When you think of an accountant, what’s the first image that pops up in your mind? It’s okay, you can be honest with us. We know that when most people think of CPAs, they think of glasses-wearing, mild-mannered, perfectionist math nerds. We’re guessing the first person in your mind’s eye when we asked who you think of was NOT Mick Jagger or Janet Jackson.

Surprise! They both studied accounting! Just for fun, let’s take a look at some other famous people who at one time thought they might forge a career in accounting. Maybe you’ll even view future accountants differently after reading this list. 🙂  In addition to legendary musicians Mick Jagger and Janet Jackson, here are five more famous people who studied accounting.


Hall of Famer Cris Carter

NFL wide receiver Cris Carter has said in interviews that he always loved math in school. He studied it at Ohio State and would have been interested in an accounting career if his jaw-dropping football skills hadn’t taken off the way they did.


Led Zeppelin’s Robert Plant

Before he became the “greatest voice in rock,” singer Robert Plant also studied accounting. He’d been drawn to music since early childhood though, so when the opportunity arose he followed his first dream.


Comedian Ray Romano

Before he was a successful standup comedian and star of the sitcom, “Everybody Loves Raymond,” Ray Romano pursued a degree in accounting from Queens College. An eye-opening turn at a local comedy club’s open mic night made him think he might have a career in comedy, after all.


Bestselling Author John Grisham

You’re probably aware that he’s an attorney, but did you know that John Grisham, the king of legal thrillers, also studied accounting? He originally saw himself as a future tax lawyer. But then he wrote The Firm in the early days of his legal career. Its huge success landed him a career as a New York Times Bestselling Author instead.


John D. Rockefeller

Today his last name is synonymous with wealth and power, so it might surprise you to learn he started his career with an accounting background. Rockefeller’s first job was as an assistant bookkeeper. Soon after that though, he and his brother started the early oil refining company that would become Standard Oil one day and lead to John D. Rockefeller becoming the richest American of all time.


IMAGE: Javier Abarca Aguilera / CC0 Public Domain