Alumni Spotlight Don Sprouse

Alumni Spotlight Don SprouseI graduated from the University of South Alabama with a degree in Accounting in 1995.  I began my corporate accounting career with no intention of sitting for the CPA exam.  However, after several years, it was apparent to me that I needed to get this professional certification even though I was not in public accounting.  In 2001, I went back to USA to take the additional courses necessary to attain the 150 hour requirement for the CPA exam.  While I was very confident in my accounting skills, I was concerned about being out of the classroom for six years.  I was not surprised at how the professors at USA were so helpful in supporting me getting the necessary credits to sit for the exam.  After I received my additional credits, I was very fortunate to pass all four parts of the CPA exam at one time.  This was only possible with the help and encouragement of the USA staff.  Their commitment showed me they cared about their past students as much as their current students. 

In 2003, I began my career at Evonik Industries (Degussa at the time) as a Senior Accountant.  In 2004, I was promoted to a Manager.  During the years 2004 -2012, I continued to take on additional responsibility for other areas of Accounting, including Cost Accounting, General Ledger and Fixed Assets.  In 2012, I was the Director of Accounting for North America. 

In February 2015, I relocated with Evonik Industries to Frankfurt, Germany for a two-year assignment.   I am currently the Global Head of Credit Risk Management, Accounts Receivable and Treasury for Evonik Industries AG located in Frankfurt, Germany.  In this role, I am responsible for the Accounting processes and procedures used globally.  With global responsibility, I have regular communication and collaboration with all regions of the world in all time zones.  A typical day for me is spending my mornings on the phone with our Asia region colleagues and the afternoons on the phone with the Americas region colleagues.  It can be a hectic schedule, but I enjoy the fast-paced global environment I work in. 

Throughout my career, I have tried to give back to USA in several ways.  I served on the MCOB Accounting Advisory Board for six years.  In 2006, I worked closely with the MCOB Accounting department to establish the Evonik Internship Program, which is still in place today. 

My wife, Paulette, also graduated from USA.  We both fully support USA through the USA Alumni Association, USA Baseball season tickets holders and any other way possible.  However, our biggest show of support and endorsement for USA is that both of our daughters are full time students at USA.  They are both very involved in campus activities and community projects as members of the Alpha Omicron Pi Sorority.  It is great to see them involved in the campus life that is offered at USA.  I am a definitely a believer in this institution and faculty!


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