We are excited to announce the promotion of Dawn Stephenson to Chief Financial Officer! For over 20 years, Dawn has been instrumental in supporting the fiscal health of the firm, holding various positions within our Accounting team during that time. Today, she leads a team of eight people who service the accounting needs of our five offices in Charlotte, Washington DC, Dallas, Orlando, and Boulder.
Dawn’s career is a model example of mentorship in the work—a foundational principle of our culture and transgenerational approach to leadership. Joining the firm in 1998, Dawn started as a Payroll Coordinator in our Southern Pines studio, working closely with our founder, Larry Best and former CFO, Stephanie Powell. From her first day at the firm, Dawn was taken under Stephanie’s wing, gaining valuable knowledge and insight that she models in how she leads her team today. Dawn credits Stephanie’s thoughtful mentorship for much of her success at LandDesign, saying that, “she was always finding new learning opportunities for me and pushed me to reach my full potential in every role.”
Dawn believes that accounting plays a significant role in supporting the delivery of our client experience. Her perspective has been informed by the various positions she has held throughout her career—from Payroll Coordinator and Accounting Manager to Director and, now, CFO. However, Dawn’s appreciation for the value LandDesign offers clients was instilled in her while being part of the design process. During her time in Southern Pines the entire office, Accounting team included, was brought in to support with hand-colored renderings for The Reserve at Lake Keowee. Together, they gathered around a conference room table to shade trees, sketch shrubs, and color water, being part of bringing a project’s vision to life.
As a high growth firm, we are continuing to consider how we scale our business and invest in our future. Dawn’s history with LandDesign and approach to financial services has been key to our ability to successfully scale and grow over the past decade. LandDesign President, Rhett Crocker says, “Dawn’s dedication to the firm’s vision for growth and ability to connect our accounting processes with the delivery of our client experience is a key reason we are able to continue to deliver high-quality services and value to our clients.”