Monday, February 27, 2012

SEC Investor Protection Culture Embedded at PCAOB Says Member Goelzer

Outgoing PCAOB Member Dan Goelzer said that he and other Board Members have tried to instill at the PCAOB the same culture of single-minded focus on the best interests of investors and the same pride in excellence through open and robust debate that have been hallmarks of the SEC. In remarks at the Annual William O. Douglas Award Dinner, Mr. Goelzer, a former SEC General Counsel,noted that the PCAOB is under the SEC's oversight and works hand-in-hand with the Commission to further the interests of the investing public in fair and accurate audited financial reporting.

At a time when confidence in auditing was severely shaken, he continued, the first Board Members were able to tap into the same sense of mission and excitement that the early Commissioners must have felt in the wake of the 1929 crash. But the PCAOB had an advantage that the founders of the SEC did not, he observed, the example and support of the SEC itself. As he prepares to leave the Board, he emphasized the strong commitment of both the PCAOB and SEC to investor protection and full disclosure.

Mr. Goelzer was appointed by the SEC as a founding member of the PCAOB in October 2002. In 2007, the SEC unanimously reappointed him to serve an additional term of five years. He served as Acting Chairman of the PCAOB from August 2009 through January 2011. Throughout his tenure, Member Goelzer has consistently exhibited a strong commitment to the Board's mission to protect the interests of investors and further the public interest in the preparation of informative audit reports.

Mr. Goelzer is Vice-Chair of the International Forum of Independent Audit Regulators (IFIAR), of which the PCAOB is a member. IFIAR engages in dialogue with the major multi-national firms, both at the plenary meeting and working group level. In particular, IFIAR's Global Public Policy Committee Working Group provides a central forum for regular dialogue between audit regulators and the six largest audit firms regarding audit challenges and quality control system improvements. To the extent specific issues emerge regarding risk disclosure auditing, Member Goelzer has suggested that these mechanisms could be used to discuss those issues with the large firms.