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Published: Sunday, 6/3/2007

Accountant mentored other professionals

Wayne C. Landes, 68, an accountant and retired audit partner in the Toledo office of Ernst & Young who was a board member of charitable, civic, and church groups, died Tuesday in Hospice of Northwest Ohio, South Detroit Avenue, from complications of abdominal cancer.

From 1996 to 2006, he was an officer and director of First Toledo Corp. and advised boards of directors of privately owned companies around northwest Ohio.

Much of his professional career was with Arthur Young & Co., later known as Ernst & Young, from which he retired in 1995 as an audit partner.

"He just always understood what it meant to be a professional and always lived what he understood," said Larry Davenport, an audit partner at Ernst & Young who became a colleague in 1970.

"When it came to professionalism, our staff learned from him and wanted to be like him," Mr. Davenport said.

In the firm, Mr. Landes was a mentor to young people, who sought his counsel. "He made each one of us think we were the one he was taking care of," Mr. Davenport recalled. "He was a mentor to many of us because he was forthright and constructively critical, and at the same time very caring in his guidance to us."

Mr. Landes was a former president of the Ohio Society of Certified Public Accountants and its Toledo chapter. He was on the governing council and joint trial board of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.

He served on the boards of the United Way of Greater Toledo, Bethany House, and the Kiwanis Club of Toledo.

Mr. Landes of Springfield Township was a former member of Zion United Methodist Church, where he was a leader. He was a pension trustee of the West Ohio Conference of the United Methodist Church.

His daughters went to the YMCA's Camp Storer when they were young and, the camp's motto could have been his own, daughter Patty O'Toole said: "God first; others second; I'm third."

"He acted that way," she said. "I think that's why he was so successful being a mentor because he really cared about other people. He was very into service, and you needed to pay attention to your community - not just what you do for yourself, but what are you going to do for the common good."

Mr. Landes grew up in Napoleon and was a 1957 graduate of Napoleon High School and a 1960 graduate of Bowling Green State University.

Surviving are his wife, Karen Landes, whom he married June 20, 1958; daughters, Julie Landes, Laura Pounds, and Patty O'Toole; brother, Norman Landes, and six grandchildren.

The family will receive visitors at the Coyle Funeral Home from 3 to 8 p.m. today. A celebration of life service will begin at 2 p.m. tomorrow in Epworth United Methodist Church, of which he was a member.

The family suggests tributes to Hospice of Northwest Ohio; the Epworth United Methodist Church Foundation Scholarship Fund; the Landes Family Scholarship Fund at BGSU, or a charity of the donor's choice.



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