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Accounting & Business Advisors | Certified Public Accountants

Government Audits & Non-Profit Audits Division

Our accounting firm has earned a strong reputation for performing timely, professional audits for city and county governments as well as water, sewer and other public authorities throughout North Georgia. Going beyond standard audit practice, we provide extensive analysis and recommendations to strengthen internal controls and improve efficiency and operation. 

Your professional audit partner

Why take a chance with your audit? With Rushton as your audit partner, you’ll never take a chance. Rushton offers a full range of proven auditing services to help governments, private businesses and non-profits strengthen and grow their futures. We make it our business to be knowledgeable and up to date on rapidly changing accounting standards, rules and regulations — many of which carry stiff penalties for non-compliance. At Rushton, we have the track record and expertise to guide you through the process with confidence. We pay attention to every detail, so you don’t have to. 

Our team, which includes three “Certified Fraud Examiners” (CFE), also excels in investigation of fraud and litigation support through forensic accounting. We provide internal control consulting to ensure that safeguards such as proper supervision and sign-off on financial procedures are in place to avoid mismanagement or fraud. 

The Rushton audit team edge

  • Oversight by experienced CPAs.
  • Extensive experience with municipal and county governments and public utilities with budgets from $10 million up to $75 million.
  • Team is highly trained in government accounting standards.
  • Provides GASB 34 consulting services, including capital assets and infrastructure.
  • Skilled at forensic accounting.
  • Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE)
  • GAO Yellow Book and OMB A-133 audits.
  • Expertise in internal controls and efficiencies.
  • Guidance in compliance with State of Georgia regulations

Some of our audit clients:

Georgia cities represented: Lavonia, Gainesville, Royston, Elberton, Norcross, Carnesville.
Counties: Habersham, White, Franklin.
Churches: Free Chapel and Lakewood Baptist churches in Gainesville.
Non-profits: North Georgia Community Foundation, Boys & Girls Clubs of Athens, Girl Scouts of Northeast Georgia and the Professional Association of Georgia Educators. 

J. Chris Hollifield, CPA – Managing Partner

As Managing Partner of Rushton, Chris manages audits for governments and nonprofit groups. A graduate of the University of Georgia, he has been with Rushton since 1994 and a partner since 1997.

Chris most enjoys interacting with clients and helping them work through situations to achieve their goals. He holds memberships in a number of professional organizations and is actively involved in the community. His volunteer work includes serving on the Finance and Audit Committee of Northeast Georgia Health System, Treasurer for CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates for Children), board member and Finance Committee of Georgia Mountains YMCA, and board member and Finance Committee of Trinity United Methodist Church.

Clay Pilgrim, CPA, CFE –Audit Partner

Having worked in the industry since 2005, Clay Pilgrim specializes in nonprofit and governmental entities. Certified as a Fraud Examiner as well as in Financial Forensics, Clay oversees audits as well as performing training for government, nonprofit and business clients throughout the state of Georgia.

A busy individual, Clay still finds time to devote to numerous civic endeavors like the United Way of White County and the White County Parks and Recreation, where he is a youth basketball coach.

At the professional level, he is the Georgia Society of Certified Public Accountants (GSCPA) Educational Foundation Treasurer, Chair of the Investment Committee, and Chair of the Golf Tournament Task Force.

He has taught audit classes as well as a Fraud Examination class at University of North Georgia, where he graduated with a degree in Accounting.

Nick Bruner, CPA, CFE, CVA - Audit Partner

As the partner responsible for corporate audits and consulting, Nick manages the preparation of reviewed financial statements for for-profit entities as well as audits of financial statements and employee benefit plans. When he is not performing audits and reviews, Nick assists clients with a wide array of consulting engagements from internal control and systems review to business plans and forecasted financial statements. As a Certified Fraud Examiner and Certified Valuation Analyst, Nick provides litigation support and business valuations for a multitude of applications. He also maintains International Audit Standards for the firm and educates the write-up and tax staff on new accounting standards and financial statement presentation.

Non-profit audits

Our strong audit reputation extends beyond those for city and county governments to numerous non-profit agencies and private businesses in the region. Again, going beyond standard non-profit audit practice, we provide extensive analysis and recommendations to strengthen internal controls and improve efficiency and operation.