Tax Accounting Payroll Advisory             Our Offices

View Padgett President Roger Harris' congressional testimony on the impact of the Corporate Transparency Act and the BOI reporting requirements here.

Find an office
Skip to main content

Together, Gail Emrick and Padgett Tucson are making a difference

When Gail Emrick became the Executive Director of the Southeast Arizona Health Education Center in 2008, she knew she had a tough act to follow. After the prior director passed away, Gail said, “Her life’s work passed to me. I felt the pressure to take over since she had done so well.”  

But after serving more than a decade in the position, and partnering with Padgett Tucson, Gail’s leadership has allowed SEAHEC to celebrate over 35 years of success as an award-winning nonprofit organization serving some of Arizona’s most vulnerable populations. “We work to improve the health of border and migrant communities, both long-time residents and citizens, as well as new arrivals,” she said. “I love what I do.” 

SEAHEC focuses its work in three major areas: advocacy, research and action. A key component of their work is service learning, by offering week-long courses for students from universities like Columbia and Mount Sinai. “We get to train our future health workforce through the services they come provide in our communities,” Gail said.  

From federal and state grants to frequent audits in the public record, being a non-profit organization means that SEAHEC has somewhat complicated finances to manage. It was crucial for Gail to have a trusted accounting partner.  

Gail Emrick stands with her arm around Linda Parent

She explains, “I was looking for an accountant who was knowledgeable in nonprofits and could handle the growth and flexibility of nonprofit accounting.” When they met over eight years ago, Linda Parent was the accountant Gail was looking for. “We have a really trusting relationship, and we’ve been together ever since.” 

SEAHEC operates in 6 rural counties in Arizona, and last year, the organization had over a million dollars in grants to manage. “Linda treats my finances like they were hers,” Gail said. “She knows my staff by name. She knows my budget. I have an audit every other year, and every audit I have, I passed with flying colors. I provide quarterly financials to a board of directors as well, and Linda will virtually join our board meetings to answer any questions they have. She’s so accessible. It’s just really impressive.” 

As part of the health industry, SEAHEC was financially impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, bringing in extra funding and many new grants. “About a year and a half ago, I essentially doubled the size of my organization,” Gail said. “Padgett was able to take that on with no difficulty. They treated me the same both before and after I was bringing in a million dollars in grants.”

But for Gail, the perfect accounting partner is about more than accurate financials—it’s about trust and respect. When Gail made a short documentary about the people she works with and why they migrate, Linda, Michale, and the Padgett Tucson office hosted a lunch for them to all gather and watch her documentary together. “I feel like their office really respects the work that we do, and that’s really important to me,” she said. 

For other business owners, especially nonprofits, Gail emphasizes the importance of understanding your financials. “For a new business owner or a new director, that relationship with your finance person is just critical,” she said. “I don’t view this as a business; it’s a passion. But the business side of a nonprofit is so important. In the nonprofit world, it’s your responsibility and duty to treat donated funds very respectfully. The best way to get continued funding is to do a good job the first time and treat every community member with the dignity they deserve. It’s really important to choose the right accounting firm, with a solid relationship and someone you can trust.” 

Gail’s job is often chaotic with no typical days. But between staying offline when not at work, recharging through fitness, and her relationship with Padgett, she isn’t worried. “I would never leave [Padgett] as long as I’m doing business because I’ve been treated with the utmost respect and as a friend. I sleep well at night knowing they’re managing our money.” 

We encourage you to contact us with any questions.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.