Mitchell, Titus & Co., a New York based, black-owned accounting firm, recently opened a branch office in Washington, continuing a Cinderella story which began seven years ago.

The company has grown from five employes in 1973 to 75. The Washington office, headed by partner Ron Walker, currently has a staff of 10 and plans to double that figure by this time next year.

Managing partner Bert Mitchell points out that all the firm's growth has been internally generated and not the result of merger.

Relying on its ability to provide personalized service, Mitchell, Titus specializes in accounting services for non-profit organizations and government agencies, according to Mitchell.

"Particularly in non-profit organizations, there was a lack of concentration on management techniques," Mitchell said in an interview. "We try to improve those management techniques."

Some of the firm's non-profit clients include the National Council of Negro Women, Opportunity Funding Corp. and Manpower Demonstation Research Corp.

"Many of our clients were former clients of the big eight accounting firms," Mitchell stated. "We're smaller and very attentive to the specific needs of these organizations."

Recently the firm has become more involved in energy-related business. It is currently helping the Department of Energy conduct an audit of the major oil companies. "We are emerging as an energy specialist firm," Walker said. "We know a lot about the DOE regulations and the problems of the oil companies."

Walker said that in spite of the recession, many of his clients are expanding business. "It's difficult for them to have access to the traditional markets of equity capital," said Walker. "We advise our clients on the best ways to get additional capital.

"They tend to lean on us because we do stress management depth and stress the strengthening of the management infrastructure."

Walker said that the company is "feverishly" recruiting people for both its New York and Washington offices adding that "we're going through a very careful planning and growth."