Steve Kawash, ‘78
“When it was time for me to go to college, our family situation necessitated that I stay in Charleston and MHC was the best choice. I had two sisters that were already enrolled at MHC and the school had an excellent business and accounting program.” Subsequent to his enrollment at MHC, his three younger siblings also enrolled and graduated from MHC/UC – more on this unique Golden Eagle Family to come in future newsletters.
In addition to getting a great education, joining the Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity had a great impact on Steve’s life. “It allowed me to meet fellow students from around the country and I made lifelong friends with whom I still maintain a close relationship. Despite the fact that several of them live throughout the US and other countries, we are still able to connect on social media, as well as meet in person periodically. Many of them attended homecoming this year.”
During his time at Morris Harvey College/University of Charleston, Steve was active in student government and many business and social clubs. He graduated summa cum laude in 1978 with a Bachelor of Science degree in business administration and later obtained a master’s in business administration from the West Virginia College of Graduate Studies.
Steve is a retired partner of Brown, Edwards and Company CPAs where he was a partner in the firm’s tax practice. He began his public accounting career in 1978 with Ernst & Whinney (E&W) where he worked in the audit and tax departments. He worked closely with owners of small privately-owned companies and was selected by the firm to coordinate the formation of a separate privately-owned and emerging business department in the Charleston office. In 1992, Steve co-founded Gibbons & Kawash, CPAs where he specialized in tax planning and compliance, including business mergers and acquisitions, succession planning, and estate and gift tax planning.
A lifelong resident of Charleston, Steve is committed to serving his community. He was one of the initial board members of the Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences, is past president and Board member of the Charleston Exchange Club, Treasurer of Edgewood Country Club, Treasurer and Board member of MATRIC, Treasurer and Board member of Mid-Atlantic Holding Company, former Board member of the Kanawha-Charleston Soccer Foundation, initial Board member of the McGee Foundation and Treasurers of Thomas Health System. Steve is also a member of the American Institute of CPAs, the West Virginia Society of CPAs (WVSCPAs), and the Charleston Chapter of the WVSCPAs. He has been active in coaching youth sports, including basketball, soccer and baseball.
Steve was inducted into the University of Charleston Alumni Gallery of Achievement in 2015 and is a current UC Alumni Association member.
Our 2023 Alumnus of the Year currently resides in Charleston with his wife, Perri, and has 3 sons and 1 grandson.