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Rachel Zizka

Rachel Zizka

Audit Senior Manager
Crowe Horwath LLP
Knoxville, TN


How can becoming a CPA prepare you to survive a grizzly bear attack? Just ask Rachel Zizka. A close encounter with a bear is just one of the opportunities that being a CPA has brought her. Most of the others are a little more tame, but still pretty exciting.

As Audit Senior Manager at Crowe Horwath LLP, Rachel has an impressive line-up of roles, just like she likes it. “On a typical day as a CPA, I could be doing any number of things,” she says. “You’ll find me advising a client, traveling across the country for a special project, mentoring/coaching a co-worker, networking with other professionals, volunteering time on a community development project, attending a professional development course (sometimes at a lush resort), recruiting new employees at a college campus – the possibilities are endless!”

When she’s not working, you might find Rachel indulging in one of her many favorite outdoor activities – hiking, whitewater rafting, bicycling or camping. Plus, she volunteers with a local nonprofit, she’s an extreme SEC college football fan and she’s active in her state CPA society. Needless to say, she’s involved.

Hard to imagine someone with such an action-packed life could have any regrets, but Rachel does have one: “I wish I had known the opportunities that were available to me. I grew up in a small town in Mississippi with very few professional role models. No one in my family had a college degree, and I did not have any concept of what the world had to offer, which is quite a lot.”

Good thing Rachel turned out to be as skilled at discovering possibilities as she is at wildlife survival.

Got questions of your own? Ask a CPA.

The possibilities are endless!

Stats at a Glance

Years as a CPA: 11

Best job: Spending a summer in Alaska working on a special project. Not only did I have an amazing professional experience, I learned what to do when a grizzly bear attacks!

Worst job: Pulling up rebel cornstalks growing in the soybean fields in the middle of July in the Ohio sun

Hobbies outside of work: Hiking, camping, whitewater rafting, cooking, crocheting

Words to live by: "Everyone can achieve success. My goal is to position people so they can discover that success."