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Whitlock Co. names ninth partner

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With the naming of its ninth partner, Springfield certified public accounting and professional services firm The Whitlock Co. is one step closer to wrapping up its five-year strategic plan, which set a goal of nine partners and 50 employees by 2012. But a company official says the planned employee count may not be necessary.

Whitlock Co. Marketing Director Anne McCormick told SBJ this morning that the company is planning to hire two additional staff accountants in January in preparation for tax season, which would bring the company's staff count to 38, including partners.

"With the addition of the new staff accountants, we'll be properly staffed to serve our clients," McCormick said, noting the company likely wouldn't meet its plans for 50 full-time employees by 2012. "We hire as the need arises. We wouldn't hire people just to reach the goal."

Chris Griesemer, director of information technology services for the firm, has been named the ninth partner, according to a news release sent this morning.

Since joining Whitlock in 1999, Griesemer has worked as a network administrator and information technology specialist, with a specialization in information technology exams for community banks. Griesemer earned his bachelor's degree in computer information systems at Missouri State University, where he teaches two management information systems classes.

In mid-November, Whitlock promoted longtime employee Kathy Hillenburg as the firm's eighth partner.

Hillenburg, who manages multiple audit engagements for client employee benefit and retirement plans in a variety of industries, joined the firm in 1987, according to a separate news release.

While working with Whitlock Co., Hillenburg has focused on small-business accounting services, computer software consulting and employee benefit audits. Hillenburg earned bachelor's degree in accounting/business administration from Drury University.

Paula Wilson, formerly of Mitchell, Roy & Wilson LLC, was named Whitlock Co.'s seventh partner when Whitlock officials on Nov. 1 entered into a merger agreement with Mitchell, Roy & Wilson, according to Springfield Business Journal archives.

With the merger, Whitlock added six new employees, bringing its total work force to 36.

The Whitlock Co., which was founded in 1913, operates an office in Joplin in addition to its Springfield headquarters. In early November, the company was honored as one of SBJ's 2011 Choice Employers.
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