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About Us

Downs Tax Preparation is family owned and operated and founded by me, Jessie Downs, EA. I mainly serve the Sierra foothills and Sacramento Valley, but can also serve you in many State matters.

My professional story:

I have been enrolled to practice before the IRS since 2011 and have over 25 years of accounting experience in a variety of industries.

I had a passion for accounting since an early age, often scrounging for loose change around the house and counting it for fun in my spare time. I was so impressed with how much I had saved each time I counted the money, I would brag about it to my parents. My family was in construction and, when I was about 9 years old, my family experienced an economic downturn whereby I had the opportunity to make my first mortgage payment to save the family home. It proved to be a worthwhile investment.

To be honest, I never planned to go into Taxes or Accounting. I consulted my Dad on what I should be when I grow up (some of you from Nevada County may remember Zane Baker, the backhoe guy who specialized in septic system installation) and he recommended I pick something almost recession-proof, "There's a saying that nothing is certain but death and taxes, but keep in mind people also need to eat and poop, or need medical attention, or need their cars fixed. I started out fixing cars then decided I hated it and moved on to septic systems. I hate that too but it pays a lot more than fixing cars."  He looked at me and suggested I would be a good tax person. I thought he was silly.

Turns out my dad was right, though it took me awhile to catch on. As a teen, I was itching to get out into the working world and attended a high-school work-study program. I liked cars and was good with numbers, so they placed me in the accounting department of a local car dealership. Less than a year after I graduated, I was managing the leasing department of the nation's 3rd largest free-standing ATM deployer. About 5 years later they sold and it turned out to be a good time to start a family.

Though I spent 7 years at home raising children, I always kept my skills current and offered temporary accounting support through a staffing firm. One of my placements was at a CPA firm during tax season. I LOVED IT. That was when I decided to get my tax license, though life still had some detours to offer.

The Great Recession came and my husband lost his job as a Graphic Designer, while I was still at home raising kids and studying for my tax license. We decided it was best for us both to put our resumés out there and, within a week, I was hired at the first job I interviewed for, as a Full-Charge Bookkeeper for a well-known engineering firm in Sacramento. Though I was broken-hearted to trade places being the breadwinner, and that the position wasn't at a CPA tax firm, it really was a wonderful blessing. I met and worked with some wonderful engineering professionals, ran in-house payroll, participated in Work Comp audits, IRS audits, 401k compliance, and Human Resources benefit administration. During this time I obtained my license as an IRS Enrolled Agent.

After almost 7 years in the former position, I felt it was time to return to my original goal and take the leap into Tax Accounting. I had my reservations about making this change because I had grown comfortable in the accounting position I had at the engineering firm, which could have continued to be a great career. But, as you can see, much of my life has been shaped by significant economic changes and though "bookkeeping" is a useful skill, the pay range (as well as the quality of service) can vary greatly depending on economic conditions. In other words, I had a growing family to feed, and felt I should pursue a career which was a little more recession-proof while the timing seemed right. I don't regret it.

Over the last few years, I have had the privilege of working with some of the most talented and respected tax professionals and tax attorneys in the greater Sacramento area. They have tutored me on tax strategies for Individuals, Corporations, Trusts, and other entities. 

Fortunately for me (and you), they all had one thing in common: None of them liked working on tax problems and they handed them all to me. Over the years I have developed a particular set of skills which has enabled me to be quite successful resolving tax problems between a taxpayer and a taxing agency. While most tax professionals dabble in solving tax problems, resolving tax issues is my specialty, and I am one of the few tax professionals in the local area who specializes in solving tax problems.

My personal story:

I am a Northern California native, born and raised in Nevada and Yuba Counties and their rural communities. I have been married over 25 years to another California native, Michael Downs, who is also a licensed tax professional. I grew up on the Camptonville side of Bullards Bar Reservoir and Michael grew up on the Challenge side. Together we have four children, who are fourth-generation natives.

Our family resides off rural highway 49 on acreage with a menagerie of birds, dogs, and cats. We're bleeding hearts who love nature and animals. 

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