Luke started his career in Northern New South Wales as a trainee in the audit department of a regional firm. In 1999 he made the decision to move back to Mackay to be closer to family at which time he started his journey with Connole Carlisle. Luke completed his university degree before taking a 12 month working holiday in the UK. While in the UK Luke worked for EY and assisted on the audit of various large, well know British companies. In 2005 Luke once again returned to Mackay and recommenced with Connole Carlisle. After completing the rigorous CA program to become a Chartered Accountant in 2008, he became a partner in 2010.
Luke has a wide range of clients , however a large number of Luke’s clients are in the mining services sector, many of which are long-term clients. Luke jokes that he often feels like he has taken too good a care of his clients because he sometimes feels like a part of their business more-so than ours. But this confirms how vital Luke is to their business because his clients never make a move without first consulting him.
Integrity is a big part of Luke’s work ethic. He prides himself of being direct and honest with his clients. And, he’s not afraid to have the frank discussions that others may fear because he knows that at the end of the day, looking after his clients is his priority.
Away from work, Luke loves spending time with his family. Having three daughters, Luke, with his wife are constantly running kids to and from after school activities and sporting commitments. Luke also loves to travel with his family and sadly admits he is Brisbane Broncos tragic.
Partner – BBus, FCA
0402 323 602
Brett started at Connole Carlisle as a fresh-faced accountant in 1995. It didn’t take long for him to establish his value with the firm, and he quickly advanced through the ranks to become a Partner in 1999.
As someone interested in business and numbers, accountancy was a natural career projection for Brett. He has now found his niche giving advice to business owners and helping them structure their business for success and growth. Assisting clients to launch their business, and then watching them achieve success, is one of the most fulfilling aspects of Brett’s job.
Clients come to Brett for his experience and expertise in business accounting. But they return for his friendly and relaxed approach. His ability to see through the mess to find the root of a complication coupled with his no-fuss attitude, calms clients and reinforces their trust in his skills.
Brett goes above and beyond for his clients, sometimes literally. Every few months, he schedules travel to Rockhampton, Emerald and Brisbane to see his clients.
As an avid sports fan, Brett spends his downtime watching whatever sport he can find. However, if given a choice, he will always return to NRL or basketball. When the urge gets too much, Brett will take to the court for a social game of basketball, although, by his own admission, his skills in this department could use some work.
Partner – BBus, CA, CPA, DipFP
0408 747 412
Jenny is an example of the way Connole Carlisle nurtures the growth of team members. She started with the firm in 1989 as a trainee accountant and became a Partner in 2009.
Throughout her earlier years with the firm, Jenny completed her CPA and Chartered status and, more recently, a Diploma of Financial Planning.
By her admission, Jenny likes things to balance and make sense. This is why she is so proficient at auditing company books and reviewing tax or superannuation funds. She also has a passion for developing business strategies and plans.
Many of Jenny’s clients are business owners who have been with her since her beginnings with the firm. Some owners are also second-generation clients. Knowing how she has helped set up these businesses for longevity gives Jenny immense pride in her work.
Away from work, Jenny’s mind absorbs all it can. Jenny will read anything that piques her interest. Just don’t ask her to read anything fictitious. When not reading, Jenny is in the outdoors, usually at the beach, in the boat or motor bike riding through the bush.
Partner – BAcc
0437 023 783
Kaye is Connole Carlisle’s expert in all things bookkeeping. She started her career with the firm in 2000, working two days a week in the accounting department and the other three doing the bookwork. After a year of this juggling act, Kaye refocused solely to the accountant side of the business while working toward completing her accounting degree; which she obtained in 2010.
Numbers have always made sense to Kaye, which is why she loves bookkeeping. Not wanting to move too far away from the work she loves, Kaye has moulded her position within the firm to ensure she maintains that bookkeeping connection. Now, she works closely with small to medium-size businesses to aid them with their tax and management accounting.
Kaye’s relatability is one of the things her clients appreciate most about her. She works closely with her clients, explaining all the necessary steps in a manner which they understand. This reduces the chances of her clients feeling overwhelmed by the information overload, which can sometimes occur when discussing tax.
Her commitment to her clients is undeniable. Kaye often goes above and beyond to help others, including meeting with clients outside of hours or over skype: whatever they need.
On the weekends, Kaye is all about family. With her eldest daughter recently returning to Mackay, Kaye now relishes the opportunity to bond with her grandsons. Together they enjoy the outdoors working in the garden or digging their toes in the sand at some of Mackay’s most beautiful beaches.
Partner – BAcc, CA, DipFP
0438 222 237
Lionel originally joined the Connole Carlisle team in 2007 as a trainee accountant whilst studying to become an accountant. When he finished his BAcc in 2011, he launched into study for his Chartered Accountant status which he received in January 2014. Lionel became a partner in 2018.
