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New chairman, Gerald A. Polansky, reaffirms profession's commitment to highest standards.

The Institute's new chairman of the board of directors, Gerald A. Polansky, addressed more than 1,300 members and guests at the AICPA 104th Annual Members Meeting in San Francisco. In hi inaugural speech, Polansky said the AICPA needs to nurture the agenda set by outgoing Chairman Thomas W. Rimerman as well as develop new initiatives to improve the profession's relationships with its constituencies. In addition to enhancing the financial reporting process and achieving uniformity in standards and licensing, said Polansky, it is essential to curb the liability threat and increase Institute membership to include all CPAs.

Emphasizing the importance of strengthening the CPA's position with its key constitutencies--the public, government and the business community--Polansky urged CPAs to forge partnerships with them, saying, "The AICPA has more than 300,000 public relations agents. You and your colleagues are our front line in the battle to preserve the image of the profession. Raising the general public's consciousness about our fine track record, our programs to maintain ethical standards and the proper role of the auditor will help us immensely."

Noting the scant public awareness of what auditors really do, Polansky added, "It is my judgment that you, as CPAs, and the AICPA should be more aggressive in speaking out on matters--even when doing so is self-serving."

Success in raising the general public perception of the profession's high standards will also positively influence CPAs' image with Washington, he said.

"For those of you who think the audit reform debate on Capitol Hill is of concern only to large firms, think again. It affects each and every CPA," emphasized Polansky. He encouraged CPAs to get to know their elected and appointed representatives and to educate people on matters within their areas of expertise.

Forging a stronger partnership with the business community means first of all recognizing companies' changing needs. Polansky asked, "Why can't we create measurements to recognize human resources, innovation, environmental impacts and productivity?" They are as important to most companies as the traditional measurements the profession compiles, he added. To satisfy the demands of businesses in the information era, CPAs must learn to spot how their traditional role does not meet new circumstances and then adapt, he said. CPAs must work with managements to develop a true cost-benefit test for additional attestations. Polansky summed up, "If we can identify new attestations that meet these criteria, we'll be winners twice over. We will have improved and perhaps expanded our service to our clients. And we will have shown public policy makers that if they want to add real value to the audit function, they should leave it to the accountants."
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Title Annotation:AICPA 104th Annual Members Meeting
Publication:Journal of Accountancy
Date:Jan 1, 1992
Words:438
Previous Article:AICPA 'Strategic Thrusts for the Future.' (report on the accounting profession's long-term objectives and plans)
Next Article:Ray J. Groves and Thomas L. Holton are AICPA Gold Medal winners.
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