Life at Deloitte

Career Journey: Rebecca Lady

Feed and grow those around you

“Serving and collaborating with federal agencies and programs that are mission-focused and socially impactful for our communities is very important to me. This is what I love about my career.” — Rebecca Lady, Risk & Financial Advisory, Rosslyn

Building relationships

I build strong financial processes and strategies to help clients mitigate mission, financial, and operational risks they invariably face. To optimize outcomes, you must build relationships that allow for innovation and tailoring of the support we can provide. Sometimes we need to be creative and think outside of the box–adding value is not just a check-the-box exercise.

Creating a decent mirepoix

Rebecca knows that you must be able to chop an onion before you can hope to create a decent mirepoix. You see, as a high schooler in San Francisco, she interned with Bradley Ogden, a star farm-to-table chef on the West Coast. “I wanted to be a chef at the time,” she says. Obviously, her career veered from that path, but she still values the fundamentals that career would have entailed including passion, attention to detail, and teamwork.

Rebecca started at Deloitte in Enterprise Risk Services (now known as Deloitte Risk & Financial Advisory). Early on, much of that work was information technology audits and the evaluation of HIPAA compliance—protecting people’s health information. In 2005, after returning from maternity leave, Rebecca moved to quality risk management. “I learned how we manage our risk at Deloitte in order to meet our quality and compliance standards.” Shortly thereafter, she was asked to help build Deloitte’s Federal Practice, pretty much from the ground up. “There were only 20 or 30 of us at the time,” she notes. With each new experience in audit & assurance, risk management, compliance, strategic planning, and team building, Rebecca added to a knowledge base that routinely informs her ongoing work. She calls on those fundamental lessons repeatedly.

Ensuring student opportunities

Today, Rebecca is a managing director in the Risk & Financial Advisory practice. Her primary client is the US Department of Education, an agency with which she now has a decade of experience. Her focus is on processes, protocol and auditability to support grant making agencies. “We're really helping them understand fraud, waste and abuse.” Rebecca sees it as an important mission designed to make sure deserving students have opportunity. “We send students to college, and we help with our Nation’s educational infrastructure,” she says. “Who wouldn’t love the impact of that?”

As a managing director, Rebecca’s current responsibilities derive from two synergistic keystones: building knowledge and experience at Deloitte and bringing responsive, high-value support to clients. Exemplary of the efforts that have brought Rebecca recognition for innovative changes has been a recent strategy she developed to leverage Deloitte Luminaries. Luminaries are specialists on a range of subjects who’ve had significant careers elsewhere, then joined Deloitte to add perspective and value on client engagements. Rebecca proposed and developed tools to encourage a much broader connection for these leaders throughout Deloitte. This program was one of just three chosen by Deloitte to be pursued nationally in 2016. In addition to engaging Luminaries, Rebecca works to bring the experienced leadership endemic at Deloitte to frame the highest quality support for her clients. What better way to deliver on the Deloitte promise of excellence in all services.

Another way Rebecca seeks to contribute is through community work. Last year, she leveraged her experience to help FAIR Girls, a nonprofit organization that seeks to help victims of prostitution, human trafficking, and abuse. “We helped them build out their financial and grants management process,” Rebecca says.

It's a constant juggle

As most any mother with a demanding career will tell you, “life’s a constant juggle.” Rebecca’s eldest daughter is a competitive figure skater. Her younger daughter is an up-and-coming hockey player. Add their schedules to work, and it keeps Rebecca (her husband and her nanny!) jumping, too. She’s good with that. “I love this career,” she says, “and I love being a role model for my two daughters.” And, in case you’re wondering, she and her daughters do cook together. “The other day, my daughter went on my tablet, picked out a menu, made me take her shopping, and then did the cooking with me just being her sous chef.” Like mother, like daughter.

Rebecca's advice

I would tell you that having strong personal and professional relationships is critical, as well as taking care of yourself. Spend time to feed and grow both yourself and those around you. You can’t do a good job, if your job is all you do.

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