FAF, FASB's Parent Organization, Names Its First CEO


The Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF), FASB’s parent organization on Tuesday approved the election of its first CEO, Teresa S. (Terri) Polley, who will also continue in her role as president of the organization.


FAF is the independent, private-sector organization responsible for the oversight, administration, and finances of FASB, the Governmental Accounting Standards Board (GASB), and their advisory councils. It is also one of the three sponsors of the blue ribbon panel on private company financial reporting.


Polley is one of the 18 members of that panel, which was created in December 2009 to provide recommendations on the future of U.S. accounting standards for private companies. The AICPA and the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy are co-sponsors.


At its next meeting, which will take place Dec. 10, the panel is poised to recommend that FAF move to U.S. GAAP with exceptions for private companies and that those standards should be set not by FASB but by a separate board under FAF’s oversight.


The panel’s staff is working to draft a list of recommendations before the panel’s Dec. 10 meeting to determine how a separate board would be constituted and interact with the FASB board. The panel will fine-tune that draft at its December meeting and is expected to make recommendations in a report to FAF in January. The report will be public.


FAF is likely to discuss these recommendations at its February meeting but may need to deliberate further.


Many speculate that FAF trustees will expose any proposed structural or process changes for public comment, consider that feedback and finalize a set of changes. Timing of the decisions around those changes and potentially creating a private company board would be tied to how quickly FAF can take action.


Polley’s promotion to CEO of the FAF is intended to better reflect the expanding responsibilities she has assumed since being appointed president in 2008, especially her role in increasing the Foundation’s outreach to investors and other stakeholders in the standard-setting process, according to FAF staff. This includes the 2009 “listening tour,” during which Polley and other FAF members met with diverse groups of constituents around the country to hear their input on the standard-setting process. Under her leadership, FAF also secured a permanent funding source for GASB.   


There are no additional responsibilities attached to Polley’s new role, according to FAF staff, rather, she will continue to spearhead and expand initiatives designed to protect the integrity and independence of the process.


Prior to being appointed president, she served as executive director of Advisory Groups for FASB, acting as the primary liaison between FASB and its constituent organizations that provide input into its decision-making processes.  From 1990 to 1999, Polley served as FAF’s controller .She joined FASB in 1987 as a technical associate from Arthur Andersen and Co., where she was a senior accountant.


She is a CPA, as well as a member of the AICPA and the Connecticut Society of CPAs.


Separately, FAF announced Wednesday that Carol Anthony (John) Davidson, Stephen R. Howe, Jr., W.M. (Mack) Lawhon, and Mary S. Stone have been appointed to the FAF Board of Trustees. Each of the appointments is for a five-year term that begins in January 2011.  


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