AICPA Campaigns To Repair Damage To Reputation Caused By Enron Scandal

The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is trying to ensure that its reputation is not sullied by the recent scandal involving Enron and the role that improper financial reporting played in it..

AICPA has created a section of its Web site dedicated to Enron called The Enron Crisis: The AICPA, The Profession & The Public Interest. This page includes links to media coverage of Enron and official Enron-related statements and testimony from AICPA. It also includes documents related to GAO independence standards and the past, present and future regulatory environment.

In a statement, AICPA champions its integrity, stating: " The CPA profession has a successful, 100-year history serving the public interest through the core service of financial statement audits. We believe that the independent audit has contributed greatly to the issuance of reliable financial statements, which help attract the capital that finances American business. Close to 17,000 public company audits are completed successfully every year without restatement or allegations of impropriety. The AICPA provides invaluable guidance and tools to auditors to assist them in the conduct of audit engagements.

"The AICPA also plays a central role in establishing accounting and auditing standards. Our profession has zero tolerance for CPAs who do not adhere to the rules. In enforcing those rules, the self-regulatory process has generally been effective. However, the profession recognizes the need for improvements in oversight. Therefore, we have pledged to cooperate fully with SEC's proposal to change the regulation of the accounting profession."

AICPA is taking its message to print media as well. The Institute has launched an ad campaign encompassing the sentiments expressed above.

This month a full -page ad is appearing in The Chicago Tribune, Dallas Morning News, Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, USA Today, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post.

The simple, text-only ad paints a picture of the CPA profession as being a group of diligent, hard-working individuals who "depend on your trust and work to earn it

each day, every day."