Over the past couple of years, Lionel has been working closely with our his fellow Partner, John Murphy, in the tourism side of the practice. It was a natural fit for Lionel as he was able to combine two of his loves: travel and accounting. When he is chatting with his clients about their travels and different cultural experiences, it doesn’t feel like work. And, Lionel’s easy-going, approachable nature is why his clients love him so much and why he doesn’t mind receiving text messages from clients over the weekend.
Lionel’s commitment to studying while working and then, upon completion, launching into learning niched accounting practices such as marine tourism, the hospitality industry and auditing, is a testament to his dedication. His philosophy of ‘stick with it because you will eventually get there’ is what got him through. His clients are reaping the rewards of his commitment to hard work, as they know that he is the one to make this happen urgently.
In his downtime you will find Lionel spending time with friends and family. Recently, Lionel’s time has been spent with his new French Bulldog puppy, Charlie.
Partner – Bacc, CA
0401 322 244
Krystal isn’t your typical accountant. For starters, if she is on a teleconference, she frequently has to justify her age and qualifications because she sounds young. But that is part of her charm. Krystal exudes both youthful exuberance and the passion of someone who loves their job.
Growing up in Koumala, surrounded by a large group of friends and family, Krystal knew she was onto a good thing. So, when it came time to graduate school, she chose not to leave the region. While her friends went off to university, Krystal opted to get a traineeship. But, Krystal wasn’t content with just any traineeship. She wanted one which would set her up for a fulfilling career.
Many years later, Krystal completed her accounting degree, all the while obtaining hands-on experience as a trainee accountant with Connole Carlisle. She has recently completed studies to become a Chartered Accountant.
Unlike some of our other accountants, Krystal isn’t niched into one industry. Her interests lie in taxation services which affords her the flexibility to provide advice to businesses across many industries.
While the industries may be different, Krystal still adopts the same approach to her work. Her first step is always to get a thorough understanding of the client’s business and their affairs. In doing so, this allows Krystal to give her clients the correct advice, first time and to talk to them on their terms.
Principal Consultant – BBus, FCA (Australia), CA (Singapore), JP (Qual)
0401 049 059
John is Connole Carlisle’s second-longest serving member, having started with the firm in May 1992. Given his tenure, it may be surprising to know that accounting wasn’t on John’s radar until his mid-20s.
In his early career, John worked for National Australia Bank, and finished his time there as a Rural Finance Analyst in the Mackay District Office. It was through the bank that he met one of our founding partners, Denis Connole. Denis invited John to join the firm and, at the age of 25, John joined Connole Carlisle.
By the time he reached 32, John had completed his degree and “Professional Year” studies to become a Chartered Accountant. He, and Brett Quinn, were appointed as partners in September 1999, and John was appointed Managing Partner when Denis Connole announced his retirement in 2005.
Throughout his career, John has maintained a strong client focus. He prides himself on being a man who doesn’t offer Band-Aid solutions; rather, John prefers to find the core problem and work for a solution from there. And, no matter the difficulty, he will keep working to achieve a suitable end result.
John was instrumental in establishing our practice in Singapore, after qualifying as a Singapore CA in 2017. Prior to COVID-19, John spent around half of his time in Singapore servicing the firm’s expanding Asian client base, with the remainder of the time spent in Mackay with his family and dogs. Once restrictions lift, John will recommence travel to Singapore, initially on a reduced schedule.
John will retire from the partnership on 01 July 2021. Click here to learn about his ongoing commitment to the firm.
At Connole Carlisle we have a broad range of accountants made of up of trainees or graduates through to associate accountants. Each member of this team has different and complimentary skills. And, each of these accountants can be trusted to provide advice on any number of projects.
The accountants in this team, often collaborate with our Partners to help nurture the skills of the up-and-coming accountant. While each Partner does have some niche specialties or interests, they also service clients from a wide range of industries. So, having these multiple touch points allows the newer accountants to develop their skills and interests for a particularly accounting practice.
Every accountant at Connole Carlisle, from our Partners through to our trainees, practices regular accounting skills. These services include bookkeeping, preparation and lodgement of financial statements and tax returns, auditing and much more.
Client Services Team
There is a common idiom shared amongst office workers: “treat the admin staff well, and office life will be easier”. This sentiment is especially true at Connole Carlisle.
Our Client Services Team do far more than the average ‘admin’ team. This is why they have a unique title. ‘Client Services’ encompasses tasks from answering phones to preparing clients’ work at tax time. With such a wide variety of tasks, we felt that an equally unique title was needed to reflect the value of the teams’ contribution to the office.
Each member of our Client Services Team has been with Connole Carlisle for a number of years. Aside, from the team Manager, no one team member has a singular role. Instead, the workload is shared amongst the team, ensuring that each member is given the opportunity to learn and grow in their skillset and confidence. As the members learn more about accounting, they are given opportunities to provide client advice and help with basic enquiries.
It is not uncommon for members of our Client Services Team to further their career by studying accounting. Our Accountants, Associates and Partners nurture this ambition and offer assistance wherever possible. This is our way of ensuring the continued legacy of quality accountants at Connole Carlisle.