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The most important story to us is yours. What makes you tick? What frustrates you about the accounting industry, and how can we help you address that? We're here to share our story with you, and listen to yours.

DAN WHITTAKERCPA, Managing Partner


I am educated and trained professionally as a CPA, but my professional passion is running and growing businesses. I enjoy running a business much more than being a CPA!

I founded Whittaker & Company in 1999, and what we do for clients is what is important to me as a business owner, too: to increase business value, gain clarity on goals, and understand financially where they stand.

Before founding Whittaker, I worked as a manager in the tax and consulting departments at KPMG LLP and also for a large local public accountancy firm in Southern California. The high level skills I used then on strategic tax and consulting projects are just as applicable today to the clients we work with on a daily basis at Whittaker.

“Mark Cuban says, ‘Business is the ultimate sport.’ I completely agree with his statement!”

The question I get asked the most from our clients is, “How do I get from point A to point B?” Naturally the answer to that depends on a variety of factors – but I really enjoy working with our clients to find the answer to that question!

Favorite book: The Bible

Favorite band: U2

Number one hobby: Wakeboarding

What would make this world a better place: Compassionate people and servant leaders.

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I’m very good at the detail! And yet what I enjoy most about the work I do is the interaction with our clients and our team that takes place while we get the work done.

There’s always a fine balance there: even though I enjoy the detail work, I’m always wishing that I had more time to spend with the clients to work on their businesses. It’s so fascinating to learn about what’s important to them, and exciting to help them achieve what they want to. But the detail work needs to be done in order to get them there. I work on the monthly and or quarterly close of clients’ books along with the financial reporting that is needed.

I came from a public accounting background, beginning my career in the tax department at McGladrey & Pullen (now RSM McGladrey). I also worked with Pacificare (now United Healthcare) as a senior tax analyst, project manager of finance, and consultant in the human resources department.

I believe what our company does well is meeting the client wherever they currently are in terms of their financial understanding of their business. I love working with them to determine where they want to go and what tools we can use to get them moving in that direction.

We’re a small family business, and one of the questions I get asked regularly is, “What’s it like to work with your husband?” My answer is that we are like many of our family owned business clients. We each bring our own unique set of skills to serve in our business, and in our case we complement each other and can provide much more together. It’s a joy to serve you together!

Number one hobby: Spending time with my family

Something I care passionately about: I really believe we have a great team that is passionate about serving our clients. We really do want to help them build better business to build better lives.

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I grew up in various family businesses, including a pet store in Canada, a jewelry store in the Bronx, and a coin laundry in downtown LA. This is where my passion for entrepreneurship started. My first job out of college was here at Whittaker, and I have been with the firm since 2006.

My specialty is fixing problems. I work with our clients on accounting and tax issues, as well as strategic and business planning and some marketing. What I enjoy most about working with Whittaker is the combination of a small business atmosphere with a corporate vision and direction. We’re always striving for progress, both individually and as a team.

My number one hobby: I’m still seeking this ever since I retired from playing basketball at 16.

Most passionate about in life: Being a part of people’s growth

Something I would never eat: Insects

What would make the world a better place: Ownership for choices made, accountability for outside feedback, and a humble attitude or perspective to grow from all the above

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I enjoy making my corner of the world a better place, and sharing knowledge with others and learning things I don’t know.

I joined Whittaker in the beginning of 2017,and my role involves tax planning and returns and some financial reporting. I love organizing and displaying a business’ financial data to tell the story of their business.  I also enjoy writing about technical concepts in simpler terms so our clients can use the information we give them.

Favorite book: The Republic

Favorite film: The Matrix

Number one hobby: Planning trips to music festivals

What I wish more people knew about me: I studied philosophy in college and love to have philosophical discussions

What would make this world a better place: If we all judge each other less and empathize with each other more

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BLANCA PELAYOSenior Accountant


I joined the Whittaker team in 2017.

I will be pursuing my CPA License while gaining experience in all areas here at Whittaker.  I will be focusing on the bookkeeping aspect, but will also be assisting with tax returns and financial statements.

The best part about my job is the rewarding satisfaction I get after solving a problem and getting my balances to equal.

Hidden talents:  I learned how to do my own nails when I was 16

Little known facts: I was part of a Mexican Folkloric Ballet when I was in high school

What do you care most passionately about: My family

Favorite movie: Mean Girls

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PRIYANK SHUKLACPA, Senior Accountant


I joined Whittaker & Company in January 2018.

I am best at doing research and organizing data. I like to explain and simplify technical accounting terms to non-accountants. It is rewarding for me to see how my role here at Whittaker & Co. adds value to a client’s business and helps them in achieving their goals.

I love to travel! I did a 10-country backpacking trip across Europe couple years back which was a life-changing experience for me. And recently I spent my Christmas and New Years’ in Australia and New Zealand.

Goal: To run a marathon one day

Favorite Book: The Great Gatsby

What are you most passionate about?: Learning and solving problems

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JEN KIMStaff Accountant

JEN KIM's Story

I joined the Whittaker team in 2019.

I am pursuing my master’s degree in accounting and gaining knowledge on the bookkeeping side of things here at Whittaker. The thing I like most about Whittaker is that we consider each client’s unique needs and help them maximize their potential.

I enjoy helping people with their strengths and interests. I also love to make people laugh and tell them stories.

Favorite movie: Wild Sargasso

Favorite band: Beyoncé

Favorite movie: 2001 Space Odyssey

What would make the world a better place?: If everybody read more

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ALYSE HENDRICKAdministrative Assistant


I joined Whitaker & Company in February 2018.

It is important to me to be able to do something that I enjoy and working with great people that I enjoy being around.

It was vital to me to find a place that puts family first in their priorities and I am excited to find that here at Whittaker. I am a mom to two incredible young daughters, and being a mom is truly what I am passionate about in life.

Favorite movie: The Notebook

Favorite band: Coldplay

What would make the world a better place?: If we just tried to have more understanding for one another

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SUSAN KIENITZClient Service Coordinator


Communicating with our clients and organizing are the two things I enjoy the most – and as it happens that’s exactly what I do in my role at Whittaker. The comments I get the most are that I’m efficient, and nice!

I think what we do really well is taking the time to get to know and understand our clients and their companies, which in turn allows us to guide them much more productively. We concentrate on building relationships with our clients.

I’ve worked with Whittaker since 2006, having previously owned several businesses. I also worked with my husband on the manufacture of children’s products, which is a business my husband continues to run.

Number one hobby: Hiking

Most passionate about in life: My family

Favorite film: Top Gun

Favorite band: Bon Jovi

What would make the world a better place: If more people loved God and Jesus Christ

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Tax returns, financial statements, IRS communications and similar items are vital to address and process, but they should not be the focal point. Think of these as tasks to get to the real work, which is providing you the information you need and an interchange of ideas to move you forward. The goal is to help you implement your strategies and vision. This is what we do!