Thursday, September 22, 2011

In the Public Eye: Justin DuBrueler, CPA

It’s right there in the job description — Certified Public Accountant (CPA). The second word in the title is “Public,” and few Virginia accountants embody that as literally as Justin DuBrueler, CPA.
DuBrueler (right), the senior director of accounting at Richmond International Raceway (RIR), helps plan for some of the Richmond area’s biggest events of the year — the track’s two NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races that put Virginia in the national spotlight.

DuBrueler, a Winchester native, isn’t a gearhead. He had never attended a NASCAR race before taking the job at RIR. But ever since his first experience, he’s been hooked on motor sports and welcomes the hoopla surrounding the two biggest spectator sporting events in the Commonwealth.

“We’re constantly in the news on the front page of the paper, on TV, on ‘SportsCenter’ and things like that,” DuBrueler said. “I grew up a sports fan in general, even though I wasn’t necessarily a NASCAR fan, so it’s neat for me to see how the PR engine runs with NASCAR and the publicity that it receives. ... It’s fun being part of that. It’s fun to make the decisions that get us on a national stage.”

DuBrueler started the path to his accounting career in high school, taking classes his junior and senior years and excelling. He says it was a natural choice to continue that career path at West Virginia University, and he hasn’t regretted it for a second after joining his high-profile employer.

He’s embraced the speed, the spotlight and the excitement of NASCAR, finding time to enjoy the perks of his job and sneak down to Victory Lane on occasion.

“I think some of the coolest memories I have are at Victory Lane after a NASCAR Sprint Cup Series event,” he said. “I don’t always do it, but if I have time, I go down there and see the drivers jump out of the car. Confetti’s flying, their significant other gives them a kiss, the owner’s there, the crew’s there. It’s a special moment.”

While DuBrueler helps ensure that RIR remains financially sound, he’s also turned into a sounding board for his colleagues’ financial questions.

“I think I provide an objective voice of responsibility here,” he said. “I’m also a financial mentor to many of my colleagues at the track. They know when they come to me, they’re going to get an unbiased view.”

And he’s using those lessons in his own life as well. He and his wife, Debbie, have 6-year-old twin sons, Ryan and Colby. DuBrueler hopes to ensure they have a strong foundation for their own future. And he likes to finance his beloved family vacations and the occasional round of golf as well.

Justin DuBrueler doesn’t just preach financial fitness for his coworkers at RIR. He lives it in his own life. That’s the life of a CPA — private and public.

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