The Accounting Hall of Fame
Harry Anson Finney
The son of Solon B. and Ellen Bike Finney was born on November 19, 1886, in Postville, Iowa. He received a bachelor's degree from the University of Chicago (1913) and he was certified as a CPA in 1917 (Illinois). For his performance (highest grade) on the state CPA examination he received a gold medal from the Illinois Society of CPAs. He also received the highest grade on an examination given by the AICPA in 1919.
He practiced and taught accounting simultaneously. He began his teaching career as a high school commercial teacher. He later was a professor of accounting at the Walton School of Commerce, Chicago, and in 1920 he joined the faculty of Northwestern University where he was a professor until he retired from teaching in 1944. His practical accounting career began when he joined Haskins & Sells (1923). He later resigned to form the firm Baumann, Finney & Company. He served as a partner of the firm until he retired from practice.
Active in professional organizations, he was president of the Illinois Society of CPAs (1929-30), a member of the AICPA's Committee on Accounting Procedure (1949-53), and editor of the then Student's Department of The Journal of Accountancy (1920-28). He wrote more than 100 articles for professional journals and among his authored books are Modern Business Arithmetic with Joseph Clifton Brown (1916), Introduction to Actuarial Science (1920), Mathematics of Accounting and Finance with Seymour Walton (1921), Consolidated Statements for Holding Companies and Subsidiaries (1922), Principles of Accounting - Introductory (1923), Intermediate (1924) and Advanced (1924), and Lawyer's Guide to Accounting with Richard Oldberg (1955). He collaborated with Herbert E. Miller on later editions of the above three-volume series of Principles of Accounting, which has sold in aggregate more than two million copies. In 1957 he received the Alpha Kappa Psi Foundation Accounting Award. He was also affiliated with the AAA, Beta Alpha Psi, Beta Gamma Sigma, and Delta Sigma Pi.
He married Lois Ingram on November 24, 1920; they had three children. He later married Hazel M. Hale (February 9, 1946). In his leisure time he enjoyed inland and deep sea fishing, and horseback riding. He died May 8, 1966 at the age of 79.