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This is Fred Ball for Zions Bank, speaking on business.
Jim Drollinger started a one-man Certified Public Accounting firm 36 years ago in Vernal. He had been raised in Roosevelt but wanted to live in Vernal, so he rented a one-room office and started working seven days a week to get established.
Jim's wife did the typing and office work and Jim concentrated on his one and only account. His hard work and expertise soon garnered a solid reputation in the Uintah Basin and the client list grew and grew. Today, The CPA Firm boasts more than 2,000 clients with customers in Utah, Colorado, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, California and Texas. In fact when I went into his office he was busy scheduling a meeting in Sydney, Australia.
Computers of course are vital to any accounting practice today but in Jim's early days in the business he became a real pioneer in computer applications. He recounted to me how he would put information from little tapes onto punch cards to store and compute data. He was a licensed pilot and would frequently fly information to a computer service in Provo to help with those early day computer processing projects.
Steve Judd came on board The CPA Firm in 1976. He quickly learned from Jim and became an active partner in the highly regarded firm.
Jim and Steve work primarily in the tax field and attend seminars five to six weeks per year to keep up with all of the tax code changes. Of course they have considerable contact with the IRS and Jim and Steve feel there is mutual respect between both parties.
Everyone in the Basin knows Jim. He is a former mayor of Vernal and is a respected and successful farmer/rancher. He has more than 700 acres of tilled alfalfa and hay. He told me he became a farmer in his early years for "self preservation."
I really enjoyed my visit in the beautiful offices that were previously the home of Basin State Bank. The old vault is the "safest filing cabinets in the state," according to Jim.
For Zions Bank, I'm Fred Ball. I'm speaking on business.