Paul Peterson, CPA


What may appear to be the safe path or the risky path is not necessarily so.

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Meet Paul

Paul graduated from the University of California, Berkeley, and had eight years of experience with Coopers & Lybrand prior to joining Armanino in 1996. Paul has a wide variety of audit experience including healthcare, not-for-profit organizations, schools, major publicly-held and privately-held corporations and governmental entities. He is the firm's lead technical consulting partner and is responsible for all aspects of the firm's audit quality. He is a member of the California Society of CPAs Accounting Principles & Assurance Services Committee.

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Professional History


  •  Armanino LLP


  • American Institute of Certified Public Accountants
  • California Society of Certified Public Accountants


  • University College, Galway, Ireland


Q. What is it about accounting that first drew your interest?
My stepfather, who was a real estate developer, always told me that good accountants and good lawyers are worth their weight in gold. So I thought it would be an interesting career, and a profession that I could be passionate about pursuing. I also wanted a diversified business exposure which I felt public accounting could provide. It is a very dynamic profession and career. It's constantly changing and every day is different. As a result, it's exciting and something you can be passionate about.
Q. Describe your most memorable Armanino moment:
When we became the fifth largest firm in the Bay Area, just behind the Big Four, making us the largest regional firm in the area and the largest California-based firm. It was the culmination of lots of hard work on behalf of a staff of extremely dedicated and talented individuals.
Q. Make a prediction, describe your vision of the business future.
I expect to see large opportunities in Asia and China and a continued migration of labor out of the domestic economy to places like India in response to the continued availability of competitive sources of labor. Technology will continue to be a major player in making day-to-day business activities more effective and efficient.
Q. Tell us about one of your favorite clients and why you enjoy working with them.
I like clients who are passionate about their business, appreciate the importance of the financial reporting process, and are committed to doing whatever is necessary to make their business operate to its maximum potential.
Q. What's it like working for a company that's been around for so long?
It's great to work for a successful company that continues to grow. There's a sense of stability and the firm thrives on the energy of its employees, many who have been here for a long time. There's a real sense of family, of being part of a team here. I think that's part of why we continue to rank in the top five places to work in the Bay Area.
Q. If you could go back and change any aspect of your life, which would it be?
My father died when I was 12 years old. It would be great to sit down and have a conversation with him today. Missing out on the 2005 Champion's League Final in Istanbul where the team I supported as a kid lifted Europe's premier soccer trophy.
Q. What’s your proudest moment?
Being a part of the creation of three wonderful kids. You can't beat that!
Q. If you could pass on a nugget of wisdom to aspiring accountants?
Be passionate about whatever you do, including your job!
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Industries Served
Paul's Thought Leadership
Blog articles
An overview of the existing guidance on accounting for Equity-based compensation awards under U.S. GAAP.

November 25, 2019
Blog articles
An update on two FASB projects: an ongoing project to improve how companies provide information around business segment...
Blog articles
The FASB issued guidance on transactions subject to enhanced disclosure requirements for companies.

March 01, 2013