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Carol Fries

SALT Practice

My personal bio has to include the life of juggling the raising of five children while attending college (mostly nights) working, and being a partner with my husband in our joint business ventures.

Always having an interest in art I worked as a color consultant for Minnesota Paints Co. From there I advanced to selling for a high end furniture dealer, Olson Planned Interiors. My college classes continued and were related to this occupation.

When we purchased a farm I realized that I needed more education in accounting and tax preparation so branched over to tax accounting classes and was approached by H & R Block to work for them. When the 1973 tax season was over I was recruited by Gerry Caulfield, the MN. Dept. of Revenue Director for work designing and writing instructions for individual tax, and corporate tax. Ultimately I became an office tax auditor.

In 1984 I moved to the Sales Tax division and in a few years became a Senior Tax Specialist. Opportunities arose for promotions but I loved the challenge of working in the “field “and was assigned the largest cases where I could conduct statistical audits. This to me was the ultimate challenge of auditing since unlike other auditors I was allowed to adjust the statistical audit parameters to what I thought was fair and representative to the taxpayer.

In 2007 I retired from the Dept. of Revenue and in a few months went to work as an independent contractor for ThreeFive Inc. This move was perfect for me as the CEO, Steve Erickson acknowledged the skills I had acquired working 23 years as a sales tax auditor and the 10 previous years as an income tax auditor.  My contribution to ThreeFive has primarily been tax research (MN. and other states) and basic client communication skills as well as “field work” identifying potential tax refunds.