Cynthia M. Fornelli

Former Executive Director


Cindy Fornelli served as the Center for Audit Quality’s Executive Director from 2006 to 2019.

Prior to becoming the CAQ’s first Executive Director, Fornelli was the Regulatory and Conflicts Management Executive at Bank of America. In that role, she was responsible for managing enterprise-wide conflicts that could arise from the bank’s delivery of multiple products and services across several business divisions, particularly as these conflicts related to securities regulation. Fornelli also had responsibility for coordinating enterprise regulatory relations with securities and banking regulators.

Before joining Bank of America, Fornelli was Deputy Director of the Division of Investment Management of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), where she was responsible for implementing SEC policy, rules, and regulations in the investment company and investment advisory industries.

In 2018, Fornelli was named for the 10th time to the NACD Directorship list of the 100 most influential people in corporate governance. Additionally, she appeared for 12 consecutive years on Accounting Today’s roster of the Top 100 Most Influential People. She has been named to CPA Practice Advisor’s list of the Most Powerful Women in Accounting, was included on Compliance Week’s “Top Minds 2017” list, and has received a Special Award of Merit from the American Accounting Association’s Auditing Section.

Fornelli’s appointments include service on the Advisory Board of the Ira M. Millstein Center for Global Markets and Corporate Ownership, the Advisory Board of the John L. Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance at the University of Delaware, the Audit & Risk Oversight Committee Advisory Council of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD), the Board of Directors of the Association of Securities and Exchange Commission Alumni, the Disclosure and Transparency Committee of the International Corporate Governance Network, and the Markets Advisory Council of the Council of Institutional Investors. She also served on the NACD’s 2010 Blue Ribbon Commission on the Audit Committee and 2009 Blue Ribbon Commission on Risk Governance.

Fornelli is a graduate of Purdue University and received her JD at The George Washington University. A former securities lawyer, she is a member of the District of Columbia Bar and the American Bar Association.