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The auditor par excellence

Peggy Gouskos, BComm 96, GrDip 97
July 4, 2022
By Charlie Fidelman

Chartered Professional Accountant Peggy Gouskos knows how to lead a financial statement audit with integrity. Over the course of her 25-year career, the Concordia alumna and partner at KPMG in Montreal has accumulated a wealth of experience untangling a range of complex issues for her clients.

Gouskos’s KPMG co-workers across Canada deserve a lot of the credit for her success, she says: “I feel fortunate to have been surrounded by so many talented people.”

Gouskos, who now pays it forward as a mentor for younger professionals in her field, says she will never forget the first time she signed off an auditors’ report as a partner.

“When you sign off as a partner it represents the final check. Your signature is the assumption of the ultimate responsibility, so that was a momentous career accomplishment.”

Job satisfaction

“My job affords me opportunities to learn new things all the time. My clients and team have helped me grow and evolve professionally and personally — and that’s made me what I am today.”

Career challenge

“I started with smaller audits for private companies, some of which were mom-and-pop shops. Then I shifted to national and international public company audits, which came with more complexities. It was like going from practicing general medicine to performing open-heart surgery. I had to take a step back, adapt and educate myself to be able to handle that pivot.”

The Concordia factor

“I was part of the first accountancy cohort enrolled in the Institute for Co-operative Education. This gave me internship experience as a student that proved to be life-changing.”

Career start

“I got a summer job as a receptionist and was really lousy at it. The company’s comptroller, a chartered accountant, moved me to the accounting department. I loved it. That led me to apply to Concordia’s business school.”

Inspiring professors

Wendy Roscoe, Gail Fayerman, Emilio Imbriglio, I can’t single one out. They were brilliant and possessed different teaching styles. But what they had in common was an ability to make the material interesting while challenging students to do better — and that’s rare.”

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