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Mark Cowan, J.D.

Mark Cowan

Director, Master of Science in Accountancy-Taxation Programs

Professor • (208) 426-1565 • Mail Stop: 1610

Office Number: MBEB 3102

Mark Cowan joined the Department of Accountancy at Boise State in 2004 and teaches graduate and undergraduate courses in taxation. Prior to entering academia, Professor Cowan spent over ten years as a practicing CPA as a tax director at a large ski resort holding company and real estate development firm and a tax manager at Price Waterhouse (now PricewaterhouseCoopers). He currently teaches Partnership Tax Law, Corporate Tax Law, Multistate Taxation, Taxation of Nonprofits, and Survey of Federal Income Taxation. Professor Cowan also serves as the coordinator for the JD/MSAT Concurrent Degree program offered in conjunction with the University of Idaho College of Law. Professor Cowan conducts both legal academic and practitioner research. His research interests include the taxation of nonprofits, tax issues in Indian Country, and multistate tax issues. Professor Cowan has published articles in The Tax Lawyer, the Idaho Law Review, the Florida Tax Review, the Pittsburgh Tax Review, The Journal of College and University Law, The Tax Adviser, The CPA Journal, The ATA Journal of Legal Tax Research, and the Journal of Taxation.


J.D., University of Connecticut

M.S., Taxation, University of Hartford

B.S., Business Administration, University of Connecticut

Teaching Areas

Basic Taxation
Corporate and Partnership Taxation
Multistate Taxation
Nonprofit Taxation

Areas of Expertise

Nonprofit Taxation
Taxation of American Indian Tribes and Tribal Members
Multistate Taxation

Featured Publications

“A Tale of Two EMBAs” (with Kathy Hurley), 161 Tax Notes 1427 (Dec. 17, 2018)

“Mud and Moonlight in Vermont: Unitary Business Lessons from AIG,” 84 State Tax Notes 679 (May 15, 2017).
Topic #1012, Unitary Business, on Thomson Reuters/Tax & Accounting Checkpoint Catalyst Library (2014)

“Assignment of Income at the Ivory Tower: Relaxing the Tax Treatment of Services Donated to Charities by Their Employees,” 40 Journal of College and University Law 1 (2014)

“A GAAP Critic’s Guide to Corporate Income Taxes” 66 The Tax Lawyer 209 (2012)

“Nonprofits and the Sales and Use Tax,” 9 Florida Tax Review 1077 (2010)

“Anatomy of a State/Tribal Tax Dispute: Legal Formalism, Shifting Incidence, Potatoes, and the Idaho Motor Fuel Tax,” 8 ATA Journal of Legal Tax Research 1 (2010)

“Double Taxation in Indian Country: Unpacking the Problem and Analyzing the Role of the Federal Government in Protecting Tribal Governmental Revenues,” 2 Pittsburgh Tax Review 93 (2005)

“Leaving Money on the Table(s): An Examination of Federal Income Tax Policy Towards Indian Tribes,” 6 Florida Tax Review 345 (2004)


John Elorriaga Fellow (2018-Present)
Certified Public Accountant (CPA Certificate is Registered in good standing in Connecticut, not currently licensed)
Admitted to Practice as an Attorney in the Connecticut Courts
Honored Faculty, Top Ten Scholar (2017)
College of Business and Economics Advisory Committee Outstanding Research Award (2014)
College of Business and Economics Advisory Committee Outstanding Teaching Award (2010)
Beta Alpha Psi Most Outstanding Professor Award–Student Choice (2014, 2016)
Boise State University Foundation Scholar in Teaching Award (2011)
Department of Accountancy KPMG Award for the Outstanding Accounting Teacher (2006, 2007, 2009, 2011)
Department of Accountancy Little Morris LLP Award for the Outstanding Accounting Teacher (2016)
Department of Accountancy Deloitte LLP Research Award for the Outstanding Accounting Article (2008, 2012, 2014)
Langroise Faculty Research Scholarship (2009, 2011, 2016)


Editorial Board Member, Journal of Legal Tax Research
Advisor, JD/MSAT Program
Advisor, MSAT Program
Chair, Gem State Tax Symposium