April 21, 2014

Panel of Governance Experts to Tackle Audit Committee Disclosure

Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance, Center for Audit Quality to Host Discussion on “Call to Action” Report
 

Washington, DC  A panel of corporate governance experts on April 22nd will discuss the conclusions of a recent report, Enhancing the Audit Committee Report: A Call to Action, which calls on audit committees of public companies of all sizes to proactively consider strengthening their public disclosures. The Call to Action was issued last November by the Audit Committee Collaboration, a group of nationally recognized U.S. corporate governance and policy organizations. 

Hosted at the University of Delaware by the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance and the Center for Audit Quality (CAQ), the event will bring together audit committee chairs, institutional investors, regulators, and legal experts for a dynamic discussion on trends in audit committee disclosure. The panel will explore the Collaboration’s view that more transparency about the audit committee’s role is one way of increasing investor confidence. 

“This unique discussion involving all of the key parties impacted by the Call to Action will delve into the benefits and potential challenges of implementing and adapting some of the emerging practices cited in the Call to Action,” said Charles Elson, Director of the Weinberg Center. 

According to the Call to Action, it is through its public disclosures that an audit committee has the opportunity to educate others about its critical responsibilities. Recently, investors and regulators have placed a stronger emphasis on the important role of audit committees and the execution of their work. 

“One of the goals behind the Call to Action is to generate an ongoing dialogue around enhanced audit committee disclosure, because one size does not fit all when it comes to disclosure,” said CAQ Executive Director Cindy Fornelli. “Additionally, some of the latest best practices, such as those discussed in the Call to Action, can help audit committees communicate the good work they are doing—without adding to their already substantial workloads.”

MODERATOR

Charles M. Elson, Edgar S. Woolard, Jr., Chair in Corporate Governance, and Director of the John L. Weinberg for Corporate Governance, University of Delaware      

PANELISTS

  • Martin F. Baumann, Chief Auditor and Director of Professional Standards, Public Company Accounting Oversight Board
  • Robert E. Bostrom, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary, Abercrombie & Fitch
  • Michelle Edkins, Managing Director, Global Head, Corporate Governance & Responsible Investment, BlackRock
  • Cindy M. Fornelli, Executive Director, Center for Audit Quality
  • Michele J. Hooper, Managing Partner, The Directors’ Council; Audit Committee Chair, PPG Industries, Inc. and Audit Committee Member, UnitedHealth Group Incorporated
  • Laban P. Jackson, Chairman and CEO, Clear Creek Properties, Inc.; and Audit Committee Chair, JPMorgan Chase & Co.
  • Joann S. Lublin, Management News Editor, The Wall Street Journal
  • John W. Noble, Vice Chancellor, Delaware Chancery Court
  • James H. Quigley, CEO Emeritus - Deloitte LLP; Audit Committee Chair, Hess Corporation; Audit & Examination Committee Chair, Wells Fargo & Company; and Audit Committee Member, Merrimack Pharmaceuticals

EVENT DETAILS

Tuesday, April 22, 2014
9:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 
Gore Recital Hall, University of Delaware, 110 Orchard Rd, Newark, DE, 19716

All media must register to attend and agree to follow the Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance press guidelines.Contact Erica Hurtt, (ehurtt@thecaq.org) for more information.

* We would like to encourage frank discussion at the event. Following usual Weinberg Center practice, members of the press will be free to write about what is said at the conference without attribution. However, if media want to quote anyone specifically, they will need to get that individual’s permission before they use it. 

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About the Organizations

Center for Audit Quality
www.TheCAQ.org

The Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) is an autonomous public policy organization dedicated to enhancing investor confidence and public trust in the global capital markets. The CAQ fosters high quality performance by public company auditors, convenes and collaborates with other stakeholders to advance the discussion of critical issues requiring action and intervention, and advocates policies and standards that promote public company auditors’ objectivity, effectiveness and responsiveness to dynamic market conditions. Based in Washington, D.C., the CAQ is affiliated with the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants. 

Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance 
www.lerner.udel.edu/centers/weinberg

The John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance was established in 2000 and is part of the Alfred Lerner College of Business and Economics at the University of Delaware. It is one of the longest-standing corporate governance centers in academia, and the first and only corporate governance center in the State of Delaware, the legal home for a majority of the nation’s public corporations. The Center’s mission is to provide a forum for business leaders, members of corporate boards, shareholders, the judiciary, the legal community, academics, graduate and undergraduate students and others interested in corporate governance issues to interact, learn and teach, with the goal of positively impacting and improving the field of corporate governance. Center programs, publications and academic research have helped to shape and influence numerous corporate governance debates and developments on a national and international level. 

The Audit Committee Collaboration is a partnership of nationally recognized U.S. corporate governance and policy organizations. The organizations came together in 2012 to collaborate on projects intended to leverage their individual efforts to expand audit committee member access to useful tools and materials across the spectrum of public companies in order to strengthen audit committee performance and transparency. For more information or to become a supporter of the Call to Action, visit www.auditcommitteecollaboration.org