pencil, inc. associates
Here are some bio’s of our team of bookkeepers, accountants and consultants, whom we call our “associates”.
Laura Allen is the founder of Pencil, Inc. and lives in Dallas, Texas with her five year old twins. She is a graduate of Dallas Baptist University with a BS in Business Administration, and is currently an MBA candidate at Southern Methodist University. She is a coffee nerd (read: addict) and loves spending time at White Rock Lake, watching the boats and feeding the ducks with the kids. She is a patron of the fine arts and her hobbies include making music, painting on occasion, and photographing her kids. At home, you’ll usually find her reading the latest Washington Post article, skimming through Twitter, or watching MSNBC. As a business management major with a background in accounting, she takes a practical, wholistic approach to business, tax and accounting management strategies, often functioning as a translator between the business owner and their CPA. She has built a tech-driven business that is helping companies migrate to cloud-based systems that ensure maximum workflow efficiency, while maintaining data security and desired business and accounting standards. Her passion is truly to support others in their endeavors, and hopes to help them setup the frameworks and systems that will facilitate their dreams coming true. Ultimately, anyone can succeed in business if you have the right tools.
Her motto: “It's not the load that breaks you down - it's the way you carry it.”
Ron has been a CPA for over 40 years with experience in both for and nonprofit entities alike. A graduate of the University of Houston and former tax partner in the KPMG Peat Marwick accounting firm, his business acumen also extends to real estate development and funding with experience reaching all the way back to the real estate crisis in the 80’s where he managed clients with $1.5 billion in debt. His current and former business interests include local, national, and international entities, and he still serves as an officer, director, and investor in many private and public companies. He has served on a number of nonprofit boards as a financial and business advisor, and has helped numerous nonprofits in their formation process. He has counseled over 1,500 individuals out of debt and is an invaluable asset to the Pencil, Inc. team.
His motto: “If you’re not having fun, you’re doing something wrong!”
Johnna Gray is the founder of our affiliate Cultivate Financial. Since graduating with an Associates in Theology degree from Christ for the Nations Institute in 2010, Johnna has had one foot in ministry and one foot in the financial realm. She has worked in accounting firms as a bookkeeper and tax assistant and while simultaneously pastoring in the local church. This unique perspective has allowed her to grow a passion for non-profits, religious or otherwise, while obtaining the knowledge and experience to navigate the full spectrum of the financial services necessary to run a non-profit. She was an adjunct professor at Christ for the Nations teaching leadership skills and development, and has previously sat on the board of a nonprofit. She resides in Dallas, TX with her husband Bryan and her high-spirited mini-me, Emma Lou.
Her Motto: “When you are tired don’t quit, rest.”