Tony Machi, CPA, MBA

As a Director in SN’s Government Contract Services practice area, Tony knows AE deeply, having long served at senior levels within the governmental and financial compliance function of one of the largest engineering firms in the U.S. He has become nationally recognized as a foremost expert on Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) strategy and compliance and firm profitability by peers in the ACEC/AASHTO audit community.


  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA), Accounting and Finance from Duquesne University
  • MBA, Accounting from Duquesne University

Professional and Community Highlights

  • ACEC/AASHTO Task Forces, Member

Kate Allen, PE, MBA

Kate’s 25 years of experience in the Architecture and Engineering industry includes leadership roles as a Consultant, Principal-in-Charge, and National Engineering Director. Her primary focus is on helping clients with transition strategies including ownership transition and mergers and acquisitions. Kate applies a “lead with people” approach as she partners with firms to successfully anticipate and prepare for their future. 


  • B.A. in Psychology from University of Colorado Denver
  • B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from University of Colorado Denver
  • MBA, General Business and Finance from University of Denver – Daniels College of Business

Professional and Community Highlights

  • ACEC-COVertical Design Committee member and sustaining member 
  • A3LC Liaison Committee member 

Kelly Morningstar, CPA, MBA

Kelly is an experienced director who serves clients with tax compliance, planning, and strategic tax advisory services in a wide range of industries including architecture and engineering, manufacturing and distribution, and government contractors. She has worked extensively with corporations, pass-through entities, multi-state returns, individuals, IRS and state correspondences, and accounting for income taxes under ASC 740. Additionally, Kelly has specialized expertise in helping firms to enhance their cash flow by utilizing the research and development tax credit.


  • BS degree in Accounting from Mount St. Mary’s University, cum laude
  • MBA from Mount St Mary’s University

Valerie Higgins

As Managing Director of Project Management & Ajera Consulting, Val brings over 25 years of accounting, consulting, and business management experience in the industry. With specialized expertise in project management, Val works collaboratively with firms to apply best practices, maximize workflow processes and utilize enhanced reporting for increased efficiency and profitability.

Serving for several years as the Controller and Managing Vice President of an MPE engineering firm, Val possesses valuable “in the field” knowledge of the business nuances of a professional services firm. An accomplished speaker, she is a frequent presenter at national industry conferences.


  • BSA degree in Accounting from the University of Phoenix

Professional Highlights

  • Certified Ajera Professional, Deltek University

What Motivates Val

The synergy created by marrying best practices, efficiencies with tools, and working within the creative culture each client brings to the equation.

Certified Ajera ProfessionalDeltek Ajera Project Accountant Foundation EmblemDeltek Ajera Financial Foundation Emblem



Phil Keeney

Phil leads the Stambaugh Ness TechSolutions team, providing technology consulting and implementation to over 800 clients, including the architecture, engineering, manufacturing, governmental, and healthcare industries. Working closely with clients, Phil develops innovative solutions to contribute to the company’s growth and profitability.

Always thinking strategically, Phil frequently performs client technology process assessments to fully understand their current needs and where they want to be in the future.

Phil manages and deploys technology initiatives for clients via ERP, EDI, and CRM, as well as developing and managing all aspects of their technological infrastructure, technology inventory, and staff. His years of experience also include performing IT security audits, intrusion/penetration testing, and long-term strategic planning.


  • The Pennsylvania State University
  • YTI Career Institute

Ask Phil About

The time gasoline was the drink of choice.

Steve Snyder, CPA, CCIFP

As Director, Steve’s concentration is on assisting clients within the architecture, engineering, construction and real estate development industries to improve internal processes and maximize profitability. Clients also benefit from his extensive experience auditing employee benefit plans ranging from 100 to 20,000 employees. In addition to his technical competence, Steve is an avid Penn State football fan and expert tailgater.

Before entering his career in accounting Steve proudly served in the U.S. Army as a Satellite Communication Specialist. Afterward, he spent 6 years in Stuttgart, Germany working for a family-owned construction-related business and speaks fluent German.


  • BS degree in Accounting from the University of Maryland

Professional & Community Highlights

  • Certified Construction Industry Financial Professional (CCIFP)
  • Leadership York, Board of Directors, Former Treasurer
  • Cultural Alliance of York, Board of Directors, Treasurer

Steve’s Best Advice

Kill them with kindness, it’s contagious.

Jennifer G. Nelson, CPA, MBA

Jennifer leads clients through the complex world of federal, state and international taxation of corporations, partnerships and individuals. Additionally, she provides tax research, consultation, and compliance in the areas of accounting methods, international tax, multi-state taxation, tax credits, depreciation, entity selection and structure, and overall strategic tax planning and advisory services. In short, she knows a thing or two about taxes.

A tax specialist with a thing for history and the Civil War, Jennifer brings a unique perspective to her clients and with over 18 years of experience, she has seen just about every tax scenario. Her deep working knowledge of taxation has contributed to the success and profitability of clients in a diverse range of industries.


  • MBA with a concentration in Accounting from The University of Pittsburgh
  • BS degree in Health Policy and Administration from The Pennsylvania State University

Professional & Community Highlights

  • Leadership York, Graduate, and former Treasurer
  • Presenter for World Trade Center, Central PA
  • Presenter for MANTEC
  • Women & Minority Business Owners Have Many Resources, Published by Central Penn Business Journal

Jennifer Recommends This Advice

Life is Short – so buy the shoes, drink the wine and eat the dessert.