PROGRAM FOUNDER SHERRILL L. (GREGORY) TROVATO, MBA, MST, EA, USTCP developed and began teaching Preparing to Practice before the US Tax Court after passing the Tax Court exam on her first attempt in 2000. 

She is proud that more than 80% of those successful over the past nine exam cycles (2002-2018), attended her full exam cycle class series, purchased her materials, or took her review session immediately before the exam.  

She received her BA (Business Administration, Accounting), MBA (Finance), and MS (Taxation) degrees, all from California State University (Fullerton) between 1988 and 1993. She passed the SEE on her first attempt in 1991, became an enrolled agent in 1992, and a Fellow of NTPI (National Tax Practice Institute) in 2000.  After passing the 2000 Tax Court exam on her first attempt, she was admitted as a nonattorney practitioner in 2001. 

She is part of the Compass Tax Educators team that provides high quality live and on-demand webinars to tax professionals on a variety of tax topics (see

She was a regular instructor for the National Association of Enrolled Agents (NAEA) at its prestigious National Tax Practice Institute (NTPI) between 2002 and 2017, and still speaks at various NAEA state affiliates and for other organizations. In addition to radio and TV appearances and interviews, Sherrill has written articles about the Tax Court exam process for CCH’s Journal of Tax Practice and Procedure (June/July 2003) and NAEA’s EAJournal (May/June 2007). Articles on other topics have been published in the EAJournal, including “Introduction to Tax Court” that appears in the July/August 2013 issue, “Overview of Practice before the U.S. Tax Court” that is on this website and was published in the September/October 2018 issue, and other articles appearing on a more regular basis in 2019.  

Sherrill served on the NAEA Board of Directors from 2005-2013, and was NAEA’s president in 2011-2012. In 2004, she received the prestigious NAEA-EF Excellence in Education award and the NAEA’s Mentor of the Year award in 2011. In 2013, she was honored to receive the Founders Award, NAEA’s highest award bestowed upon a member, to recognize her significant achievement and contributions on behalf of enrolled agents and NAEA.

Her firm, located in Southern California, specializes in tax consulting, preparation, and representation for individuals and businesses, and provides complete business services, including write-up, financial projections, consulting and planning. 

INSTRUCTOR FRANK ACUÑA, ESQ. teaches Evidence during the May program. His engaging speaking style will help students stay methodical and focused during this portion of the exam. The senior partner of Acuña & Regli, LLP, Frank represents individuals and businesses throughout California. He also served as Adjunct Faculty at St. Mary’s college of California, was a Teaching Assistant in the Legal Research & Writing Program at the UCLA School of Law and is a lecturer at UC Berkeley. As a professional advisor, Frank has taught tax seminars for the National Tax Practice Institute, the California Society of Enrolled Agents, the California Society of Tax Professionals, and a number of state and local chapters of the National Association of Enrolled Agents and the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. He is a featured speaker for the Professional Fiduciary Association of California and the California Association of Public Administrators, Public Conservators, and Public Guardians. He advises tax, fiduciary, and real estate professionals throughout California and was honored by the California Society of Enrolled Agents as its 2010 Booster of the Year. Frank is a California State Bar certified specialist in Estate Planning, Trust, and Probate Law.

Mary Beth Lougen, EA, USTCP, MLSTINSTRUCTOR MARY BETH LOUGEN, EA, USTCP, MLST prepared her first tax return in 1978, which launched a passion for tax and a career.  She is the founder of American Expat Tax Services, a niche firm specializing in international taxpayers, and COO of Expat Tax Tools, an international tax software company offering the Form 8621 Calculator.  Beth has worked in the U.S. and in Canada; she is a regular presenter and panelist on international tax topics for various organizations, and has written for many tax publications and services.  She passed the Tax Court exam in 2014 and received her Masters of Legal Studies in Taxation from the University of San Francisco School of Law.  She is part of the USTCP team as a mentor and an instructor for the May and July class sessions. 



Instructor Thomas A Gorczynski, EA, USTCP, is the Senior Tax Consultant at Gorczynski & Associates, LLC, a full-service tax firm in Phoenix, AZ.  Tom was a student in Sherrill’s 2014 exam cycle class, and passed the Tax Court exam on his first attempt.  Tom has been an Enrolled Agent since 2009 and is a Fellow of the National Tax Practice Institute and a Certified Tax Coach.  He earned his Bachelor of Arts from the University of Delaware, a post-baccalaureate certificate in finance and accounting from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and a Master of Science in Taxation from Golden Gate University.  He has been a member of the USTCP instructional staff since 2016.  Recipient of the 2018 Certified Tax Coach of the year, Tom is a nationally-known speaker on tax law and procedure, and has spoken for NAEA, the California Society of Enrolled Agents Super Seminars, and other national, state and local organizations.  Tom is a skilled technical writer on tax law and strategy and is published in EAJournal. Tom is part of the team at Compass Tax Educators, and instructs throughout the full USTCP program.


During the classroom sessions you’ll also have the opportunity to speak with several successful students from Sherrill’s prior exam cycles. These USTCP mentors can share their experiences and guidance on taking and passing this challenging exam.

LEAD MENTOR, LINDA BOSSARD, EA USTCP started her career in public accounting in 1980 first working for an enrolled agent, then moving to Grimbleby Coleman CPAs, Inc., in 1994. A student of Sherrill’s in 2010, she passed the Tax Court exam on her first attempt and was admitted as a nonattorney to practice in the US Tax Court in 2011. Her expertise is in income tax preparation, with experience in individual, corporate, partnership, estate and trust taxes, as well as IRS appeals and audit representation. A member of the mentor team since 2012, Linda became the Lead Mentor in 2016 and is an integral part of the USTCP team.


During the May session students are greeted by Cathy Clow, EA who has been handling registration administration since 2012.


Cathy joined CAC Professional Services in Auburn, CA in 1988.  The firm specializes in preparing individual tax returns, small business bookkeeping and payroll and tax controversy representation.  She passed the SEE in 1998 and became a Fellow of NTPI in 2000.  She teaches on the national level and in 2012 received the “Excellence in Education” award from NAEA.