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November 18, 2009

Grant Thornton US appoints new chief operating officer

Lou Grabowsky will become the new chief operating officer of
Grant Thornton US from January 2010.

The 58-year-old will be responsible for all
day-to-day operations of the sixth largest US accounting firm,
which employs 6,000 people and generates $1.2 billion in annual
revenue.

Grabowsky will act as a point of collaboration
among the firm’s geographies and other operating units, such as
service lines and industry sectors. The role has ultimate
responsibility for human resources and mobility at the firm.

Grabowsky, an audit partner, has more than 30
years of experience.Lou Grabowsky

“Hopefully there will be a strong alignment of
background and capabilities with [Grant Thornton’s] expectations,”
he said.

Grabowsky said Grant Thornton US will continue
a strategy to focus on niche market areas it is strong in.

“We want to back away from certain areas that
we’ve tried and tested and don’t see as being areas that we would
be leaders in… I think this is an evolution of playing on a global
landscape,” he said.

Grabowsky most recently served as managing
partner of Grant Thornton’s central region, comprising offices in
Denver, Dallas, Houston, San Antonio, Kansas City, Oklahoma City,
Tulsa and Wichita. He led all operations within the region,
including client service and professional matters, and also served
on the firm’s senior leadership team.

Prior to joining Grant Thornton in 2002,
Grabowsky had a lengthy career with Arthur Andersen, where he held
positions including partner-in-charge of the assurance practice for
the firm’s Dallas office between 1991 and 1997.

He was also the consumer products industry
leader for the South West region, a head of the business process
outsourcing practice for North America, and was a managing partner
of the firm’s Great Lakes region.

Grabowksy has served as a chief financial
officer for a Fortune 1000 public company, where he was responsible
for finance, treasury, credit, distribution, management information
systems and internal audit.

A graduate with a Bachelor of Science in
accounting at the Pennsylvania State University, he now serves on
the board of visitors to the Smeal Business School.

Grabowsky is a certified public accountant in
Texas and Ohio, and is active in various civic and charitable
organisations, including the Dallas Regional Chamber of Commerce,
Salesmanship Club of Dallas, Ursuline Academy and the Retina
Foundation of the South West.

With the new appointment of Stephen Chipman as
chief executive from January, the change in key leadership
positions is the beginning of a new era for Grant Thornton US.

“Lou’s credentials are impeccable, and he will
serve the firm with his characteristic commitment to excellence as
chief operating officer for Grant Thornton,” Chipman said.

“His personal and professional strengths
complement my own, and we have already been working on transition
issues and other matters of high priority for the US firm.”

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