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joan simon phillips, bus ad '89

Joan Simon Phillips

In high school, Joan Simon Phillips knew she wanted to be an accountant. She also knew she wanted to go to Marquette.

“I come from a very Catholic—and a very Marquette—family,” says Joan. “It’s my Dad’s alma mater. My older brother went there, and so did my younger sister.”

Marquette, it seemed to Joan, was also a natural for her. “I liked that it was in downtown Milwaukee, where there’s access to the business community. It meant that I’d have lots of opportunities for networking and internships,” she says.

In fact, she did do an internship, in spring 1988—with Deloitte & Touche, one the world’s largest tax, audit, consulting and financial advisory firms.

It was so successful, from both perspectives, that Deloitte offered Joan a job when she graduated in 1989. She interviewed with other firms but Deloitte was her first choice. Today she is a partner in the firm, working with multinational companies. Rockwell Automation is her principal client.

“I work in public accounting, with tax accountants and auditors,” says Joan. “I am an audit partner. We check client financial statements for accuracy. I’m responsible for the client relationship and signing the audit opinion.

“What I like about what I do is that it’s always new. You go from client to client, and you get the opportunity to travel. The regulatory environment is always changing and clients do new transactions. It really stays fresh.”

Joan has never forgotten her Marquette roots. And the top-notch education she received from its accounting program. It is precisely what brings her back to campus every year—to recruit Marquette students and new graduates for Deloitte & Touche.

“I’m the firm’s partner lead on recruiting at Marquette,” she says. “I go to the Career Fairs, and conduct campus interviews. I also recruit for internships, which are the best way to get new hires.”

In addition to her recruiting efforts, Joan also visits with Marquette students in the classroom. “The same faculty I had as a student are there, so it’s always good to see them,” says Joan. “And I really enjoy talking to the students.”

Joan, who grew up in Fond du Lac, Wis., now lives in Germantown (Wis.) with husband Dean, a chef, and two sons, Adam, 13, and Eric, 11.

She and her husband are very involved in their sons’ school, St. Mary’s–Menomonee Falls. They can be seen volunteering there and at basketball games. Joan is also a parish trustee. “We are very strong believers in Catholic education,” she says.

Joan also enjoys reading, spending time with family, going out to dinner and community service. She and her family share a love of nature, too.

“We have a cabin up in Eagle River (Wis.). We’re on a quiet lake and it’s very peaceful,” she says. “I love going there in the summer. Every Fourth of July, we host all of my family. It’s sacred time.”

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