Adept in the areas of government auditing for public colleges and universities, Shirley A. Henry, CPA, CGFM, CGMA, initially planned to become a teacher, but realized that may not work out for her. She than began to think back on her high school years when she took bookkeeping classes and how much she loved them. She then changed her major to accounting with a business minor, and continued to follow the path her career would take her. Since 2013, Ms. Henry has served the Division of State Audit in Nashville, Tennessee, as assistant director. She first joined the division in 1977 as a junior legislative auditor, quickly moving up the ranks to the roles of senior legislative auditor from 1977 to 1980 and legislative audit manager from 1980 to 2013.
Prior to the start of her professional life, Ms. Henry pursued a formal education at Western Kentucky University in Bowling Green, where she earned a Bachelor of Science, summa cum laude, in 1976. She later attended the Tennessee Government Executive Institute at the University of Tennessee Conference Center in Knoxville, graduating in 1996. In addition, Ms. Henry became a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in the State of Tennessee in 1981. She also became a Certified Government Financial Manager (CGFM) in 1995 and Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) in 2012.
Heavily involved in her community, Ms. Henry served as a volunteer auditor for the Christian Community Outreach Center in Old Hickory, Tennessee, from 1992 to 1995 and from 2001 to 2003, and the assistant leader, communications coordinator, vice president and treasurer of the United Methodist Women between 1992 and 2003. She was also a tutor at DuPont-Hadley Middle School in Old Hickory from 1993 to 1995, the treasurer of the Old Hickory United Methodist Church from 1995 to 2003 and a literacy volunteer in Nashville from 1996 to 1999. Furthermore, Ms. Henry served on the board of directors for the Nashville Adult Literacy Council from 1999 to 2001.
A lifetime member of the Association of Government Accountants, Ms. Henry has served the organization in a number of other roles including awards committee member, newsletter chair and membership committee member, as well as served its Nashville chapter as secretary from 2009 to 2010 and president from 2011 to 2012. Becoming the president of the Association of Government Accountants has been a major career highlight. Ms. Henry never even dreamed about holding such positions, but she was encouraged to pursue it and she is glad she did because it ended up being a great experience. Additionally, she maintains involvement with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
Ms. Henry’s greatest mentor is a woman by the name of Carolyn Dameron, who was her first in-charge auditor and the greatest professional guiding mentor she has had. In light of her myriad accomplishments, Ms. Henry is a recipient of the coveted Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award and was selected for inclusion in several editions of Who’s Who in American Politics and Who’s Who in the South and Southwest. Today, she resides in Tennessee with her loving husband of 39 years, Herman Gregg Henry, and has been known to enjoy reading, collecting antiques and cross-stitching in her spare time. She would like to be remembered as someone who gave them good opportunities and trained them well, and she is responsible and dedicated to mission in the office.