CEO & Founder – CPA/PFS, CGMA, CFP®
30+ years of marriage and 1 son, Felipe
4 continents visited multiple times
3 passions: board governance, entrepreneurship, travel
She’s an award-winning CEO and entrepreneur, but Carmen’s leadership style is different from what you might expect. In contrast to the power-hungry, high-fallutin’ stereotypes of an Executive, Carmen’s leadership style is characterized by servitude for her clients, a focus on big-picture objectives, and an utterly sincere desire for her clients and employees to succeed. Plus, as a leukemia and bone marrow transplant survivor (who initially was given only a week to live after her diagnosis), Carmen’s heartfelt drive for giving back to the community is apparent. Despite her busy schedule, she not only donates a big portion of her time to volunteering and serving on boards, but she actively encourages her employees to do the same. So what about that long list of awards that Carmen has received? The recognition is not her motivation for her work in the community; it is simply a result of it.
Carmen is the Chief Executive Officer of The Aguiar Group, which she founded in Bellevue in 1993. Before starting her firm seventeen years ago, Carmen worked in the tax department at Ernst & Young LLP in New York and Seattle. She has since grown The Aguiar Group into a nine-person, award-winning CPA firm offering tax, financial accounting, and consulting services to individuals, families, entrepreneurs, and small businesses in the Seattle area. She enjoys presentations in different venues from major corporations to small organizations. Her passion for travel has taken her to across countries and continents, a passion instilled by her father that you always learn more from travel than books.
Carmen has a passion for governance and regularly serves on corporate, not-for-profit, and government boards. She holds a certificate from the National Association of Corporate Directors. Carmen currently serves on the Foundation Board of the Washington State Society of Certified Public Accountants and on the Risk Management Committee of Camico Insurance. Carmen has in the past served as a director and chairman on the Board of Directors of Plaza Bank, a commercial bank serving the Latino community in Washington. She has also served as chairman of the Washington Society of Certified Public Accountants, governing council member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and St. Madeleine Sophie Pastoral Council. Other past board involvement includes Federal Home Loan Bank of Seattle, the Bellevue Rotary Club, City of Bellevue Parks and Community Services, Bellevue YouthLink, Bellevue Community College Advisory Council, and East King County Estate Planning Council. She has also served on committees, councils, and task forces for numerous organizations, including the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the Internal Revenue Service District Director’s Forum, Small Business Administration National Advisory Council, and the Bellevue Entrepreneur Center. She also served as a member of the Corporate Responsibility Panel for President Bush’s Economic Summit in 2002.
As a result of her involvement, Carmen has earned numerous awards, including the President’s Award and the Vincent Gervais Public Service Award in 1999 for her commitment and service to the Washington Society of Certified Public Accountants. She has also been featured as a Puget Sound Business Journal “40 under 40” Honoree in 2003, was granted the Bellevue Business and Professional Women’s Woman of the Year Award.
Carmen is fluent in Spanish and earned a Bachelor of Arts in Accounting from Hunter College of The City University of New York. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, National Association of Corporate Directors, and Bellevue Rotary.