Until Feb. 1, 2023, we were Group Health Foundation. This post was written under our former identity. To learn more about our new name, read our announcement here.
There was a point in DeAna Crosson’s youth when she did not take school as seriously as her dad would have liked. One day, he allowed her to use his car for exactly two hours for the sole purpose of driving to the local college and selecting a major. Up until then, her driving privileges had been revoked, so she was motivated by having access to a car again to go anywhere she wanted.
“I took the car to the school, and I went to the wall of pamphlets. Accounting was the first one. And, I was like: ‘I’m good with numbers. This is the one I’m going to take.’ Then I had the car for two hours,” she shares, laughing. “So, that’s how I decided to be an accountant. Thankfully, it worked out.”
More than 17 years later, DeAna has joined Group Health Foundation as staff accountant. In this role, she is supporting day-to-day accounting functions and monitoring compliance with the Foundation’s policies, protocols, and workflows.
DeAna enjoys accounting because she sees the financials as more than just numbers. She has a front row seat to how an organization moves and grows. And, at the Foundation, the numbers represent how we hold ourselves accountable to the organizations and communities we serve.
As someone who started her career in profit-driven work environments, DeAna says she is excited to continue her professional life somewhere that is more explicitly aligned with her values. She decided to change sectors after a health scare.
“I was in the ICU at one point in my pregnancy,” DeAna recalls. “I emailed my boss to let her know I was worried. And, her response was, ‘I hope you feel better, will you be at work on Monday?’ And, I felt like if I had died, I had done nothing to benefit my community. I wanted that to change.”
In addition to “accountant,” DeAna also describes herself as an actor and singer. She shares a love for musical theater with her family, specifically her daughter and younger sister. Before the pandemic, she was cast in her dream role as Sarah in “Ragtime.” The production was put on hold, but DeAna hopes to return as one of the show’s leads 2022.
When thinking about her interests, DeAna says musical theater and accounting are not as different as they seem. “When an accountant finds a discrepancy in the numbers, when something is off and not coming together, it’s like when a singer doesn’t sound right. But, then when everything comes together—and you finally figure out what’s incorrect—you fix it and everything just works. And it’s a symphony.”
DeAna comes to Group Health Foundation from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, where she was an accounts payable specialist. She is pursuing her bachelor’s degree in applied management at Tacoma Community College and holds an associate degree in accounting from Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.
As a child growing up in a military family, DeAna has moved a lot. However, she has always considered Steilacoom in Pierce County home. That’s where she currently lives with her children—along with both sets of grandparents who are just a few blocks away from each other. She describes Steilacoom as “a small, quaint, little picturesque town that sits on the Puget Sound with mountains in the background.”