Readers’ Choice 2014: Business & Professional
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Filing tax returns and dealing with other financial realities are best left to the experts. Readers say these certified public accountants help ease minds with their professional, personal assistance.
Samuel Gluck is a CPA with Goldberg, Gluck & Associates. The Foster City firm focuses on individuals, partnerships, corporations and nonprofit organizations. “We provide personalized services for all our clients who live around the area, across the country and around the world,” Gluck says.
Iryna Oreshkova is a CPA and the owner of Iryna Accountancy Corp. The Oakland firm provides accounting and business advice, conducts audits, plans tax strategies and prepares tax returns. Additionally, it will help clients buy and sell companies while planning for the future. Oreshkova stresses the importance of personal relationships. Her approach involves building trust and taking the time to understand each client’s business or financial situation.
Jerome Spector is a CPA with Burr Pilger Mayer in East Palo Alto and has been serving the Peninsula for more than 40 years. “BPM helps clients through their company lifecycle, manage their financial lives now and plan for their family’s future while contributing to their communities,” Spector says. He specializes in complex tax, trust and estate issues, as well as closely held businesses. He is involved in the Jewish and financial communities as a member of the Jewish Community Endowment Fund Professional Advisory Committee and the California Society of CPAs.
East Palo Alto
Financial professionals work under a big umbrella, offering a range of assistance when it comes to making financial decisions, but our readers chose these Bay Area financial advisers as their favorites because of their exceptional personal service.
Ira Fateman works with SAS Financial Advisors in San Francisco and has more than 20 years of experience in financial services. He is a certified financial planner and has a master’s degree in counseling. His approach is to help clients “increase their feelings of control over their personal finances to increase their confidence and help them be happier,” his website profile says. Fateman’s combination of financial and counseling skills gives him the tools necessary to help clients make better decisions about their assets.
Guy Ben Ari is in his fifth year with Edward Jones Investments, which serves individual investors and business owners. “We believe it’s important to invest our time to understand what you’re working toward before you invest your money,” says Ben Ari, who is based in Alameda. He works closely with the client, as well as the client’s CPA, attorney and other professionals, to determine the best financial strategy. Rather than focus on short-term profits, Ben Ari “emphasizes buying quality investments, diversifying them and holding them for the long-term,” he says.
ELM Advisors in Burlingame provides “comprehensive, customized financial planning and portfolio management primarily to high net worth individuals,” says Elana Lieberman, a company principal. Though ELM assists clients of all ages, the focus is on those who are nearing or in retirement. The firm tries to streamline the portfolios of its clients to provide peace of mind. They also benefit from the company’s large resources, such as alliances and partnerships with other firms.
Guy Ben Ari
What types of insurance policies are important to have, and how much? Readers voted for these insurance agents for their expertise in helping clients get the coverage that meets their needs and offers peace of mind.
Jaffe-Schlossberg is a third-generation family insurance agency in its 76th year of business in San Francisco. Relationships developed with numerous insurance companies allow Jaffe-Schlossberg to provide clients with top-notch homeowners, automobile, business, apartment, life, health, long-term care and disability policies. Vice president Adam Jaffe is particularly proud of the company’s technological advances. “In the upcoming months we will be rolling out a new program that allows our clients to see their insurance declarations pages 24/7 and anywhere in the world,” Jaffe says.
Anthony Graziani is the president at Alive Insurances Inc. in El Cerrito. He provides professional management of clients’ personal and business insurance. His specialty is in high-value homes, rental properties, apartment buildings, commercial buildings and small businesses. Graziani says he can make the biggest impact with clients who have three or more personal and/or business policies, helping to close coverage gaps, bundle policies and assist with cost-reduction strategies.
Charlie Porter has been in business for 22 years and works with Farmers Insurance in Menlo Park. He is dedicated not only to insuring members of his community, but also to providing other benefits through community service projects. Porter is a member of the international community service Kiwanis Club and will be president of the Menlo Park chapter this year. Porter “knows the ins and outs of the business,” says a Yelp reviewer. “He is friendly, reliable, honest and always available in case of emergency.”
