Marty Einhorn never got to fulfill one of his lifelong dreams — opening a jazz supper club in downtown Norfolk — but he accomplished more than enough to be long remembered.
Einhorn, a founding shareholder of the Norfolk CPA firm Wall, Einhorn & Chernitzer, died Friday after a battle with cancer compounded by COVID-19. He was 63.
Einhorn leaves behind his wife, Susan, also a retired CPA from the firm; sons Will and Jay; a daughter-in-law, April; a granddaughter, Charlotte; and his parents, Barry and Lois Einhorn.
A Norfolk native, Einhorn graduated from Granby High School in 1975 and earned his bachelor’s degree in accounting with a concentration in commerce in 1980 from the University of Virginia. The diehard U.Va. basketball fan was known for driving to Charlottesville to cheer his beloved Cavaliers and return home the same day.
Einhorn, Alvin Wall and Jeffrey Chernitzer started the firm in Norfolk in 1989. They had been working for the Norfolk firm of Goodman and Company (now Dixon Hughes Goodman) when they decided to diversify. Over 32 years, the regional firm grew to 75 employees, including CPAs, support staff and seven shareholders.
Throughout his nearly 40-year career, Einhorn worked with clients in professional services, real estate, construction, manufacturing, retail and wholesale distribution. The founders likened their business to an extended family. Einhorn had said it was established based on personal touch with long-term and deep relationships for clients, staff and the community.
Friends and family members said one of his greatest strengths in business and in life was his caring for people, even moreso than his expertise with numbers. After fighting a yearlong battle with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, for which he underwent an experimental treatment called CAR T-cell therapy, Einhorn chose to take an early retirement on Dec. 31, 2019.
He handed the reins to Angela Kerns, who knew she had big shoes to fill.
“He cared a lot for everyone that he ever met,” Kerns said.
She said that became even more apparent as the firm received, after the news of Einhorn’s death, an outpouring of love that spoke to the countless lives he touched.
“I don’t know that a lot of people have that kind of impact that he had,” she said.
Caitlyn A. Gurnee, Wall, Einhorn & Chernitzer’s talent development and branding coordinator, said he was the person to emulate your life after. Longtime friends Dr. Michael and Leslie Shroyer echoed that sentiment.
“Marty was one of those people who you would want to live your life like, because he was really truly that thoughtful and that exemplary as a community- and civic-minded person,” she said. “He absolutely loved Norfolk … anything to make the city prosper — and he didn’t just talk the talk.”
Einhorn was involved in many organizations, including the Rotary Club of Norfolk, the Planning Council, ForKids, the Simon Family Jewish Community Center, the United Jewish Federation, and the Virginia and Tidewater chapters of Certified Public Accountants.
An ardent musician who played the trumpet and flugelhorn, he was a champion for the arts in Hampton Roads. He served enthusiastically with nonprofits such as the Tidewater Winds Concert Band and the Arts for Learning Virginia.
“He was a huge friend to the arts and always has been,” Lisa Wigginton, executive director of the Business Consortium for Arts Support said.
A colossal fan of the R&B band Tower of Power, Einhorn paid for the group to perform at the Attucks Theatre in Norfolk in 2018. The concert — planned from his hospital bed — raised $33,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Active in his Norfolk temple, Ohef Sholom, Einhorn blew the Shofar at the High Holy Day services.
The firm will close for the day on Monday. As they move forward, they will honor his memory, mourn his loss and celebrate his legacy.
Sandra J. Pennecke, 757-652-5836, firstname.lastname@example.org