© 2017 That's A Pretty Picture Photography, thatsaprettypicture.com
Susan M. Smith is a senior managing director with GlassRatner Advisory and Capital
Group LLC in Tampa, Florida. She
has more than 20 years’ experience
in financial advisory services,
including turnaround management,
bankruptcy and restructuring
consulting, and litigation support. She
has served as both financial advisor
and interim CFO for companies in
need of financial improvement.
Smith has provided expert testimony in
insolvency, preference, and fraudulent
transfer adversary actions, and has
testified numerous times to support
of her clients through debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing and plans of
reorganization. She also assists clients
with negotiations and communications
with boards of directors, lenders,
and government agencies.
Smith is a past president of the TMA
Florida Chapter and currently serves as
its treasurer. She is a CPA and a Certified
Insolvency and Financial Advisor (CIRA).
Q How did you gravitate into turnaround/restructuring work?
I went to work around 1990
for a CPA firm where one of the partners
was a bankruptcy trustee. Besides doing
all the normal CPA work—bookkeeping,
taxes, etc.—we did everything he needed
to do for the accounting and operational
issues for his Chapter 7s and Chapter
11s. And, of course, he was hired to do all
the accounting work by other
bankruptcy trustees because they were
generally lawyers. That was my
introduction into it.
After a few years there, I decided to
finish my CPA, so I went back to college
for the rest of my accounting classes
and got my CPA. Then I went to work
for KPMG. There we did more Chapter
11s and financial advisory work because
we were dealing with more national
companies and not just local companies.
So my foundation would be at KPMG,
where we were working with a number
of large companies and helping them
go through the restructuring process.
I was in the Corporate Recovery
Group, which was under their
Financial Advisory Services Group.
Q So you had decided to specialize by that point?
At that point, I had decided
to specialize. I like to fix things. I like to
go in and find out what the problem is,
what went wrong, and how to fix it. My
experience and my fun is dealing with
the numbers. A lot of times companies
don’t understand why they’re having
trouble, and somebody has to go into
the financials and look around and say,
“OK, you’re losing money here,” or
“You’re not doing this right here.”
A lot of companies—and you’d be
surprised how many big companies
continued on page 40