RUBY Aggarwal, CPA, CGMA
Ruby is a Certified Public Accountant licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia. Ruby comes from an entrepreneurial family and has worked since she was 11 years old. Ruby enjoys the satisfaction of assisting her clients whether it is in the CFO, Director of Finance, or Controller role, or with special projects. She also is accomplished at assisting individuals with mediation and conflict resolution. Ruby earned her Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Maryland and has recently completed the AICPA Not-for-Profit Certificate Programs I and II. When not working, Ruby is dedicated to her family and enjoys volunteering, cooking and entertaining.
Jared earned a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Purdue University. Prior to joining OCS, he spent six years at Trinity Washington University, where he spent the last three years as the university’s Controller. In that role, he gained experience in an array of non-profit accounting functions, and worked directly with the university’s Board of Trustees, Audit and Finance Committees, auditors, and other department managers on behalf of the finance team. He is proficient with Microsoft Great Plains and Management Reporter, and has a particular interest and knowledge in the budgeting, forecasting, and reconciliation processes. Outside of work, Jared enjoys attending Washington Wizards games, rooting for the Purdue Boilermakers, biking, reading, and hiking and camping with his wife, Sarah.
Alison Benson, CPA
Alison Benson moved to DC in 2003 to serve as a full-time volunteer in AmeriCorps, with the eventual goal of working in the non-profit sector. Originally from northern Minnesota, she studied Math and Philosophy and earned her Bachelor of Arts in Accounting from the College of St. Benedict . After a year of service as a case worker in the DC community, she spent three years in accounting for commercial real estate. In 2007 she got her CPA licensure in the Commonwealth of Virginia and soon after found her non-profit calling, spending the next 10 years at the National Geographic Society. There she was the Director of Finance & Planning in the CFO's Office, where she managed consolidation of the strategic, budget and planning efforts, as well as board reporting. She also led the implementation of Hyperion software, and later oversaw planning and strategy for the Education and Children's Media division. With a passion for travel, cycling, backpacking, and the great outdoors, the DC region has become a natural fit and many weekends are spent actively out and about. In her spare time she also enjoys quilting and seeing music with her husband, Glen, and seeking out adventures around their home on Capitol Hill with their dog and two little ones.
Shanté holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting from Norfolk State University. She has served in various leadership roles within the accounting area for both nonprofit and public organizations. Shanté has a strong hybrid background of both accounting/ finance operations and their related business systems. Her passion is working as the liaison between accounting/ finance and IT on various implementation projects and resolving programmatic issues. She approaches each project with a positive attitude and strives to provide great customer service to both internal and external stakeholders. Personally, she enjoys volunteering at her church and within the community. She is dedicated to her family and friends, living a healthy lifestyle, and all things “Miles” her son.
Diana Connolly, CPA
Diana, a CPA licensed in the state of Florida, has served not-for-profit organizations throughout her career. For ten years, she worked as an auditor in public accounting, with a wide-ranging slate of clients, particularly focused on the not-for-profit and healthcare industries. More recently, she spent four years at National Geographic Society as a Director of Corporate Finance, responsible for accounting for the Society's not-for-profit activities. Diana holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with majors in Accounting and Management from Washington University in St. Louis. She and her husband recently moved to Maryland, so while she is an avid Florida State Seminoles fan, she is also learning to love the Ravens and Orioles. Diana loves exploring outdoors and making messes in the name of art with her young sons.
Amy proudly holds the honor of being the first employee of O’Connor Consulting Services. Amy holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Westminster College. Before joining OCS in 2001, she served as the Executive Assistant to the CFO of a large not-for-profit organization. In addition to working as the Operations Manager, Amy loves to work directly with our clients. Over the years, Amy has served as an accounts payable coordinator, outsourced bookkeeper, implementation specialist, on-site registration coordinator and has pitched in on countless other client projects. When not working for OCS, she can be found behind the wheel of her minivan driving children to a variety of activities. When the work is done, the car pools completed, and the homework checked, Amy enjoys spending time with her husband, reading and planning their next family adventure.
Hannah Grisar, CPA
Hannah is a Certified Public Accountant licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia. She earned her Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Accounting from Oglethorpe University in Atlanta. Hannah has served the not-for-profit community throughout her career. Prior to joining OCS, Hannah worked for multiple trade associations, over a ten-year period, in their accounting, budgeting and contracting functions. Hannah has also led several special projects to address associations’ evolving business needs, including systems implementations and process enhancements to improve efficiencies and to provide better service to internal clients.
