Peter Waterstreet.

PositionVMware Inc. international tax senior director

When Peter Waterstreet opted for an accelerated master of accountancy program, he made a critical decision: he chose the tax stem over the professional accounting and information systems stems. In making that choice, he was influenced by business law and introductory tax classes that were part of the undergraduate accounting curriculum, he notes.

Prior to his current job as senior director, international tax, at VMware Inc., Waterstreet worked at Deloitte, Xilinx, and Synopsys, where he learned some valuable lessons. "I look back on my experience at Deloitte and realize it taught me just about everything about being a tax professional, not just putting book-learned technical tax knowledge to practical application but also how to prepare and reference a file, research, write, improve processes, and relate to and manage other highly motivated professionals," he says. After Deloitte, he adds, it was exciting to transition to industry with a much different approach to work. "Xilinx," he explains, "was my first international tax-focused role. The company became widely recognized in tax circles from the dispute with the IRS over the inclusion of stock option costs in cost-sharing arrangements. The twists and turns we faced in that case, all the way through its appeal to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, were lessons in preparation and perseverance."

VMware-Socially Conscious Company

Waterstreet moved on to VMware because "the company's value proposition is very attractive, and the tax team is full of really talented colleagues.... It was a chance for me to grow with a thriving organization and help to drive new initiatives forward. It's also a progressive, socially conscious company and great place to work. We operate consistently with our EPIC (2) values of execution, passion, integrity, customers, and community."

What's the most interesting tax issue he's worked on at VMware? "Certainly, the announced intention by Dell Technologies to spin off VMware. A Section 355 spin-off transaction is not something an in-house professional sees all that often," Waterstreet says.

The TEI Experience

TEI has been extremely important to Waterstreet. "TEI has meant so much over various phases of my career," he says. "When I first went to work in industry, it was about continuing education. Networking with other local in-house professionals was a natural by-product of attending TEI programs. After moving to an international tax role, TEI...

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