For him, it’s more than just the num­bers

Di­rec­tor of tax ser­vices takes the time to get to know his clients

Baltimore Sun Sunday - - NEWS - By Colin Camp­bell

The com­plex world of tax law might seem more ap­peal­ing to a num­bers whiz than a creative, but the lat­ter is what David Rosen con­sid­ers him­self.

The 38-year-old part­ner and di­rec­tor of tax ser­vices at Rosen, Sap­per­stein & Fried­lan­der, an ac­count­ing and busi­ness con­sult­ing firm in Owings Mills, in­sists do­ing taxes for some of the area’s big­gest busi­nesses and in­sti­tu­tions isn’t the mind-numb­ing slog you might imag­ine.

“Try­ing to un­der­stand a per­son’s ba­sic eco­nomic deal and trans­late that into an ef­fi­cient tax struc­ture that is not un­duly com­plex re­quires cre­ativ­ity, a true un­der­stand­ing of the stake­holder’s goals and the abil­ity to fore­see po­ten­tial pit­falls so that we can mit­i­gate any neg­a­tive out­comes,” he said.

“It re­quires the same level of cre­ativ­ity as when you think of creative dis­ci­plines such as the arts, me­dia, fash­ion, what­ever the case may be,” he added. “It’s not bor­ing and it’s not re­ally about num­bers.”

Rosen grew up in Pikesville, grad­u­ated from McDonogh School in 1997 and the Univer­sity of Mary­land, Col­lege Park in 2001 and Emory School of Law in 2004.

He moved back to the Baltimore area the fol­low­ing year. In 2009, he joined the ac­count­ing firm, where he now lends his tax ex­per­tise to large in­sti­tu­tions and com­pa­nies, gen­er­ally rang­ing from $10 mil­lion to $500 mil­lion in rev­enue.

“It runs the gamut of in­dus­tries,” he said. Rosen de­clined to iden­tify his clients. They in­clude some of the area’s wealth­i­est fam­i­lies, he said.

Rosen said he’s en­joyed watch­ing the re­cent de­vel­op­ments ris­ing around Baltimore, and he sees his role — help­ing busi­ness own­ers nav­i­gate the tax code thicket to set up var­i­ous tax struc­tures to suit their needs — as in­te­gral to that growth.

“Be­sides the tax-law piece in the back­ground, what I spend the rest of time do­ing with my clients is talk­ing to them about their busi­nesses and their fam­i­lies,” Rosen said.

Help­ing those busi­nesses build a de­vel­op­ment, iden­tify po­ten­tial cus­tomers, set up a suc­ces­sion plan, or close on a ma­jor trans­ac­tion is what Rosen takes pride in — not the fi­nan­cial state­ments and tax re­turns.

“That’s not some­thing peo­ple think of when they think of an ac­count­ing firm,” he said. “Those are the things that are frankly more valu­able and im­por­tant to a client.” David Rosen Ti­tle: Com­pany: Age: Re­sides: Ed­u­ca­tion:


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