Karla J. Brannen

Karla J. Brannen CPA

Senior Tax Manager

Karla Brannen joined ARB in 2013. As a Senior Tax Manager, she focuses primarily on tax compliance and planning for a wide range of clients, including cannabis services, employee benefit plans, closely held businesses, and individuals, including those with high net-worth and multi-state tax compliance needs. In addition, Karla is the leader of ARB’s Onboarding & Training Program for new hires.

Education and Designations

  • Bachelor of Science in Accounting, Thomas College
  • Master of Business Administration, Thomas College 
  • 2018 MECPA Women to Watch Award Winner
  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)


Karla enjoys spending time with family and friends in the beautiful Maine outdoors. From skiing in the winter, to hiking in the summer and fall, you can always find her outdoors. Once a year, she finds a remote area of Maine, usually in Aroostook County, to explore.

Community Involvement



As the Cannabis Practice Leader, Karla works with cannabis companies of all kinds, from hemp to CBD to marijuana, helping with a range of services from entity selection and tax compliance to consulting for cost accounting, banking methods, and operating procedures.

Employee Benefit Plans

Karla specializes in ERISA compliance and directs the overall planning and procedures involved in the firm’s tax preparation services for employee benefit plans. She provides filing services to satisfy the U.S. Department of Labor and Internal Revenue Service’s annual reporting requirements for employee benefit plans.


In working with closely held businesses, Karla’s expertise allows her to provide services that are beneficial to the day-to-day operations of your business, without losing sight of potential tax savings or the financial burden of the shareholders, partners, members, and other related ventures, trusts, estates, and private foundations.


Whether the tax at hand is federal, state, or local, Karla ensures timely and insightful advice with respect to minimizing tax exposure, while remaining in compliance with tax laws and regulations. Experience and skill in navigating multi-state taxation matters, such as residency considerations and income-sourcing, allow her to identify new opportunities, assist in planning, and to provide services to help you achieve tax minimization across the board.

ARB Onboarding & Training Program

Karla champions the ARB Onboarding and Training Program for new hires. Under her leadership, this program has grown exponentially. Training and onboarding processes have been integrated with the firm’s virtual workflow software, supporting improved participation and accountability, streamlining documentation of training procedures, and providing consistency in cross-training.

Professional Affiliations