About the CPA Designation

BY JAMES REEVES

In “Steering a Course for the Future” ( JofA , Nov.99, page 35), Chairman Robert Elliott debates the need to alter the breadth of the CPA license or membership requirements for the AICPA. He suggests that if we had, over the years, broadened our concept of the CPA, engineering, computer science and law professionals would now be CPAs.

I am concerned that widening the CPA designation to include nonaccounting professionals could be detrimental to the profession. As the designation stands, our clients and the general public have an understanding of the specific qualifications and experience the CPA brings to a task. That would change if the concept of the CPA was expanded. If I needed an attorney, I would hire an attorney, not a CPA.

James Reeves, CPA
Madison, Wisconsin

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