In Memoriam

Many of the opportunities and successes for black professionals in the accounting profession today were paved by NABA trailblazers who are no longer with us. We honor those legacy trailblazers, not just for what they have done for the NABA community, but for black professionals and the profession at large. 


~~~   2018   ~~~



Gregory "Greg" Ellison, Sr., CPA
February 24, 1951 - March 5, 2018

Gregory "Greg" Ellison, Sr., CPA was a charter member of the NABA Atlanta Chapter.   Mr. Ellison served as the very first Vice President of the Southern Region in the 1970.  Mr. Ellison was an active Lifetime Member with the local Atlanta chapter.  

Mr. Ellison was the Resident Partner in-charge of the Atlanta office for Banks, Finley, White & Co.  In 1984, Mr. Ellison was appointed by Governor Joe Frank Harris to the Georgia State Board of Accountancy. His most significant contribution to the Board was chairing the Report Monitoring Committee. This committee developed legislation and implemented the state’s first quality review program for CPA firms.  He is survived by his wife of 44 years, Jeannette and they have two sons Gregory C. Ellison, II and Darren A. Ellison. 

Please visit his Legacy page to express condolences.



~~~   2017


Walter D. Davis, III, CPA
April 24, 1951 - November 20, 2017

Walter D. Davis, III, CPA, founding chairman of the Division of Firms, passed away on November 20, 2017. Mr. Davis, who operated a CPA practice in Houston, Texas, established  the Division of Firms in 1986 under the leadership of NABA's first woman president, Ramona Pearson, CPA. 

Mr. Davis was honored on March 25, 1987, with an Outstanding Texan Award from the Texas Legislative Black Caucus. Mr. Davis also served on the Texas Fifth Year Scholarship Advisory Committee for nearly 20 years. He was an instrumental member in negotiating the scholarship program with the Texas Legislature in the law requiring a fifth year of college for the CPA Exam. Texas is one of two states with such a program. 

Please visit his Legacy page to express condolences.



Walter H. Vance Jr.
January 25, 1954 - October 18, 2017

A member of the Nashville professional chapter, Walter worked at AIG American General Life for more than 20 years, primarily as Director of Audit and later as Director of IT Compliance. Walter earned his Bachelor of Science in Accounting from Freed-Hardeman University and was a Certified Public Accountant, Certified Fraud Examiner, and Certified Internal Auditor. He is survived by devoted wife, Sandra Vance; daughters, Brittany Vance and LaToya Ramsey; son, Walter Vance III; sisters; a host of other family and friends.

Please visit his Legacy page to express condolences.


Talmadge C. Tillman, Jr.
November 26, 1925 - October 6, 2017

Dr. "Tab" Talmadge C. Tillman, Jr., C.P.A., died peacefully on October 6, 2017, in Los Angeles at the age of 91. Dr. Tillman was the first African-American graduate of the MBA program at Syracuse University. He became the first African-American to earn a Ph.D. from the University of Southern California. His career included positions in the business office of Howard University in 1948 and as a department chair at Texas University in 1950. In 1951, He became a certified public accountant in Los Angeles; and in 1968 he was the Price Waterhouse Fellow professor at California State Long Beach.  

Please visit his Legacy page to express condolences. 

Kathryn K. Epps
October 3, 1969 - September 12, 2017

Dr. Epps was an amazing woman and a brilliant accounting professional. She served as the Associate Dean and Director of the School of Accountancy at Kennesaw State University (KSU). She remained active with the NABA Atlanta professional chapter and with the student members at KSU.  She was spearheading a CPA pipeline program through the GA Society of CPAs to bring NABA student members and student members from Albany State U and Savannah State U through KSUs Masters of Accountancy Program.  Dr. Epps was a recipient of The KPMG Minority Scholarship and was a member of The PhD Project Accounting Doctoral Students Association, first as a student and as faculty.  Dr. Epps was one of the very few female African-American accounting business school professors in the U.S. promoted to full professor.

Please visit her Legacy page
 to express condolences.