Mid-market accounting and consulting firm Crowe LLP has appointed Mark Baer as its CEO-elect. Baer will take on the CEO role on April 1, 2021 after a one-year transition period.
Current CEO Jim Powers will serve out the final year of his second term, which is the maximum allowed by the company’s board.
Baer has nearly 30 years of professional services experience, and has been with Crowe for the last 18 years. He has spent the last five years as the managing partner for the firm’s audit and assurance services business, leading a team of over 1,200 professionals. Baer has also served on the firm’s management committee, CEO advisory council, and partner screening committee.
He is also director of Crowe Cayman Ltd., and previously served as office managing partner for Columbus, Ohio.
Prior to joining Crowe, Baer spent ten years at PwC, where he was latterly a senior manager. He holds a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Manchester University in Indiana.
“My priorities leading Crowe’s Audit and Assurance practice have been maintaining the highest standards of audit quality and managing rapidly evolving technology while creating rewarding career experiences for our people,” said Baer. “I look forward to expanding that focus to the entire firm. I feel privileged to have the opportunity to serve Crowe’s people and clients in the role of CEO.”
Baer was elected by the firm’s board of directors following an extensive vetting practice.
“Mark was chosen to lead our firm for many reasons but primarily due to his visionary mindset with a focus on our digital transformation, his track record of successful leadership of our Audit and Assurance practice and his commitment to audit quality,” said Dawnella Johnson, Crowe board chair. “The board is confident that Mark is the right person to lead Crowe’s brand promise of helping our clients and our people make smart decisions today that will lead to lasting value tomorrow.”
Baer will focus on continuing the firm’s digital transformation – including emerging services and solutions – as well as market expansion into key industries and geographies, according to a release from Crowe.
Last fall, the Chicago-headquartered firm appointed Rex Voorheis as its first chief information security officer (CISO) and Steve Strammello as its chief risk officer (CRO).
The bulk of Crowe’s staff and operations are based in the US, with further international locations in the Cayman Islands; New Delhi, India; and London and Paris. The firm is a member of the Crowe Global network, which spans 200+ independent firms across 130 countries. Crowe Global has global revenues of $4.3 billion and an employee headcount of 42,000.