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Chair's corner.

I am honored to serve you as chairman this year and look forward to keeping you informed through these CPA Letter columns. Let me first say that even though I am a member of a small firm in Alabama, I believe each CPA belongs to a family of 330,000 strong, skilled and very able professionals. People depend on us to take care of business by providing assistance that only we can offer. When we as a profession take care of business, we do the "Right Thing." We focus on our core values and mission of serving the public interest. And when we do that together, we are ordinary people achieving extraordinary results.

Now I'll cover my goals for the coming year. As always, the AICPA and the state CPA societies will work together to take care of business in four areas.

First, I believe we must ensure that our profession is constantly responsive to business realities in our fast-moving world. In particular, it is critical that CPAs remain able to deliver their valuable services across state lines without facing unnecessarily complex and conflicting state regulations. To identify and promote solutions to this problem, former AICPA board chair Scott Voynich is leading an Institute committee on mobility that will work toward making it easier for firms and CPAs to do business in multiple states.

I believe it's important, as well, that the profession address the financial reporting needs of private companies and those who do business with them. It's time to create a set of financial reporting standards for private companies, most of which operate in a far different environment from public companies. The Institute and the Financial Accounting Standards Board are now engaged in a joint project on private company financial reporting, including laying plans for the creation of a committee that will make recommendations to the FASB about necessary changes in current and prospective standards.

On another front, I want to reenergize our efforts to open the doors of our profession to all who aspire to meet its challenges and share its commitments. Today diversity is strengthening our nation, but while the face of America has changed, the face of our profession largely has not. In addition, I believe we should make the career ladder accessible to anyone who has the ability and determination to climb it. That means working to find the right mix of flexibility in our companies and to ensure continued advancement for women.

Finally, I want to continue our profession's efforts to promote financial literacy among the American public, who are having a hard time managing their personal finances and need our help. More than 500 million media exposures have been in front of people regarding our successful 360 Degrees of Financial Literacy campaign, and now we're planning to extend the program's reach. The Institute has joined forces with the Ad Council to launch a national public service campaign aimed at young Americans that is focused on financial literacy and the importance of saving. This is a powerful opportunity to promote a valuable message.

We all joined this profession because we wanted to provide public service. I believe in the power of ordinary people to achieve extraordinary results. Together, we can build on our profession's strong foundation to accomplish some extraordinary things in the coming year. I look forward to working with you.

By Jimmy L. Williamson, CPA, Cr.FA, DAB FA

Chairman, AICPA Board of Directors

jimmyw@mdacpa.com
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Author:Williamson, Jimmy L.
Publication:CPA Letter
Date:Nov 1, 2006
Words:576
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