"I’m getting more imagination, feedback and guidance"
With thousands of homeless dogs and cats wandering the streets of Texas’ largest city, Houston PetSet is making a difference in the lives of unwanted, abandoned and abused animals. The nonprofit provides grant funding and assistance to organizations that help homeless animals in the sprawling metropolis, particularly in underserved areas. Fundraising efforts support veterinary care, spay/neuter services, animal cruelty prevention, research into long-term solutions to animal overpopulation, community education, legislative advocacy, and transporting homeless animals to loving homes across the Midwest where there are shortages of adoptable pets.
When Ann Kaesermann joined the Board of Directors, an office clerk and a part-time treasurer handled the accounting, which Kaesermann admits had its share of miscoded entries and delayed financial statements. When the treasurer left, the Board turned to Kaesermann – the only other CPA on the Board and a retired vice president/controller for an enormous oil and gas corporation. She was named treasurer but didn’t want to come out of retirement to assume the daily hands-on responsibility, so she reached out to YPTC to outsource much of the financial work.
“I came from 30 years of accounting in the oil and gas industry and my entire nonprofit experience was a class I took in college,” She recalls. “At the time we didn’t have a lot of confidence in our numbers and our financials. I was intrigued with YPTC because they knew nonprofits so I could rely on their base of knowledge, and they could teach me. Being a former controller, I want to get the numbers correct and timely. I want procedures, accountability and timeframes.”
YPTC staff met with Houston PetSet’s twin co-presidents to gain an understanding of the organization’s strategy and what data needed to be measured and captured. Four years’ worth of records had to be cleaned up. “We started getting the financials out on time and our package got better and better as time went on,” she adds. “They’re partners with us in trying to solve our specific issues and concerns.”
Over the years, several different associates have worked with Houston PetSet and Kaesermann is appreciative of how YPTC managers always seem to know when a change is in order. “The transitions have always been relatively seamless,” she says. “It means a lot that I can give feedback and they listen and they’re quick enough to see when something isn’t working, and we can make a change.”
YPTC began designing better information packages in plain English so the Board can more easily understand the financial picture. YPTC offered unsolicited ideas for revamping systems and making improvements. “That’s not what a run-of-the-mill outsourcer would do; they usually just follow your instructions. With YPTC I’m getting more imagination, feedback and guidance, which is what I was looking for.”
30-YEAR CONGRATULATIONS: “30 years in business is a feather in your cap!”
“Wow! I didn’t realize they’ve been around for 30 years. They get big kudos for that. It’s a testament to their business model, expertise and customer service. Thirty years in business is a feather in your cap. A lot of businesses don’t last that long.”
— Ann Kaesermann, Treasurer