Firm History

Celebrating 80 Years of History

On September 18, 1939, Floyd L. Sanford, George W. Myers, and James A. DeWald opened an office in the Lincoln Tower that began the firm that is now Dulin, Ward & DeWald, Inc.  The firm was known as Sanford, Myers and DeWald until 1972.  Floyd Sanford began his public accounting career with Ernst and Ernst in Indianapolis and moved to Fort Wayne in 1927.  In 1931 he formed the company Pease, Sanford and Reinking.  George Myers was also with Ernst and Ernst and then Pease, Sanford and Reinking.  James DeWald had previously worked at Fort Wayne National Bank.

DWD moved to 1610 Spy Run Avenue in October 1957.  The offices were significantly expanded in April 1973.

DWD opened an office in Marion, Indiana in 1981.  On May 1, 1985 DWD acquired the office of Wayne Hall in Marion.  This was a major acquisition that gave us a strong presence in community.  The Marion office is now managed by Mike Ernst.

Computer operations for the firm began in the late 1950’s.  In these early years DWD outsourced computer processing to companies in Peoria, Illinois and Lansing, Michigan.  Later on, the processing was performed in Fort Wayne, but still outsourced.  Finally, in 1970 the firm acquired their first IBM System/3 computer.  The firm continued to process information using an IBM mini mainframe until PC’s became prevalent in the late 1980’s and early 1990’s.

The computer consulting side has changed dramatically over the years as well.  DWD did a considerable amount of programming up until the late 1980’s.  Now the technology consultants assist clients with hardware, software and network installation, along with training and support.  Our computer division now operates as DWD Technology Group.

In June of 2007, DWD moved its Fort Wayne office to its current location, 9921 Dupont Circle Drive West, Suite 300.  On October 1, 2013, DWD acquired The Bair CPA Group which included 12 additional employees. 

In our eighty years of existence there have been eight managing directors.  George Myers and then later James DeWald succeeded Floyd Sanford as leaders of our firm.  Frank Dulin, Allen Ward, Michael DeWald, Jim Doty and now Jeff Taner have also headed the firm.

One final thought - In 1939 the highest income tax rate was 79% for individuals and 38% for corporations.  In 1944 the highest income tax rate for individuals was at an all-time high of 94%. Currently the highest income tax rate is 37% for individuals and 21% for corporations.  So for those of you who think income taxes are high today, think again.  Our predecessors have experienced much higher rates.


Chronology of Partners

1939 – Floyd Sanford

1939 – George Myers

1939 – James DeWald

1953 – Frank Dulin, Jr.

1953 – Paul Shirmeyer

1958 – Allen Ward

1966 – Howard Westerhausen

1968 – Michael DeWald

1973 – James Wine

1978 – Robert Meyer

1980 – James Doty

1980 – James Hindle

1986 – J. Nelson Coats

1993 – Michael O’Brien

1996 – Jeff Taner and Mark Westerhausen

2001 – Mike Ernst, Bob Kohlmeyer and Byron Price

2010 – Casey Scheurich

2014 – Burt Brunner and Chris Ashby

2016 – Valerie McHarry and Jessica Ogle

2017 – Carrie Minnich


Managing Partners:

Floyd Sanford

George Myers

James DeWald

Frank Dulin

Allen Ward 1/1/79

Michael DeWald 1/1/93

Jim Doty 7/1/02

Jeff Taner 7/1/09

"Bruner Dental has been with DWD for well over 15 years. The entire team at DWD has been helpful in many ways. From simple questions day to day, to audits, payroll needs, and much more; they…"

Rondell Nelson

Bruner Dental