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Brian Wolohan Joins the CAQ as Senior Director of Professional Practice, Policy and Research

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

~~Former PCAOB Official to Lead CAQ Professional Practice, Policy and Research Team Bolstered by Recent Additions of Two Technical Directors~~ 

Washington, DC – The Center for Audit Quality (CAQ) is pleased to announce that Brian Wolohan has joined the CAQ as Senior Director of Professional Practice, Policy and Research. Wolohan comes to the CAQ from the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB), where he served as Associate Director in the Office of Research & Analysis.

“Brian’s public company auditing research and policy background will greatly benefit the CAQ’s professional practice and policy initiatives,” said CAQ Executive Director Cindy Fornelli. “With his considerable experience in forensic accounting and financial analysis, Brian brings a rich perspective to the CAQ’s efforts to serve investors, public company auditors and the capital markets, and we are thrilled to have him.”

Wolohan spent six years at the PCAOB, during which time he designed and developed many of the audit risk assessment methodologies used by the PCAOB to inform its risk-based inspections program. He conducted research and trainings on structured financial products, fair value of illiquid instruments, and best practices in fraud risk assessment. He has performed extensive analysis in the area of market risks and audit implications and served as a Commissioner on the NACD Blue Ribbon Commission on Risk Governance. 

Prior to joining the PCAOB, Wolohan was Director of Corporate Development at America Online (AOL), where his responsibilities included strategic planning, enterprise valuation, deal negotiation, and acquisition integration. He also spent several years in the Accounting Policy group at AOL, where he consulted on the interpretation of accounting literature and implementation of emerging guidance, conducted financial due diligence on venture capital investments and business combinations, and was responsible for accounting for AOL’s multi-billion dollar securities portfolio.

Wolohan began his career as a CPA in the Audit Services group at Grant Thornton LLP. His work included public stock and debt issuance, private placements, and accounting for financial instruments and securitizations. He graduated cum laude from the University of Maryland at College Park (UMCP) and later returned to UMCP to earn an MBA and a Master’s degree in Finance.

Wolohan leads the CAQ’s growing Professional Practice, Policy and Research team, which was bolstered by the recent additions of Technical Directors Jeffrey Rapaglia and Melanie Merrion. “Brian, Melanie and Jeffrey all bring a background in regulatory and policy matters as well as practical accounting and auditing experience. They will be actively involved in furthering the CAQ’s professional practice activities, including our Role of the Auditor and Anti-Fraud initiatives,” said Fornelli.

Jeffrey Rapaglia, CPA, comes to the CAQ from the PCAOB’s Office of Research and Analysis, where he specialized in forensic accounting and financial statement analysis. Melanie Merrion, CPA, was recently a Senior Manager with Deloitte & Touche LLP in the Office of the Professional Practice Director for Greater Washington, where she was engaged in the firm’s risk management activities and served as a technical resource for accounting, auditing, SEC and compliance matters.

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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. For more information, visit