It’s fair to say that veteran tax strategist, Juris Doctor and Master of Laws in Taxation, Mark Rehn, was a planner from the beginning. Raised in the blue-collar Michigan neighborhoods of Madison Heights and Shelby Township, young Mark saw firsthand that success would not come easy.
A hockey and football player throughout his childhood, he attempted to secure a spot as a walk-on for the University of Michigan’s football team during his freshman year, but he quickly realized that splitting his focus wasn’t going to help him achieve his long-term goals. “I would have been cannon fodder,” explains Mark, “and I was in college to get a degree.”
This wasn’t the first time his capability to get to the root of an issue and follow-through served Mark Rehn.
As he focused on his studies and future, he was invited and joined Beta Alpha Psi, the Accounting Honors Fraternity. Partners from the large consulting firms would visit to give presentations and hold receptions for networking purposes and during these Mark discovered that the ones who were doing the best had CPAs and law degrees, which set the course of his career.
“I went to law school, working and going to school full-time,” he says matter-of-factly. “I was also able to persuade my employers to pay for a large portion of my law school.” One of the many benefits of getting a Juris Doctorate, (J.D.), is the ability to stay calm under pressure, organize thoughts, and present them well in every circumstance.
After earning his J.D. from DePaul University Law School, Mark returned to DePaul to gain more knowledge about taxation and earned a Master of Laws degree in Taxation, (LL.M.).
Corporate Tax Mastery
After earning his law degree, Mark found opportunities at a large, global telecommunications and information technology firm and the world’s largest styrene manufacturer as a Tax Director for the Americas. He oversaw large, diverse teams to ensure the organizations were compliant with various tax regulations and successfully handled IRS audits.
As the Tax Director of the Americas for an entity of the largest privately held chemical company, Mark implemented several tax strategies to lower the effective tax rate paid by the company. One of these strategies was to monetize large tax losses carryforwards in the firm’s Canadian subsidiary. Over seven and half years, he was able to find a way to utilize the entire loss carryforward saving the company over $80 million in net taxes paid.
“I managed teams for most of my career,” Mark said. “I’m able to reach people and get them up to speed, so they could quickly become a real asset to an organization.”
Private Tax Guidance and Practice
Despite spending much of his career in corporations, Mark has earned a reputation as a go-to tax strategist and estate planner for small business owners in the 1990’s. He points out that while his law degree aligned his skills to corporations, his Master of Laws in Taxation benefited personal clients.
“I spent a lot of time in the estate planning world,” explained Mark. “I went back to school to get a master of laws to concentrate on taxation. I thought about working with a Law firm but decided to go out on my own and I started working with small businesses to help them with tax and strategies.”
His article, Making Gifts of Appreciated Stock – Time to Switch to Private Operating Foundations was published in The Journal of Taxation.
Since semi-retiring in October 2020, Mark found that he wanted to keep his blades sharp and went back to preparing tax returns with the global firm, Intuit. This led to the realization that he wasn’t ready to retire if the right opportunity came along.
A New Beginning for Mark Rehn
While discussing his need to stay connected to the tax world with his long-time friend, Andy Brinkman, CEO of Stableford Capital, Andy had a revelation and invited Mark to offer his considerable tax knowledge to Stableford’s clients.
The two had spent decades talking philosophy, world events, and life observations. There aren’t many who knew Mark as well as the CEO, who knew about his 35-year marriage, two daughters, love of soccer coaching and commentary, and his unmatched tax career trajectory.
“I didn’t get on the phone with Mark intending to hire him,” explains Andy. “It just happened organically when Mark revealed he wasn’t ready to retire. I knew his values, attention to detail, insatiable interest in tax, tax structure, and professionalism would serve both the investment team and Stableford’s clients well.”
Expanding Tax Expertise and Client Services at Stableford Capital
Mark knew it would be a perfect match, “Knowing that Andy prefers working closely with his clients, keeping their interests at the forefront of every decision. and providing information to help them make the right decisions is important to me.”
When you reach Mark Rehn on the phone, you can count on the highest level of tax mastery, a singular focus on your goals, and the commitment to promoting strategies that match your unique needs. If you’d like to know more about this tax expert and family man, ask him about his five-year tenure as a member of the board of directors’ and tax expert for Grace Christian Academy, located in the Little Village area of Chicago.
If you’d like to discuss the type of representation you’ll receive from Mark Rehn, Andy Brinkman, and other professionals at Stableford Capital, sign up for a complimentary 15-minute consultation or call 480.493.2300.