Our first MOTM in 2024 enjoys a smooth cortado (from Notion, of course), spending quality time with his wife and three kiddos, a beautiful day on the golf course, and helping his clients manage their accounting practice. That’s Chad Van Norman, and it’s his month to shine.
After graduating from ORU, Chad fled west to California, where he received his MBA from UCLA. After spending a decade working in investments and portfolio management, he and his wife Paige made the trek back to Oklahoma to pursue their entrepreneurial dreams. Paige is the owner of Williamina, a very popular women’s boutique clothing store in Tulsa, and our nextdoor neighbor at The Root – Market Station!
Chad is a partner at Leanor Financial, providing holistic accounting services for medium-sized businesses. Leanor offers full-service, end-to-end, integrated accounting and tax partnership that helps leadership manage their accounting, tax, and finance processes and strategies with a strong focus on relationships.
What do you do? Tell us a little bit about your work.
I provide CFO services to small to mid-sized businesses (10-100 employees), including bookkeeping, financial statement preparation, fundraising support and tax services for businesses and their owners. What makes us unique is how relational we are as a firm. That starts with the awesome team we have as well as the great group of clients we work with. Our goal is to provide a high-quality experience for a small group of clients as opposed to being a high-volume shop.
What’s your go-to drink order at Notion?
Cortado – very delicious and efficient coffee experience.
What’s your favorite quote?
My favorite quote ties into career advice as well. “20s are for learning and 30s are for earning” – one of my ORU professors (Steve Green). I loved the reminder of what skillset I was building for future earnings and not being so focused on what I earned in that moment.
What are your two favorite spots in Tulsa?
East Bohemian Pizzeria (great vibes and food) and Gadget Company (great for gifts and makes up 90% of my wardrobe).
What is the most valuable career advice you’ve been given?
Two good ones are 1) A mentor of mine would always remind us before making an investment that “it’s not about what price you sell at, it’s all about the price that you buy at,” which has made me a much better investor and 2) a grad professor of mine at UCLA (Peter Guber) would tell us that we will never get everything done, but always remember to get the things done that would take you out of the deal, business, or venture you’re pursuing. I always reflect on it when trying to prioritize all the moving parts in work and life.
There are now 25 hours in a day—how do you spend your extra hour?
An hour at the golf course with my kids and wife. I Love spending time with my family, being outside, and my golf game could also use the help.
What made you decide to cowork instead of work from home?
Creating separation from work and home. Before I was always in work-mode and dad/husband-mode at the same time. Now it’s much easier for me to be more present in each environment, which ultimately helps me be a better husband and father.
What do you think is the best part about being a member of The Root Coworking?
The Root team and how well they care for their members. They’ve created a great community with people from different companies and backgrounds as well as think of ideas like gift wrapping stations during the holidays to take such good care of us.