Magazine October 2019

Faces of Arkansas: Kelly Phillips, Bell & Company, PA

Kelly Phillips

For Kelly Phillips, there was never a doubt in her mind where her career path would take her. Accounting, after all, runs in her blood. Her dad was a longtime accountant in the Pickens community outside Dumas, and she had an aunt and great uncle in McGehee who were in the business as well.

“I grew up helping out a lot down there,” she said. “I’ve always been a numbers person.”

After graduating from Dumas High School, UCA and the University of Alabama at Birmingham, where she got her Master’s in Accounting, sitting for the CPA exam was a no-brainer. Ten years ago, she joined the Bell & Company, PA team as a supervisor and has worked her way up to shareholder. She says it’s the best professional move she ever made. 

“It was exactly what I was looking for,” she says. “We have a lot of big firm expertise in the building, but have a small-firm mentality when it comes to how we engage with employees and clients.”

Kelly buys in to the firm’s charitable minded philosophy by working with the local chapter of the Accounting and Financial Women’s Alliance and with non-profit agencies trying to get and maintain their charitable status. Her primary focus is corporate and individual tax returns and planning and she relishes the opportunity to give clients good news they weren’t expecting.

“Sometimes we can work a little magic and tell them they don’t owe as much as they thought they would. Those are the fun phone calls,” she says. “I would be hard-pressed to find a workplace that was more supportive and encouraging of my personal and professional goals than where I am now.”

Bell & Company, PA •  501-753-9700 • /  company/bell-&-company-pa