Diermeier replaces Brennan as chair of FAF board of trustees

BY KEN TYSIAC

Former CFA Institute President and CEO Jeffrey Diermeier has been elected chairman of the board of trustees of the Financial Accounting Foundation (FAF), succeeding John Brennan.

Brennan, who is chairman emeritus of the investment management company The Vanguard Group, had led FAF’s board since February 2009. While stepping down from the chair’s role, he will remain on the board through the end of his five-year term in December 2013.

FAF also named Ann Marie Petach, who is CFO and senior managing director of Blackrock Inc., to fill a vacant position on its board of trustees. Her term extends to December 2014, when she will be eligible for a three-year reappointment. She previously oversaw Ford Motor Co.’s global pension assets as the company’s treasurer.

In FAF’s announcement Wednesday, Brennan said the moves emphasize the importance of the investor perspective to FAF and its standard-setting boards. FAF is the parent organization of FASB and GASB.

“Jeff Diermeier is a highly regarded investor who has successfully overseen the management of hundreds of billions of dollars in assets over many years and is especially well-qualified to lead the FAF board of trustees,” Brennan said in a statement.

Diermeier will serve a three-year term. He retired at the end of 2008 from his leadership position with the CFA Institute and joined the FAF trustees in 2009. He previously served as global chief investment officer at UBS Global Asset Management.

“I’m firmly committed to maintaining the integrity and independence of our standard-setting boards while working to ensure that the standard-setting process remains fair, open, and transparent to all of our stakeholders,” Diermeier said in a statement.

As the change in leadership takes place, FAF and its standard-setting boards are involved in some high-stakes projects. FAF is establishing the new Private Company Council (PCC), which will recommend exceptions and modifications to U.S. GAAP for private companies. The PCC is expected to meet for the first time in the fourth quarter of 2012.

FASB also is involved in convergence projects with the International Accounting Standards Board on revenue recognition, leases, and financial instruments. And comment letters are due Nov. 16 on a FASB project to improve the effectiveness of disclosures in notes to financial statements.

FAF President and CEO Terri Polley said that under Brennan’s leadership, the trustees expanded their outreach and implemented major changes such as the creation of the PCC and the post-implementation review process.

Ken Tysiac ( ktysiac@aicpa.org ) is a JofA senior editor.

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