AICPA News Update - Special Issue - Fall Council 2014 Highlights

October 21, 2014

AICPA 2013-14 Annual Report: Powering CPAs
AICPA News Update
Oct 21, 2014 Volume 21 No. 40


The AICPA governing Council's fall 2014 meeting took place this week. Updates were provided on several important issues to the CPA profession as outlined below.
Fall Council Edition
Tommye E. Barie, CPA, Elected as Chair of AICPA Board of Directors
  Tommye E. Barie, CPA, on Oct. 21 became the AICPA’s chair of the board of directors for a one-year term ending Oct. 2015. Her inaugural speech, Relevance, Rigor and Reach: Building from the Core, focuses on how the CPA’s foundation contributes to the sustainability, strength and agility of the profession. Barie compared guiding the profession’s future to one of her favorite activities: kiteboarding. “Out on that kiteboard, maneuvering to catch the wind, I watch the waves… I know that if I am not vigilant, I will travel a great distance in a direction I don’t want to go. I want to control my direction. That’s where our profession is today – charting a course to our destination and making sure we leverage the winds to position us for success.” Read this Journal of Accountancy profile of Barie for more information.

Council Members Hear Updates on Issues Affecting the CPA Profession
  Updates were provided on several important issues to the CPA profession. Arleen Thomas, CPA, CGMA, AICPA Senior Vice President -- Management Accounting and Global Markets, highlighted important milestones leading to 2015 for the Chartered Global Management Accountant designation. In a separate presentation, she and others explored the evolution of the Uniform CPA Examination and discussed how it might change for the next version scheduled to launch in 2017. Susan Coffey, CPA, CGMA, Senior Vice President – Public Practice & Global Alliances, updated Council on the profession’s Enhancing Audit Quality initiative. She also spoke about amending the Code of Professional Conduct to align its definition of attest with that of the new Uniform Accountancy Act; Council passed a resolution revising the code accordingly. Catch up on all the Council actions with the AICPA Insights Twitter stream.

Governing Council Approves New Not-for-Profit Section; Broadens Section Membership Requirements
  The AICPA governing Council voted to establish a not-for-profit section to support members working within, or supporting clients within, this fast-growing business sector. The resolution allows for professionals who have management or governance responsibilities with respect to an organization that meets the definition of an industry-specific membership section of the AICPA to join that section as Non-CPA Associate members. The resolution also allows CPA candidate and student affiliate members to join AICPA member sections to expose younger members to specialty areas earlier in their careers. The Not-for-Profit Section will deliver high-quality, timely information, tools and resources that will improve the governance, financial reporting and tax reporting of not-for-profits. The Not-for-Profit Section will launch in spring 2015.

New Resources Launched to Help Your Organization Achieve Diversity
  The AICPA’s Diversity and Inclusion team, along with the National Commission on Diversity and Inclusion, has released new resources to help CPA firms and organizations enhance their diversity and inclusion efforts. The Accounting Inclusion Maturity Model evaluates firms’ current diversity and inclusion practices through a thorough online assessment while the Recruitment and Retention Toolkit helps businesses attract, recruit and retain diverse talent. These tools will help organizations ensure that diversity and inclusion initiatives are part of their strategy and culture.

FASB Focusing on Simplification
  Financial Accounting Standards Board Chairman Russell Golden explained that reducing complexity and cost - while retaining the relevance of financial reporting to users - will remain a focus of FASB in the coming years. Read this Journal of Accountancy article for additional coverage of Golden's presentation to the AICPA governing Council.

AICPA Honors Two Members with Gold Medal Award; Sustainable Award Winner Announced
  The AICPA honored former AICPA Chairman of the Board of Directors (2009-10), Robert R. Harris, CPA/CFF, CGMA, and co-founder of the National Association of Black Accountants, Frank Ross, CPA, with the AICPA Gold Medal Award for Distinguished Service. The award recognizes a person whose influence on the accounting profession as a whole is especially notable in comparison to other leaders. Harris served on the AICPA Board of Directors from 1995-98 and 2008-11 and serves as an ambassador of the International Integrated Reporting Council. He also served as chair of the AICPA’s Certified in Financial Forensics Credential Committee from 2011-14. Ross serves on the AICPA’s National Commission on Diversity and Inclusion and served on the Minority Business Development and Minority Initiatives committees. In 1968, he was one of the nine co-founders and the first national president of the National Association of Black Accountants. Additionally, the AICPA announced that James L. Brown, CPA has been honored with the Sustained Contribution Award, which recognizes members who have contributed measurably to the AICPA and the accounting profession with a long and exemplary record of volunteer service. Brown served on four AICPA senior technical committees and served on or chaired more than 20 AICPA task forces and subcommittees, which covered a wide range of topics. More information on all the award winners is available on the AICPA’s Press Center.

Examine Clichés in Approach to Innovation
  Entrepreneurship expert Luke Williams spoke to the AICPA governing Council about sparking innovation. To find business areas ripe for disruption, examine assumptions about your processes, your prices or your products, Williams said. Read more about Williams’ presentation in this Journal of Accountancy article.

Power of the CPA Profession Highlighted in AICPA 2013-14 Annual Report
  The AICPA's Annual Report covering Aug. 1, 2013, through July 31, 2014, is now available on This year's annual report, “Powering CPAs, ” highlights the growth and strength of the accounting profession. AICPA membership has risen by more than 20 percent in just the last few years, reflecting an active and vibrant profession that continues to attract ambitious and committed professionals. The 2013-14 Annual Report features some of the successes and initiatives that foretell the profession’s continued success.