The Accounting Hall of Fame
Thomas Coleman Andrews
The son of Cheatham William and Dora Lee Pittman Andrews was born on February 19, 1899, in Richmond, Virginia. He received his preliminary education in the public schools of Richmond, graduating from John Marshall High School in 1916.
While his formal education ended with his graduation from high school, he has received honorary Doctor of Laws degrees from the University of Michigan (1955) and Grove City College (1963), an honorary Doctor of Commercial Science from Pace College (1954), and an honorary Doctor of Science from the University of Richmond (1955).
After graduating from high school he became an office boy at the Richmond branch of Armour & Company, meat packers. From 1918 to 1922 he was with the public accounting firm of F. W. Lafrentz & Company. He was certified as a CPA in 1921 (Virginia), and in 1922 he established his own public accounting firm, T. Coleman Andrews & Company. In 1931, he took temporary leave of his firm to serve as Auditor of Public Accounts of the Commonwealth of Virginia, a position he held until 1933. In 1938 he again took temporary leave of his firm to serve as Controller and Director of Finance of his home city, Richmond, Virginia. In 1941 he again took temporary leave of his firm to serve with the Director of the Fiscal Division in the Office of the Under Secretary of War, and in 1942, as a member of the staff of the Contract Renegotiation Division in the Office of the Under Secretary of the Navy.
In 1943 he joined the United States Marine Corps, which shortly thereafter loaned him to the Department of State to be Chief Accountant and Director of Transportation of the North African Economic Board in Algiers, which assignment he completed early in 1944; he later returned to active duty and became a member of the General Staff of Fourth Marine Aircraft Wing. He was discharged from the Marine Corps as a Major in 1945 to join the U. S. General Accounting Office to organize and become the first director of the Corporation Audits Division, which undertaking he completed in late 1947 and, thereafter, returned to his firm.
He was a founder of Bowles, Andrews & Towne, actuaries and pension fund consultants in 1948, and Andrews and Howell, management-engineering consultants in 1952. In 1953 he retired from his firms to become Commissioner of Internal Revenue, a position he held until late 1955. He was the first CPA to hold this office. In 1956 he was an Independent candidate for President of the United States. In 1965 he withdrew from all his other business connections to devote himself, with his sons, to organizing a series of enterprises in the service industry field.
He was active in professional organizations, serving as treasurer (1926-27), vice president (1948-49), and president (1950-51) of the AICPA. He was a member of its Council and Executive Committee and a member of many of its committees including those of Governmental Accounting, Budget and Finance, and Cooperation with the SEC. He was a representative of the AICPA to the Second International Congress of Accountants in Amsterdam, Holland (1926), and he was chairman of the Accounting and Auditing Study Group of the Hoover Commission (1948). Other professional affiliations included membership in AAA, Association of Government Accountants, NAA, and Virginia Society of CPAS. In 1947 he received the AICPA's Gold Medal Award. Other honors include the Department of Treasury's Alexander Hamilton Award (1955), 1st Award of the Tax Executives institute (1955), and the Silver Medallion of Virginians of Maryland (1955). He holds honorary memberships in Beta Alpha Psi, Beta Gamma Sigma, and Omicron Delta Kappa. He wrote numerous articles for professional journals.
He was active in government, civic, and community service. He was accounting member, Public Utilities Rate Study Commission of Virginia (1933); chairman, Virginia Citizens Committee for the Hoover Report; member of the Board, Richmond Memorial Hospital (1949); president, Richmond Chamber of Commerce (1958); and Trustee-Visiting Lecturer, Graduate School of Business Administration, University of Virginia (1955-56). He served as chairman of the board of many business organizations.
He married Rae Wilson Reams on October 18, 1919; they had two children. In his leisure time he enjoyed golf, hunting, fishing, and growing rhododendrons, azaleas, and kindred plants. He died October 15, 1983 at the age of 84.