A native of Western Pennsylvania, Kelly holds a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from the University of Pittsburgh. Kelly joined O’Connor Consulting Services in September 2015 and primarily supports clients with Federal grant and contract management. Prior to joining OCS, Kelly served in various leadership capacities in the not-for-profit, advertising, and hospitality industries and she also serves on the board of directors of two small local not-for-profit organizations. When she isn’t working, Kelly is busy shuttling her two children back and forth to various activities, tending to her flock of backyard chickens, or planning the next family vacation.
Melinda earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Accounting & Economics from Chatham University. Melinda joined OCS in 2019 after spending over 20 years in senior finance and accounting roles with both not-for-profit and for-profit organizations. Prior to joining OCS, Melinda was the Vice-President of Finance for the American Nurses Association, where she led the organization through a financial transformation. Throughout her career, Melinda has excelled in the areas of budgeting and forecasting, modernizing policies and re-engineering procedures, creating insightful financial reports and analysis, implementing financial systems, and ensuring overall financial sustainability. She also has significant experience creating board financial packages and presenting to the board of directors and subcommittees. Melinda began her career as an associate with PriceWaterhouse Coopers. In her spare time, Melinda enjoys staying active by playing volleyball competitively, running, and overseeing the adventures of Patch, her one-eyed pug.
Ian holds a Bachelor’s degree from Oregon State University and a Masters of Business Administration with a concentration in Accounting and Finance from the R.H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland in 2016. Since 2013, he has worked as an accounting coordinator for a mid-size not for profit organization with multiple entities handling all functions within the cash receipts and cash disbursements functions. In this role, Ian has gained experience in problem solving, accounting systems, and FEC reporting support. He is proficient in Microsoft's Great Plains and QuickBooks. Ian enjoys supporting others in creating much more fluid accounting systems and helping with various special projects. When not hard at work, Ian spends his free time exercising and participating in action sports.
Colleen Smith, CPA
Colleen joined the O’Connor Consulting Services team in 2012 with a focus on providing high level expertise and analysis to her clients. She has served not-for-profit organizations for nearly 20 years. In her time with OCS, Colleen has overseen the financial operations for clients; assisted clients in system implementations and redesigning chart of accounts; served as a Deputy CFO to a University; consulted on the implementation of new accounting standards; and conducted reviews of clients’ financial operations and activities. Prior to joining OCS, Colleen was Vice-President of Financial Planning and Analysis for National Geographic Ventures, a subsidiary of the National Geographic Society. Colleen was also a Director of Financial Planning and Analysis in the CFO’s Office and worked several years in the Controller’s Office at the Society. Prior to National Geographic, Colleen performed audits of not-for-profit organizations while working at KPMG. Colleen graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a Bachelor of Science in accounting and is a Certified Public Accountant licensed by the Commonwealth of Virginia. Colleen has completed the AICPA Not-for-Profit Certificate Program I. Colleen lives in Arlington with her husband, Brett, and her three children, Madeline, Finley, and Keegan.
Tasha Williams has a Bachelor of Science in Accounting from North Carolina State University and recently completed the AICPA Not-for-Profit Certificate Program I. Since joining OCS in 2013, Tasha performs CFO and Controller level functions, primarily supporting clients in such areas as financial reporting and analysis, business advisory, process improvement and specialized projects. Prior to joining OCS, Tasha worked for nearly 15 years for public and nonpublic entities in the Private Equity, Secondary Mortgage Markets and Airline industries. When not working, Tasha enjoys traveling with her husband and spending time with family and friends.
Helen Zelinsky, CPA
Helen, a CPA licensed in the state of California, has been working in the nonprofit industry for the past 8 years. Prior to that time, Helen worked in public accounting supporting both tax and audit clients. She earned a Masters in Accountancy from San Jose State University and has completed the AICPA Not-for-Profit Certificate Program I. Prior to coming to OCS, Helen worked as a controller for a small nonprofit where she loved being involved in all levels of the entity and its accounting. Throughout her career, she has been drawn towards accounting roles with opportunities to provide client service and training. Beyond her dedication to her work, Helen is also an avid traveler and food lover. She currently lives in Montenegro with her wife and their two daughters, Atlas and Evin.