January 2019 Print

Note from your Chapter President

Dear members of the El Paso Area Chapter of the ACFE,

I am very excited to step into the role of Chapter president and continue with the great work our chapter has accomplished over the past few years. I am grateful to have such committed and hard-working individuals serving as Chapter officers and Board members. It takes a team to support our Chapter! If you wish to become involved, please reach out to any Officer or Board member; there is a wide variety of opportunities to serve, some of which only take minimal time and effort. We also encourage you to consider our CFE certification which will help you develop as a professional and hold you accountable to high standards of excellence.

I am pleased to inform our members that 2018 was a success. Our chapter held four events during the year including training on advanced concepts for auditors and fraud examiners, training on fraud vulnerabilities in contracting, a family night event at the Chihuahua’s stadium, and a one-hour ethics training during our annual membership meeting. Thanks to your support and participation in these events, we will be able to build on this momentum.

The Board is committed to our mission to serve our members and the community by offering staff development and networking opportunities aimed to improve fraud awareness and deterrence. Our first event for 2019 has already been scheduled. We are excited to welcome Dr. Mark Nigrini for the Forensic Analytics and Accounting Technology training on February 21, 2019. The Board will soon be rolling out new ideas and other staff development opportunities for 2019.

I look forward to continuing to grow our Chapter and ask for your support in helping us accomplish our mission. My sincerest appreciation to all of you who have volunteered with our Chapter and all our members for your continued participation.

Mayra Martinez, CFE, CIA, CGAP, RTSBA
President, El Paso Area Chapter of the ACFE

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Member Spotlight

Luis Carrera, CPA, CIA, CISA

Audit Manager
El Paso Independent School District (EPISD)

What do you enjoy most in your current position?

Every day is different, it doesn’t matter how you much you plan there is always something that comes up that requires changes to your “to do list”. When you’re in a profession where work doesn’t feel like work, you know you found the right profession. 

How did you become involved with the El Paso ACFE and/or auditing?

A month after joining the Internal Audit Department at EPISD, I attended my first El Paso ACFE training (“Forensic Analytics and Employee Fraud” by Mark J. Nigrini, Ph.D. held on April 24, 2015). Soon after, I became a member of the Chapter and have been attending trainings offered since then.

If you were not an internal auditor, what would you be?

If I was not an internal auditor, I would have liked to have gone into a Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A) Department. When I worked for a publicly traded company I always enjoyed reviewing management assumptions, internal/external factors, etc. that impacted cash flow analysis and financial projections. Information coming out of this department affected every department across the organization.

What is one interesting fact that people would be surprised to know about you?

I lost two wedding rings personally selected by my wife; the first one had a beautiful engraved message from my wife, “Today I give you my heart”. Fast forward to today…I wear a $7 silicone wedding ring I purchased from Amazon. In case I lose that one, I have extras in my vehicle’s glove compartment and at home.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I enjoy spending quality time with my loving wife, my six year-old (who has a similar personality as me) and my three year-old (who has the opposite personality as me). As my wife is from Fort Worth and I lived in the Dallas-Fort Worth area for a significant portion of my career, we make multiple road trips to that part of Texas to visit family and friends.

Aside from family, I also enjoy giving back to the internal audit community by volunteering as the President of the El Paso Chapter of the Institute of Internal Auditors (IIA). Getting involved has brought a different type of purpose to my life, it has motivated me to get involved in various initiatives that impact he community I live in.

There is a famous quote from Mahatma Gandhi that expresses how I feel about volunteering "The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others."

What advice would you give to other ACFE professionals or those considering a career in auditing?

I have worked in audit my entire career, with 10+ years in internal audit. I have seen the benefits of working in internal audit that I wish I knew before going into this profession. As an internal auditor you’re an employee of the organization and get an opportunity to become an expert or almost expert in the area/department that you’re auditing. Management also gets to see the value that you bring to the organization and you might get opportunities to work in non-internal audit areas. Over the years, many of my former internal audit co-workers/friends have gone on to become Controllers, Chief Financial Auditors, Financial Reporting Directors, etc. and some have stayed within internal audit. As for me, I enjoy the evolving changes that the internal audit profession has gone through since I first started my career; I don’t see myself leaving the profession!

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Local Chapter News

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Join Us Today!!!

It's time to renew your annual El Paso Area Chapter of ACFE membership! We are simplifying the membership renewal process this year. All members will receive an email from [email protected] that will allow you to view and pay your invoice for membership dues. If you prefer to mail a check rather than pay online, please mail the check with a copy of the invoice to:

El Paso Area Chapter of ACFE #192
P.O. Box 2321
El Paso, TX 79952

No application renewal form is needed; however, if you have a change in contact information, please email us.  If you do not receive an email from [email protected] this week, let us know (but first check your spam folder).

Please renew your membership with our local Chapter today in order to save on future training events and network with anti-fraud professionals in the El Paso/Las Cruces area. Please note that membership in the El Paso Area ACFE Chapter is completely separate from the National ACFE membership. Local membership does not include access to ACFE Online Fraud Tools and Training Videos. For more information on National membership, go to https://www.acfe.com/membership-certification.aspx

If you or someone you know is not a member and would like to become one, please complete the membership application HERE.

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