James “Nick” Browning, CPA, is the partner-in-charge of Lindquist LLP’s Portland office.
One of Lindquist’s rising stars, Nick is smart and driven to succeed—he climbed the ranks to partner in less than a decade. He is trusted with some of the firm’s largest and most complex accounts, and he handles any special project that comes his way with ease. But as ambitious as he is, Nick also possesses a rare humility and professional poise appreciated by clients and colleagues alike.
The Perfect Marriage
Nick’s natural affinity for numbers led him into public accounting.
“I’ve always loved numbers,” he says. “I liked math in high school, and I’ve always been intrigued by the stock market and how financial matters work. Some people like science, some people like art, but business is what I’ve always found interesting. Marry math and business together, and you get finance or accounting."
Out of the two paths, Nick found he was attracted to the ever-changing nature of public accounting and the ability to interact with clients. “The idea of working on different projects, continually learning new things and having the opportunity to challenge myself every day appealed to me,” he says.
Lindquist and its clients are lucky Nick chose the path he did. After gaining a wealth of experience with hundreds of audits of Taft-Hartley pension and health funds, labor organizations and not-for-profit entities, Nick has been entrusted with some of the firm’s largest and most complex accounts. For example, he is a key contributor to the audit of a defined benefit pension plan with more than 500,000 participants and $40 billion in total assets.
Nick has also worked on a number of special projects, including:
A Unique Perspective
Prior to joining Lindquist LLP, Nick worked at an international accounting firm, providing audit services to employee benefit plans and businesses in the manufacturing and retail industries. Nick’s diverse experience gives him a unique perspective and an appreciation for his work with Lindquist’s clients.
“It’s important to me to know who benefits from our services,” Nick says. “In a corporate environment, you have shareholders throughout the world, and you don’t really see who they are. At Lindquist, it is gratifying to work directly with Boards of Trustees and Boards of Directors and to meet plan participants and members at events. These are the people that we provide services for. It’s important to make sure their information is accurate and useful.”
At Your Service
Out of all the aspects of his work, Nick most enjoys working with others.
“I enjoy providing exceptional service and quality, especially being responsive and providing the service that our clients deserve … meeting deadlines, responding to questions quickly and correctly, helping them fulfill their fiduciary responsibilities, and ensuring their tax returns are filed in a timely manner,” he says.“I also enjoy working with our staff and helping them develop. It’s interesting and fulfilling to see them develop their skills and knowledge, to see the lightbulbs go off in their heads.”
It is gratifying to work directly with Boards and to meet plan participants and members at events. It’s important to me to make sure their information is accurate and useful.
When he isn’t in the office, Nick can be found outdoors. He loves working on his golf game in the summer months and cross-country skiing in the winter.
Nick and his wife also enjoy hiking with their dog. Their two favorite places to go are the Columbia River Gorge and Mt. Hood.
B.S., Accountancy, Miami University of Ohio
Professional Memberships and Activities