Accounting Services

Brown EdwardsIndustriesEducation Accounting Services

Brown Edwards’ Commitment to Private Higher Education

We are committed to private higher education and its many challenges – students with greater financial needs; questions about access, affordability, and institutional value; and grave long-term financial sustainability concerns – to name a few. As you face these and future challenges, you will need an exceptional relationship with and commitment from a group of professionals who advise you and support your efforts.  At Brown Edwards, private higher education is a core focus of our Firm – we know your issues.

  • With over 40 years of experience and expertise, we are a recognized leader in the industry.  Large enough to offer comprehensive services with an emphasis on quality and highly personalized services.
  • We redefine “normal” with our “beyond the basics” value, service and highly unique deliverables.
  • Our service philosophy – quality, timely and personalized service – the “cornerstone” of our practice.
  • Round-the-clock, 24/7 commitment.
  • Reasonable and competitive fees that are a “win/win.”

Our ultimate goal is not to merely render services, but to be committed to your institution’s strategic plan and needs.

Let us introduce you to our “normal.”

Why Choose Brown Edwards?

Latest Education News From Brown Edwards

  • 2021 Private Education Virtual Conference – Session 2 Recap

    2021 Private Education Virtual Conference – Session 2 Recap The second session of Brown Edwards’ first-ever virtual conference took place on Friday, May 21, 2021 with attendees from 11 different states stretching from coast-to-coast. The session featured speakers from The

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  • 2021 Private Education Virtual Conference – Session 1 Recap

    This year, Brown Edwards is hosting our first ever, virtual conference for higher education and not-for-profit organizations. On Friday, May 7, we kicked off the conference with attendees from 16 states ranging from Virginia to Arizona! The star lineup of

    read more
  • Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II

    The Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II (HEERF II) was authorized by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2021 (CRRSAA), which was signed into law on Dec. 27, 2020. In total, the CRRSAA authorizes $81.88 billion in support

    read more

Brown Edwards Higher Education Services

Other Services

Learn more about how we can support your institutionContact One of Our Team Members

Practice Leaders

  • John C. Hash, II, CPA
    John C. Hash, II, CPA
  • Mark E. Woolwine, CPA
    Mark E. Woolwine, CPA

Team Members

  • Leslie Roberts, CPA
    Leslie Roberts, CPA
  • Valerie R. Ellis, CPA, CGMA
    Valerie R. Ellis, CPA, CGMA

What Clients SayAbout Our Accounting Services for Colleges and Universities

John C. Hash, II, CPA
(540) 345-0936
319 McClanahan St SW • Roanoke, VA, 24014-7705

John is an assurance and accounting services partner with responsibilities in the Roanoke office of Brown Edwards.  He has over eleven years of experience providing a wide range of services to not-for-profit organizations, particularly private institutions of higher education.  He has significant knowledge of the Student Financial Aid Programs provided by the Department of Education and the compliance testing associated with these programs.  John was recognized as a “Super CPA” by Virginia Business magazine in the government/nonprofit area of practice.

John graduated from James Madison University in 1993 with a Bachelor of Business Administration degree.  He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants.

Mark E. Woolwine, CPA
(540) 443-3606
1715 Pratt Dr, Ste 2700 • Blacksburg, VA, 24060

Mark is a partner in the New River Valley office of Brown Edwards.  He has over 25 years of experience in accounting and tax services including three years as the controller of a not-for-profit organization.  Mark has extensive experience working with private colleges and universities & other not-for-profit organizations, construction contractors, manufacturers and affordable housing organizations.

Mark graduated from Radford University in 1993 with a Bachelor of Business Administration with a concentration in accounting.  Mark is a Certified Public Accountant licensed in Virginia and Washington, D.C.  He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Virginia Society of Certified Public Accountants. In addition, Mark is a member of the National Association of College and University Business Officers. Mark is a frequent presenter at not-for-profit and private higher education conferences.

In addition to being an active leader in his local church and Rotary club, Mark is a member of the following boards of directors:

  • New River Land Trust
  • Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce
  • Montgomery Regional Economic Development Commission
  • Onward NRV
Leslie Roberts, CPA
Leslie Roberts
(757) 873-1033
Fountain Plaza One 701 Town Center Drive Suite 700• Newport News, VA, 23606

Leslie is a partner is our Newport News office. She has more than 30 years of accounting experience, most of which is in public accounting. She has supervised and performed audits and consulting services in various industries including higher education, state and local governmental entities, governmental authorities, boards and commissions, regional and municipal airports, government contracting, religious organizations, various non-profits including foundations, healthcare and construction contractors. She also served as Controller for a regional non-profit hospital and nursing home and has provided consulting services for healthcare clients (both long-term and acute-care facilities). A large part of Leslie’s practice requires auditing under Government Auditing Standards and ensuring compliance in accordance with OMB Circular Uniform Guidance. As such, Leslie has extensive experience and has received advanced training in these areas. Her responsibilities include engagement management, client correspondence, presentations, practice development, work-paper review, staff supervision, scheduling and consulting.

Professional Organizations

  • American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Member
  • Virginia Society of Certified Accountants, Member
  • Government Audit Quality Center, Member and Firm Liaison


  • Certified Public Accountant – NC
  • Certified Public Accountant – VA


  • Bachelor of Science, Business Administration
    University of North Carolina Chapel Hill

Industry Focus

  • Government Contracting
  • Not-for-Profit
  • Public Sector & Government
  • Education

Service Areas

  • Assurance
Valerie R. Ellis, CPA, CGMA
(304) 343-4188
300 Chase Building, 707 Virginia Street East • Charleston, WV 25301

Valerie is a partner in the Charleston office with over 30 years of professional experience in a wide variety of areas. Valerie has directed audits of many closely held businesses, employee benefit plans, energy industries, and nonprofit organizations. She has consulted with clients on matters ranging from regulatory compliance to operational issues and internal control. Her clients include professional firms, retailers, wholesalers, contractors, colleges and universities, foundations, religious organizations, and energy industries.

Valerie has been a contributing author and technical reviewer for nationally distributed publications and a featured speaker at industry conferences.

Valerie graduated summa cum laude from Marshall University with a bachelor’s degree in business administration.

Valerie is a member of the American Institute of CPAs, the West Virginia Society of CPAs where she has served as chair of various committees, and the Charleston Chapter of the West Virginia Society of CPAs. She is also a member and past treasurer of the Rotary Club of Charleston; a member of the Marshall University Division of Accountancy and Legal Environment Advisory Board, and a member of the cultivation committee for Women in Economic and Leadership Development.  She also teaches financial literacy to teenage parents through a program at her church.

Valerie was honored as the AICPA 2012 Woman to Watch–Experienced Leader by the West Virginia Society of CPAs.