Whitley Penn Announces 2020 New Partners

Plano, TX (January 2, 2020) – Whitley Penn is pleased to announce that Tommy Byrd, Melinda Jones, Josh Plunk, Chase Tipton, Justin Wetzler, and John Williamson have been invited into the partnership effective January 1, 2020.

Tommy Byrd, CPA, advises public and private clients in the following industries: oil and gas, healthcare, service, industrial manufacturing, and transportation.  He has also had significant exposure to international tax, sales tax, IRS audits, mergers and acquisitions, and state and local tax.  Byrd is a member of the TSCPA, AICPA, Petroleum Accountants Society of Houston (PASH), Houston Energy Finance Group, and Young Professionals in Energy.  Within the community, he serves as Sojourn Church Houston Heights Parish Leader, is a member of the Sojourn Church Houston Heights Financial Stewardship Team, and is an active member of the Baylor Business Alumni Association.  Byrd will serve on the Center for Houston’s Future Business/Civic Leadership in the Fall of 2020. He is a graduate of Baylor University having received a Bachelor of Business Administration in Accounting and a Master’s of Science in Taxation from the university.

Melinda Jones, CPA, has more than 30 years of combined experience in banking and public accounting.  She leads Whitley Penn’s Financial Institutions tax practice. Her experience as a community bank CFO combined with her public accounting experience uniquely qualifies her to serve clients in all sectors. Her areas of practice include financial institutions, professional services, real estate, telecommunications, computer software, and title companies as well as high net worth individual clients. In addition to ASC 740 reviews, Jones is responsible for training and mentoring of associates and is a frequent presenter at events for various industry groups. She is a member of the AICPA, TSCPA, Texas Bankers Association, and the Independent Bankers Association of Texas.  Jones earned a Bachelor of Business Administration, magna cum laude, from the University of Texas at Tyler.

Josh Plunk, CPA, began his accounting career as a fiduciary and estate tax accountant with a large national bank before deciding to pursue a career in public accounting. His experience focuses on wealth management and individual, gift, and estate planning and compliance. He also has experience as a Technical and Review Editor for several estate planning and compliance publications including Practitioner’s Publishing Company’s “PPC’s 706/709 Deskbook”, “PPC’s 1041 Deskbook”, and “PPC’s Guide to Practical Estate Planning”.  Plunk received his Bachelor of Business Administration and Masters of Accountancy degrees from Baylor University.  He is a member of the AICPA, TSCPA, and the Fort Worth Business and Estate Council.

Chase Tipton, CPA, has 12 years of experience focused primarily on exploration and production companies in the oil and gas industry ranging in size and structure from individuals, private equity funds, partnerships and family offices. His client base also includes industries such as farming and ranching, manufacturing, construction, transportation, and real estate. Tipton is a member of the TSCPA, AICPA, Young Professionals in Energy (YPE), ADAM Energy, Tarrant Alliance Group, Inc., and the Texas Tech Alumni Association. He is involved with the Council of Petroleum Accountants Society and served as their Technical chair last year. Tipton earned a BBA in accounting from Texas Tech University and did post-graduate work at the University of North Texas.

Justin Wetzler, CPA, advises clients in all tax related matters including taxation of Subchapter S Corporations, Partnerships, Multi-State Taxation, Not-for Profit Organizations, Oil and Gas Taxation, and Planning and Consulting for High Net Worth Individuals and Small Businesses.  His experience ranges from small and family-owned business to private equity funds with significant capital commitments. Wetzler’s client base ranges across multiple industries including energy, real estate, professional services and healthcare. Wetzler is a member of the AICPA, TSCPA, Wildcatters Fort Worth Chapter, Texas Young Professionals, and a Board Member for the Clayton Youth Enrichment Services, Inc.  He is active with the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce, currently leading group (C4C), and is a Graduate of the Chamber’s Leadership Development Program.  Wetzler is a Committee Member for SteerFW | Civic Engagement and is a member of the Fort Worth Club. He earned a Bachelor of Business Administration, magna cum laude, degree from St. Louis University.

John Williamson, CPA, CIA, CFE, CISA, has more than nine years of risk advisory services experience with public and private clients providing the following services: Internal Audit Outsourcing/Co‐sourcing; SOX 404 Implementations and Consulting; SOC 1/SOC 2/SOC 3/SOC for Cybersecurity; Enterprise Risk Management; Business Process & Internal Controls Optimization; Cybersecurity/Information Technology Attestation & Consulting; Financial Institution Compliance; and SEC Custody Rule Examinations.  He works with clients in the technology, financial institutions, financial services and alternative investments, manufacturing and distribution, real estate, energy, healthcare, professional services, and public sector industries.  Williamson is a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Internal Auditor, Certified Information Systems Auditor, and a Certified Fraud Examiner and is a frequent speaker and guest lecturer on internal audit and cybersecurity matters.  Williamson received a B.M. degree from Southern Methodist University, a M.S in Accounting from the University of Texas at Dallas, and a M.M. degree from Rice University.

“We are extremely proud of Tommy, Melinda, Josh, Chase, Justin, and John for reaching such a distinguished career milestone.  Their commitment to client service and the firm have been intregal to their career growth and the firm’s success,” stated Larry Autrey, Whitley Penn Managing Partner.

Tommy Byrd

Tommy Byrd, CPA

Melinda Jones

Melinda Jones, CPA

Josh Plunk

Josh Plunk, CPA

Chase Tipton

Chase Tipton, CPA

Justin Wetzler

Justin Wetzler, CPA

John Williamson

John Williamson, CPA, CIA, CFE, CISA

About Whitley Penn, LLP

Whitley Penn continues to be one of the region’s most distinguished public accounting firms.  With a strong base in Texas and a worldwide network affiliation via Nexia International, the firm is strategically positioned for continued growth both locally and internationally.  Whitley Penn has been consistently recognized as “One the Top 100 Firms in the U.S.” and “Best of the Best” by INSIDE Public Accounting.  For more information on Whitley Penn, please visit www.whitleypenn.com.

Kristen Lollar Headshot

Kristen Lollar

Director of Marketing

Phone: 469-776-3645
Email: kristen.lollar@whitleypenn.com