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Subject: Thomas Flynn, 90, Administrator During 70's Fiscal Crisis

Puerto Rico
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Date Posted: April 16, 2003 1:59:31 EDT

Thomas David Flynn, a retired New York accounting executive and the first chairman of the Municipal Assistance Corporation, which was known as Big Mac during the city's dark fiscal days in the mid-1970's, died on Saturday while on a family vacation in Puerto Rico. He was 90 and lived in Princeton, N.J., having moved there recently after 50 years in Sands Point, N.Y.

Mr. Flynn retired in 1975 as vice chairman of the accounting firm of Arthur Young & Company. That June, Gov. Hugh L. Carey named him to head the state control board created to manage New York City's finances as it teetered on the brink of default. He was replaced as chairman by William M. Ellinghaus two months later but remained a member of the board until January 1979.

Thomas Flynn was born in Los Angeles. His father, John T. Flynn, was an editor of The New York Sun and The New Haven Register as well as a nationally syndicated columnist and author. The son earned renown as Tommy Flynn, a championship tennis and squash player from his college days, and he remained a tennis, skiing and jogging enthusiast for life.

He graduated Phi Beta Kappa in economics in 1935 from Princeton, where he also played varsity ice hockey and was voted best athlete of his class. He worked as a staff assistant for the Senate Committee on Interstate Commerce and in 1938 received an M.B.A. in accounting at the Columbia Graduate School of Business.

Mr. Flynn then was on the staff of the Federal Trade Commission but in 1940 joined Arthur Young as a certified public accountant and partner. He rose to senior partner before being named vice chairman of the management committee of the international accounting firm.

In 1970, the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants honored him with its gold medal, the highest award for distinguished service in his profession.

He was a trustee emeritus of Columbia University, where he was elected a trustee 28 years ago. He was also a past president of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and of the Circumnavigators Club, and a director emeritus of the National Bureau for Economic Research.

Mr. Flynn is survived by his wife of 62 years, Harriett Howland Flynn; two daughters, Susan F. Gordon of Tenafly, N.J., and Christine Flynn Segal of Manhattan; a son, John H., of Roslyn, N.Y.; and six grandchildren.

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