Council Votes to Continue Developing Global Credential


  

 

Inside AICPA

One CPA pays homage to another…Institute’s new vice-chairman takes
office…Global designation earns continued Council support…Outstanding tax
CPA receives honors…PFS credential requirement revised…AICPA multimedia
group wins accolades…Piluso and Tarantino cited for distinguished service

CPA ( C oincidence, P henomenon, A dventure) Stories:
Mr. Chairman Meets Mr. Centenarian

Part 1. A few months ago, former AICPA board chairman Stuart Kessler was on his way to Lincoln Center on the New York City subway when he noticed an elderly gentleman staring at his CPA lapel pin. The man asked what the pin was and Kessler explained, adding that he was proud to wear it. When the man said he too was a CPA, Kessler offered to send him a pin. As Kessler was exiting the subway car, the man called out his name, Max Grill, and his address—with the assistance of his fellow passengers who passed the information along to the departing Kessler. Kessler mailed the pin.

Part 2. A few days later Kessler received a newsletter in the mail, which, much to his amazement and pleasure, carried a feature story on one Max Grill, a philanthropist. As it turns out, Grill, who is 100 years old, is a practicing CPA who dispenses tax and financial planning advice from the Manhattan office he goes to every day. He’s a veteran of World War I who believes luck brought him longevity and good health—and that investing long-term in good companies is the best advice.

So if you are in New York and traveling on the D train, look for Max Grill wearing his shiny new CPA pin.

AICPA Names Castellano Vice-Chairman

At its fall meeting, the AICPA governing council elected James G. Castellano vice-chairman of the Institute’s board of directors for 2000–01. He is a former council member and had also served an earlier term on the board.

Castellano is a member of the CPE executive committee and, as vice chairman, a member of the finance committee. He previously served as chairman of the AICPA committees on management of an accounting practice (1995–97), future issues (1990) and technical issues (1984–85).

Castellano is managing partner of Rubin, Brown, Gornstein & Co. LLP in St. Louis.

Council Votes to Continue Developing Global Credential

By a large margin, the AICPA governing council at its fall meeting approved a resolution to further pursue the establishment and promotion of a global professional designation. To that end the resolution advocates including other international bodies and state CPA societies in new and ongoing development activities.

In the resolution Council expressed confidence that obtaining the new credential will better position CPAs as strategic business advisers capable of providing a broad array of services in the new economy.

Further, Council said, the AICPA should hold rights in the United States to administer and award the designation and should consider establishing a separate entity or affiliate to be the member organization for U.S. credential holders.

To ensure members are kept informed and can participate in development, Council instructed the Institute to design and implement a credential information and feedback program. The AICPA also will prepare financial projections that demonstrate the credential project’s financial viability, along with market research results and an analysis of how the designation could affect student enrollment in accounting programs.

Harvey Coustan Wins Dixon Award

Harvey Coustan, former partner-in-charge of Ernst and Young’s national tax practice division, is this year’s recipient of the Arthur J. Dixon Memorial Award. The annual award—the highest given by the accounting profession in the area of taxation—was presented by the Institute’s tax division at the AICPA national conference on federal taxes in Washington, D.C.

Coustan currently is an assistant professor in taxation at DePaul University, having retired from the firm in 1998. He serves on the AICPA council and on the Illinois state society’s board of directors.

The award, established in 1981, honors outstanding CPAs in the tax area. Dixon was chairman of the AICPA tax executive committee from 1977 to 1980 and posthumously won the first award named in his honor.

Institute Issues Updated Guidelines for PFS Credential

The AICPA has revised requirements for the personal financial specialist (PFS) credential, which it established in 1987 for members committed to personal financial planning as a practice discipline. Until recently, members were evaluated based on business experience and examination. Now, they will also be evaluated in a new area—lifelong learning.

Lifelong learning includes both traditional methods such as continuing professional education courses and nontraditional ones such as self-directed reading and research. Advanced degrees such as a JD or MBA, professional writing credits, conference presentations or participation on personal financial planning association committees will count towards earning the credential.

PFS candidates will be assessed using a point system (mirroring that for the AICPA certified information technology professional), with a total of 100 points being required to qualify for the credential.

On January 1 the Institute launched an online PFS application-cum-assessment tool at http://pfs.aicpa.org .

Videos Earn Top Honors

Two video productions created by the AICPA’s multimedia group recently were recognized for excellence by the Aurora Awards, a competition for independent film and video producers.

The group’s opening video for the 1999 AICPA fall Council meeting, titled “Welcome to the New Millennium,” won platinum and best in show awards for its depiction of changing perspectives and perceptions that have contributed to a new image of CPAs.

Another of the group’s videos, “AICPA Top Ten Technologies 2000 Highlights”—a review of the latest technological trends affecting CPAs—was awarded a gold medal.

AICPA Recognizes Gold Medal Winners

At the fall council meeting the Institute awarded this year’s Gold Medal for Distinguished Service, its highest honor, to two CPAs. Robert Mednick, chairman of the awards committee and a former AICPA board chairman, congratulated winners Richard E. Piluso, vice-president of internal audit for Loews Corp. in New York and former AICPA treasurer, and Dominic A. Tarantino, a former AICPA chairman who retired from Price Waterhouse in 1998 after 41 years.

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