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Goelzer Tapped For SEC Alumni Award, World Awaits Naming Of His Successor on PCAOB Board; Today Is Comment Deadline On Auditor Independence/Auditor Rotation Concept Release

Dan Goelzer - currently a board member of the PCAOB, and formerly General Counsel and Executive Assistant to the Chairman at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission under several former Chairmen – has been tapped to  receive the prestigious William O. Douglas Award from the Association of SEC Alumni (ASECA), at ASECA’s annual dinner on Feb. 24, 2012. 

As Goelzer prepares his acceptance speech for the Wm. O. Douglas Award (see speeches of past award winners Harvey Pitt, Bill McLucas, and Richard Ketchum), the world awaits the appointment of a new board member at the PCAOB.
As has been widely reported, (see e.g. Auditor’s Auditor Faces Moment of Truth, Sept. 30, 2011 by Jonathan Weil, in Bloomberg’s The Ticker) Goelzer’s term on the PCAOB board expired this fall, and the SEC’s choice of a successor is being closely followed. Goelzer, one of the founding board members of the PCAOB, was previously re-appointed by the SEC to a second term on the board.
According to Colleen Brennan, Director of Public Affairs at the PCAOB, Goelzer’s current term as a board member ended on Oct. 24, 2011; she adds that the term does not ‘expire,’ according to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, until the SEC names a replacement.
In a speech at an AICPA conference last week, SEC Chief Accountant Jim Kroeker voiced his appreciation for Goelzer’s service on the PCAOB, and while not giving away any specifics as to who the SEC may name as Goelzer’s replacement, he noted that person will be a current or former CPA. Here is what he said:
 Although Board Member Goelzer’s term has recently ended,
I am pleased that he is continuing to serve while the Commission completes its
current efforts to appoint his replacement. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act provides
that two of the board members must be current or former CPAs. So while I cannot
share any surprises with you, I can tell you that his replacement will be a
former or current CPA. Although my remarks this morning are my own, I know I
speak on behalf of many in expressing my deep appreciation for Dan’s tireless
effort and service since his appointment as a founding member in 2002,
including having served as Acting Chairman prior to Chairman Doty’s appointment.
My two cents: (please see the disclaimer posted on the right side of this blog) In following
developments at the PCAOB and SEC, I have always been very impressed with Goelzer’s
thoroughness  - in terms of questioning both legal aspects (vis-à-vis existing law), and practical aspects,  of the implications of proposed PCAOB rulemaking, during the question and answer sessions between PCAOB board members and staff which takes place as part of the deliberation of proposed auditing standards at PCAOB open board meetings.
 I was also very impressed that Goelzer, who clearly comes with some high powered training and
experience during and prior to his PCAOB board service (including having served as a former General Counsel at the SEC, but also from his other significant experience detailed in his bio), was able to view and comment on the deliberations of the
SEC Advisory Committee on Smaller Public Companies, as the PCAOB’s observer of those proceedings, with a highly practical eye. For example, Goelzer stated at the SEC Advisory Committee’s early meetings, on June 17, 2005, the following [NOTE: this meeting took place during the time period the SEC and PCAOB were working to improve their respective guidance on implementing Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act – which for the PCAOB,
ultimately resulted in the issuance of Auditing Standard No. 5, replacing Auditing Standard No. 2.]:
I wanted to ask the same kind of question Janet did, but from a little different perspective.
Ed Knight, I think the first suggestion concerning 404 in your statement was that steps be taken to, as you say, incent the CPA firms away from overauditing. I wonder if you had any specific thoughts in mind as to how that might be done? Certainly the sort of thing, at least from my perspective that the PCOAB grappled with in its May 16th statement and also that we are grappling with as we try to structure and operate an inspection program in a way that won't drive people to dysfunctional behavior, but will, in fact, focus on serious quality issues.
 
 
The event at which Goelzer will be honored, ASECA’s annual dinner, coincides timing-wise with the annual Practicing Law Institute’s (PLI) SEC Speaks Conference Feb. 24-25, 2012. (Separate registration required.) 
 
Today’s The Day! Comment Deadline: PCAOB Concept Release on Auditor Independence, Auditor Rotation

In other PCAOB-related news, today is the comment deadline on the
PCAOB’s Concept
Release issued earlier this year on auditor independence, including auditor rotation.
 Close to 250 comment letters were filed as of December 12; a significant number of comment
letters on FASB, SEC and PCAOB proposals are typically filed right up to the comment
deadline.  


 


Posted: 12/14/2011 3:44:59 PM by Edith Orenstein | with 0 comments
Filed under: AICPA,alumni,ASECA,auditor,Bloomberg,Brennan,companies,concept,Douglas,Goelzer,independence,Kroeker,O.,PCAOB,public,release,rotation,Sarbanes-Oxley,SEC,small,speech,Weil,William,ACSPC


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Edith Orenstein