Center for Audit Quality

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The Center for Audit Quality
Autonomous member-funded non-profit
Founded 2007
Headquarters Washington, D.C., USA
Key people
Cynthia M. Fornelli, Executive Director

About the Center for Audit Quality[edit]

About the Center for Audit Quality The Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) is an autonomous, nonpartisan, nonprofit public policy advocacy organization based in Washington, DC. It is affiliated with the American Institute of CPAs.

The CAQ is "dedicated to enhancing investor confidence and public trust in the global capital markets by fostering high quality performance by public company auditors; convening and collaborating with other stakeholders to advance the discussion of critical issues requiring action and intervention; and, advocating policies and standards that promote public company auditors’ objectivity, effectiveness, and responsiveness to dynamic market conditions."

Founded in 2007, the organization has been led since its inception by Executive Director Cynthia M. Fornelli, a U.S. business leader and former securities lawyer.

Membership and structure[edit]

The CAQ is self-supporting and entirely funded by member dues. Membership in the CAQ is open to U.S. accounting firms registered with the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB). Associate membership is available for U.S. accounting firms not registered with the PCAOB. The CAQ also offers international firm subscriptions.

Policy Issues[edit]

The CAQ engages with regulators and auditing and accounting standards-setters on policy proposals and public company auditing issues. It also provides a forum for its member firms to discuss those issues, share perspectives, and formulate positions. The CAQ works on a wide range of public policy issues, including the following:

  • The auditor's reporting model
  • Audit quality indicators
  • The role of audit committees
  • Financial reporting fraud deterrence and detection
  • Accounting estimates and fair value
  • Financial disclosure
  • Auditor of the future
  • Data security and privacy
  • Sarbanes-Oxley Act implementation and PCAOB rulemaking
  • IFRS
  • Mandatory audit firm rotation
  • Going concern
  • Audit engagement partner identification
  • Corporate governance

The CAQ policy page[1] provides more information on the CAQ's policy work.

Resources on Auditing, Financial Reporting, and Corporate Governance[edit]

The CAQ has produced a range of resources aimed at fostering high performance by public company auditors and enhancing investor confidence. These resources include guides, white papers, webcasts, and research studies.

Examples include:

Visit the CAQ resources[6] page for more information.


The CAQ facilitates research initiatives and provides independent funding of scholarly research projects to address new or significant issues relating to public company auditing and the capital markets.

Since 2009, the CAQ through its Research Advisory Board, has annually funded independent academic research projects on auditing-related topics, including audit quality, professional judgment, professional skepticism, and the value of the audit.

In 2013, the CAQ and the Auditing Section of the American Accounting Association created a joint program designed to facilitate accounting and auditing academics’ ability to obtain access to audit firm personnel to participate in their research projects.

Other CAQ research efforts include:

More CAQ’s research can be found on its website.[12]

Governing board[edit]

A Governing Board made up of chief executive officers from leading public company auditing firms and the AICPA, as well as three independent members from outside the public company auditing profession leads the CAQ.

Governing Board Chair

  • Robert E. Moritz, Chairman and Senior Partner, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

Governing Board Members [13]

  • Joseph M. Adams, Managing Partner and CEO, McGladrey LLP
  • Wayne Berson, CEO, BDO USA, LLP
  • Catherine M. Engelbert, CEO, Deloitte LLP
  • Lynne Doughtie, U.S. Chairman and CEO- Elect, KPMG LLP
  • Michele J. Hooper, President and CEO, The Directors’ Council
  • Stephen R. Howe, Jr., Americas Managing Partner and Managing Partner of the U.S. Firm, EY
  • J. Michael (Mike) McGuire, CEO, Grant Thornton LLP
  • Barry Melancon, President and CEO, American Institute of CPAs
  • Lynn S. Paine, John G. McLean Professor of Business Administration, Senior Associate Dean, Harvard Business School
  • James L. Powers, CEO, Crowe Horwath LLP

Notes or references[edit]

External links[edit]