will challenge you. 80% can be your happy space where you’re comfortable and know what you’re doing, but that 20% is where you’ll really grow. You’ll be incrementally adding when others are standing still.
Q. What do you love most about your work?
Our full-time job is to help others by solving a puzzle. Sometimes the answer is right there and other times it’s complex and we spend days, weeks or months helping our clients find the solution.
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