Grandma probably advised you to become a doctor or a lawyer. For those who didn’t follow that motherly directive, readers say these Bay Area lawyers can help when there is a need for legal assistance.
Barbara Moser is a founding partner in San Francisco’s Kaye-Moser-Hierbaum. The firm is “a boutique divorce, estate planning and probate firm that serves high net worth and high-profile individuals,” Moser says. It specializes in all aspects of family law, estate planning, probate and trust administration and litigation, as well as crossover issues. KMH strives to provide quality service during challenging times in clients’ lives.
Neil Taxy, also in San Francisco, specializes in transactional work, real estate, intellectual property, trademark and mediation with the firm Leland, Parachini, Steinberg, Matzger & Melnick. His years of experience have provided him “with a rewarding and enriching profession, and a platform to be involved in community service and to work with a broad range of people in personal, fulfilling relationships that span decades,” Taxy says.
Wayne Lampert is an attorney in Oakland whose firm emphasizes business counseling for transactions and disputes, probate and trust administration and estate planning. “We are proud to have long-term relationships with our clients,” Lampert’s company website says. He strives to charge reasonable fees and keeps clients well informed about the legal process.
David Keystone aims to meet the legal needs of businesses. “It is our perspective that we best serve our clients’ interests by anticipating, identifying and resolving issues before they can have a significant adverse impact on their businesses,” Keystone’s website says. The Oakland office offers no-cost, no-obligation consultations to help businesses in the long term or for a one-time project.
Paul Roskoph specializes in tax and estate planning matters, consulting with individuals and small family businesses. He works out of his Palo Alto office with high net worth individuals, venture capital managing members and private foundations. He also is certified by the state Board of Legal Specialization in estate planning, trust and probate law.
Joan Rodman is an attorney and CPA who opened her law office in San Rafael 15 years ago and has handled tax matters for more than 25 years. She provides personalized business and tax services for individuals and small businesses. “My practice includes civil and criminal tax matters, estate planning and resolving disputes among heirs and beneficiaries,” as well as preparing tax returns, she says.
Barbara W. Moser
With so many beautiful, intriguing places in the world to discover, it can be hard to know where to start. Rather than spend countless hours researching on their own, our readers turn to these trusted travel agents for their guidance and expertise.
Sandy Lipkowitz brings the perspective of a world traveler to her San Francisco travel consulting agency, We Make Travel Easy. Her goal is to give clients the vacation they want, without the burden of planning the details themselves. “I will provide full service travel consultation and booking for you so you can have that fabulous vacation and not have to spend your precious and limited time arranging the details,” Lipkowitz says. She is also working on a new travel concept for singles over 50 who want to travel and mingle together.
Ourisman Travel, a travel consultancy in Berkeley, specializes in luxury hotel bookings, vacation packages to Hawaii and the Caribbean, and African safaris. “As specialists in luxury hotels, we provide our clients with exclusive, value-added amenities at over 1,000 of the world’s top five-star hotels,” says owner David Ourisman. He tries to make the planning of a vacation as fun as actually taking it, encouraging clients to collaborate in the process.
Ladera Travel in Menlo Park gives personalized attention to leisure and business travelers alike. Husband-and-wife team Les and Nancy Burger bought the 45-year-old agency in 1990. Serving a discerning clientele, Ladera combines quality customer service with custom itineraries for leisure trips internationally and domestically. It provides travel arrangements for cruises, corporate and leisure travel, and offers a number of travel specials throughout the year.
Michal Reihanian is a native of Israel who has served as a travel specialist to the Middle East for 26 years. “I guarantee a customized trip for a first-timer or the frequent traveler,” says Reihanian, who is based in Larkspur. She still travels to the region every year to keep updated on renovated hotels, new tourist sites, restaurants and entertainment venues. She also communicates regularly with her own tour operators in the region, allowing her clients to cut costs while creating lasting memories.
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