Ascend N. California - Member
Kinman Tong is a partner with Moss Adams, where he serves a diverse spectrum of not-for-profit organizations and governmental entities. He provides assurance and consulting services to educational institutions, research organizations, community health centers, federally qualified health centers (FQHCs), foundations, international non-governmental organizations, social welfare organizations and ancillary health care providers/organizations.
He serves on Moss Adams’ Inclusion & Diversity Board and is the executive sponsor of the firm’s Asian and PRiDE business resource groups (BRG). In 2021, he was honored by the San Francisco Business Times as one of its OUTstanding Voices for being a leader who is out and making a difference in the business world.
Kinman is actively involved as a board member of Asian Health Services (Oakland), Aurora Theatre Company (Berkeley) and Berkeley-Haas Alumni Council.
Current Residence: Berkeley, California
Birthplace: Klang, Selangor in Malaysia
Why did you join Ascend?
I was encouraged by Ascend President Anna Mok and others to join National Asian American Society of Accountants (NAASA) in 2007 when it was founded, given how it would help develop me professionally as a CPA. I am passionate about giving back to students and helped launch the UC Berkeley Ascend Chapter back then, as well.
As a partner and leader at Moss Adams, I wanted to give back to the Pan-Asian community of accounting/finance professionals and pay-it-forward as others have done for me when I reunited with Ascend a few years ago.
What do you look forward to as a member of Ascend?
I look forward to Ascend taking a bigger role in addressing the intersectionality of diversity and addressing how we can work collaboratively with women, BIPOC and LGBTQ+ professional organizations in accounting and finance to ensure that we help create a welcoming and inclusive environment and community for everyone – not just Pan-Asians.
Share a favorite moment from your time with Ascend.
My favorite recent moment was leading my Moss Adams’ Asian BRG at the Ascend Convention at Disneyland. It was exciting to meet so many like-minded professionals around the country, coming together for networking, development and creating a world of “iBELONG.” It was exciting to see how everyone was so welcoming and encouraging, especially to a lot of the first time attendees.
Kinman with the Moss Adams' Asian BRG leaders hanging out with Mickey Mouse at the Ascend National Convention
What book(s) do you typically recommend others to read and why?
I love books that are forward-thinking, actionable, relatable and provide new or renewed insights to culture, society and community – and a lot of them are focused on my passion for belonging, inclusion, diversity, equity and justice. Some of my recent favorites are How to Be An Inclusive Leader, Minor Feelings and The Person You Mean To Be.
The book that I’m currently in love with is brand new and is super exciting and engaging – Becoming a Changemaker by Alex Budak, which I encourage everyone to read as it is so relevant and important. It reminds us that we all have the potential to lead positive change and encourages all of us to take action.
Tell us about your family.
I was born and raised in Malaysia, so all my family are Malaysian of Chinese descent. Both my parents’ ancestors came from the Fujian Province, my mom’s family specifically from Putian. My extended families are spread all over the world, with big concentrations in Australia, Malaysia and the United States (specifically in California). Rounding out my amazing family is my partner, Patrick, and our three cat-children (Leia, Moana, and Mochi).
Our last big family reunion was in Sydney, Australia where three generations from all over the world met up to celebrate Christmas and ring in the 2018 New Year.
Are you a collector or hobbyist? Tell us about it.
I am an amateur lepidopterist and enjoy my collection of marantaceae plants and succulents. As an amateur lepidopterist, I collect butterflies and moths and display them in my home. Thanks to the pandemic, family, friends and colleagues have enjoyed my love for them as they join me on Zoom/Teams/WebEx video-conferencing where they are proudly displayed in my background. I have a pretty extensive collection of matantaceae plants and succulents, which increased significantly during the pandemic. My dream is to find a calathea musaica to add to my collection!
What’s something most folks don’t know about you?
I love to travel and explore the various sights and cultures that each country/state/city have. As such, I made it a goal is to visit every continent sooner than later. I just have two left, Africa and Antarctica. So, let me know if anyone has tips or suggestions in exploring both of those very large and diverse continents!
Any additional fun facts about yourself you’d like to add?
During the pandemic, I was re-introduced to the world of Pokemon Go. Pokemon Go has brought a whole new meaning to exploring new areas of any city or location by adding this virtual world element. It has also connected me with so many other Pokemon Go fanatics locally and all around the world. If you’re a fellow enthusiast, feel free to reach out and add me as a friend, so that we can battle, raid, send/receive gifts and trade together!
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