The AICPA has announced the creation of the National
Commission on Diversity to serve as champions of diversity within
the accounting profession. The formation of the Commission reflects a
renewed focus on diversity within the profession and the need to
increase the retention and advancement of underrepresented minorities to
better reflect the clients and communities CPAs serve.
The 15-member Commission is comprised of representatives from minority
professional advocacy groups, CPA firms, state CPA societies, and
leaders from business and industry, government, and education. They are
holding their first meeting this week at the AICPAs Durham office and
will meet quarterly.
The AICPA has done a tremendous amount of work to make the profession
more inclusive and we will continue to build upon those efforts, said
Kim Drumgo, vice-chair of the Commission and director of diversity and
inclusion at the AICPA. The Commission brings together a wide range of
stakeholders to address the issue of diversity. This is a critical step
towards ensuring the professions continued growth and ability to meet
the needs of those we serve.
Recent AICPA research provides a snapshot of the ethnic composition of
the profession and establishes a benchmark as the Commission begins its
work. According to the 2011
Trends in Supply of Accounting Graduates and Demand for Public
Accounting Recruits, minorities accounted for 25% of the new
accounting bachelors and masters degree graduates hired by CPA firms
in 2010, an increase from the 17% reported in 2001. The increased number
of graduates can be viewed as a positive sign, but the survey also found
that while minorities make up 20% of professional staff positions, only
six percent of firm partners are ethnically diverse.
The profession has made some encouraging progress recruiting from all
races and ethnicities, but we still have work to do particularly when
it comes to retaining and promoting minorities, said Ken Bouyer,
chairman of the Commission and Americas director of inclusiveness
recruiting at Ernst and Young. Weve formed the Commission because to
continue to move the needle, a lot of people will need to work together.
This issue is critical and ultimately our results will impact the
profession for years to come.
to the U.S. Census, minority-owned businesses increased 45.5 percent
from 2002 to 2007 from 4.0 million businesses to 5.8 million, while
their receipts increased 55.0 percent. These minority-owned businesses
accounted for 21.3 percent of the nation’s businesses and generated $1.0
trillion in receipts.
It is imperative that the professions makeup evolve to reflect the
diversity found in American businesses and society as a whole, said
Barry Melancon, CPA, CGMA, AICPA President and CEO.
The Commission will work toward proposing AICPA strategies to increase
the number of minorities in the accounting profession. This process will
involve investigating and understanding the barriers to the long-term
success of minorities by analyzing recruitment and retention data within
the accounting profession. In addition, the Commission will closely
monitor the population trends and analyze the impact of these trends on
both the profession and the clients CPAs serve.
The board of the Commission, chaired by Bouyer, with Drumgo serving as
vice-chair, is comprised of the following members:
Jeff Chin, CPA – Ascend
Peggy Dzierzawski, CPA –
Michigan Association of CPAs
Lena Ellis, CPA – City of Fort
Manuel Espinoza, CPA – ALPFA
CPA, CGMA – Nolet Spirits USA
George Krull, CPA – AICPA
Richard Levychin, CPA, CGMA – KBL, CPAs
Macias, CPA – Macias, Gini & OConnell, LLP
CPA – Don McCleod, CPA, PC
Lisa Ong, CPA –
Gail Sparks Pitts, CPA – Oakland
Ed Ramos, CPA – Dwyer, Pemberton &
Frank Ross, CPA – Howard University School of
Ralph Thomas, CPA – New Jersey Society of CPAs
More information and resources on the Commission are available at http://www.aicpa.org/Career/DiversityInitiatives/Pages/AICPANationalCommissiononDiversity.aspx
About the AICPA
The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is the
worlds largest member association representing the accounting
profession, with nearly 386,000 members in 128 countries and a 125-year
heritage of serving the public interest. AICPA members represent many
areas of practice, including business and industry, public practice,
government, education and consulting.
The AICPA sets ethical standards for the profession and U.S. auditing
standards for audits of private companies, nonprofit organizations,
federal, state and local governments. It develops and grades the Uniform
CPA Examination and offers specialty credentials for CPAs who
concentrate on personal financial planning; fraud and forensics;
business valuation; and information technology. Through a joint venture
with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), it has
established the Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA)
designation to elevate management accounting globally.
The AICPA maintains offices in New York, Washington, DC, Durham, NC, and
Media representatives are invited to visit the AICPA Press Center at aicpa.org/press.