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Author: Andy Goldstein, NASBA Electronic Media Specialist and Webmaster
Posted: November 20, 2013

CarlosJohnsonDuring his inaugural address at NASBA’s 106th Annual Meeting, Carlos Johnson, CPA, Ed.D., formally accepted his role as NASBA’s Chair for 2013-14 and outlined what he hopes to accomplish while serving the organization this upcoming year.

Johnson said it is possible to enhance the ultimate mission of public protection by strengthening NASBA’s relevance and the brand of each Board of Accountancy through three initiatives:

  • Proactive outreach
  • Building relationships
  • Attracting the best and the brightest into the accounting profession

“We have many publics, we have many constituencies,” said Johnson. “If we work with them, we can do anything. We will not be as effective by ourselves.”

Proactive Outreach

In discussing proactive outreach, Johnson lauded the resources accountants bring to their communities and their states, and encouraged NASBA membership to put those resources to good use by being proactive and involved in their communities.

“We are more than just regulators. We are members of the community we regulate,” he said. “By being the positive force in your community and being involved, you will raise the brand of your Board of Accountancy.”

To illustrate his point, Johnson gave examples of three CPAs who change the perception of accountants and the Boards of Accountancy by going above and beyond their professional duties to serve:

  • Current Chair of the Oklahoma Board of Accountancy, Vicky Petete, CPA, serves as faculty advisor to the Student Center for the Public Trust (StudentCPT) chapter at East Central University in Ada, Okla., as well as being active in her church. Her efforts in the accounting and banking professions led to her induction in the Oklahoma Society of CPAs’ Hall of Fame.
  • Jose Rodriguez, CPA, was originally a member of the Florida Board, and after his firm relocated him to North Carolina, he made the choice to reach out and make the connections to continue his service of public protection at the North Carolina State Board of CPA Examiners, of which he is now president. He also serves as an advisor at the university level and is involved in various civic activities.
  • Sandy Wilson, CPA, is head of the audit department at her firm. She is also a former member of the NASBA Board of Directors and former chair of the CPA Examination Review Board. Her efforts within the profession have earned her the Alaska Society of CPAs’ Public Service Award.

Johnson also suggested that Boards can increase outreach by scheduling meetings on university campuses, which enhances Board relevancy and brings knowledge of Board activities to students and academia.

Building Relationships

Johnson said that relationships are a key component to the personal and professional lives of regulators, and urged attendees to meet with Congressional representatives and gubernatorial staff to enhance and build relationships, because he said Governors do not necessarily look at certain skill sets needed to enhance the effectiveness of boards, rather, they often select individuals with whom they have relationships and a rapport.

Johnson also stressed the importance of building a strong relationship with state CPA societies.

“A strong relationship with the state society makes for an efficient and effective legislation program when you need it,” said Johnson. “We cannot operate in an isolated environment.”

Attracting the Best and Brightest

Boards of Accountancy play a pivotal role in attracting the best and brightest minds to the accounting profession, and Johnson said he believes that a strong profession will lead to enhanced public protection.

“I urge you to develop a relationship with secondary education programs,” said Johnson. “Reach out and offer to speak at high schools. That is where our students will come from.”

He also pointed out NASBA’s many contributions to the strength of the profession, including the Accounting Education Research Grant Program, the Accountancy Licensing Library, the NASBA Report on the CPA Exam, and NASBA’s involvement and membership in the American Accounting Association, and pledged that NASBA will continue to work to bolster its relevance, along with working to enhance the effectiveness of the Boards of Accountancy.

Johnson also said that diversity continues to be a central focus for NASBA, and that the organization will continue to reach out and build productive relationships with the National Association of Black Accountants, the Educational Foundation for Women in Accounting, the Native American Finance Officers Association, and the Association of Latino Professionals in Finance and Accounting.

NASBA looks forward to a busy and successful year of public protection and increased relevancy under Johnson’s leadership. Below is a video of Johnson’s speech.

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