MEET THE UPPO 2017/18 PRESIDENT (Article published in April 2017 UPPO Member Update Learn more.)
Carla McGlynn has a habit of saying “yes” a lot. That tendency has propelled her career, kept her involved in numerous community organizations and led to her recent induction as UPPO’s 2017/2018 president.
“I can’t say no,” she says. “When it comes to something I really enjoy or feel passionate about, I just don’t say no.”
That philosophy has proven beneficial. Following college, McGlynn began her career with Tiffany & Co., working in the Internal Audit Group. In order to create an internal audit manual, her job rotated through the company’s various financial departments—accounts receivable, cost accounting, payroll and tax. She developed an interest in tax and the company saw her potential in that area, so that’s where she stayed. When the company suggested she pursue a master’s degree in tax, she said yes.
During her post-graduate studies, McGlynn was offered a job by her state & local tax professor who worked for Deloitte. Again, she said yes. While at Deloitte, none at the firm handled unclaimed property consulting for clients yet, but the need was becoming apparent. When members of the tax team were asked if anyone had any unclaimed property experience, McGlynn raised her hand, as she had gained some knowledge of it during her work at Tiffany & Co. One of Deloitte’s partners asked her to develop and lead the firm’s unclaimed property practice in the New York tri-state area.
“They had a vision, saw an opportunity and felt I could handle it, so I did,” she says. “It came at a time early in my career. Normally you’re not given that opportunity as a senior staff in a major firm. I am so grateful they gave me the opportunity.”
In 2001, McGlynn moved to Ernst & Young, where she worked until they disbanded the unclaimed property practice in 2004. After working at a specialty consulting firm, Abandoned Property Services LLC (APS), for six years, she formed Unclaimed Property Consulting & Reporting LLC, and joined by other talented unclaimed property professionals, they have been helping the holder community since 2010.
“I love working with companies that don’t have an unclaimed property process, helping them establish one and then seeing management recognize the need to hire a person or two to focus on unclaimed property compliance going forward,” she says. “Being involved in a company adding positions to focus on compliance and maintain compliance is very rewarding.”
Shortly after moving to APS, McGlynn began her involvement with UPPO. At the 2006 annual conference, recognizing how important the event’s education was to unclaimed property professionals, she volunteered to become a member of the Professional Development Committee. She eventually chaired the committee and oversaw the organization’s annual conference and holder seminars for three years, developing the agenda and content, finding speakers and organizing the events.
It didn’t take long for fellow UPPO members to encourage her to run for the UPPO Board of Directors. It’s no surprise that she again said yes. She campaigned for and became secretary for two terms and then repeated the process to become second vice president, progressing through the officer chairs of first vice president in 2016 and president this year.
McGlynn’s presidency comes during an exciting time for the unclaimed property community and UPPO. She is excited to continue growing the association’s education and professional development program, working toward an expansion of the certification program. Membership growth is another major initiative. Bringing more people into UPPO gives the organization a greater ability to develop more educational programs and gives our advocacy efforts a louder voice. In fact, McGlynn sees advocacy as UPPO’s most exciting initiative during her term.
“Many states are making changes to their unclaimed property laws to make them more relevant to the current times and today’s technology,” she says. “Having a really big voice on behalf of our holder community as the states make those changes is so beneficial. As soon as states begin talking about enacting something affecting holders, the Government Relations and Advocacy Committee is immediately involved to give the holder community a voice. That makes a huge impact.”
With UPPO playing such an important role in the professional lives of members, McGlynn is honored to serve as its president this year.
“UPPO has been a huge influence in my development as an unclaimed property professional,” she says. “I am thankful for this opportunity to give back to UPPO and you, the members of this outstanding organization.”
When she’s not focusing on unclaimed property, McGlynn is still driven by her habit of saying yes. She volunteers for the Berkley Heights Education Foundation, which raises funds to provide educational programs and technology to the six schools in her New Jersey community. She also currently serves as vice president of the parent-teacher organization at the high school attended by her two daughters, and is Eucharistic minister coordinator at her church.
So, what drives McGlynn’s heavy involvement in her profession and her community?
“I am a first-generation American citizen,” she says. “I came here when my parents emigrated from Portugal in the 1970s and have taken advantage of every opportunity America offers. I am the first member of my family to get a college degree and post-graduate degree. Everything I receive, I try to give back in any way I can.”