Corporate Finance & Governance | Leadership / Management | Legislative / Regulatory

Here’s why it pays for CFOs to be CPAs

Still think there's no reason for a CFO to be a CPA?

Think again.'s Stephen Taub tells the story of former SmartForce CFO David C. Drummond, who recently settled charges with the SEC as part of an investigation into alleged accounting irregularities. According to the SEC, "SmartForce overstated revenue by $113.6 million and net income by $127 million during a 3 1/2-year period ending in mid-2002," Taub writes.

But that's not the interesting part. That part comes from Drummond's attorney, who said, "In retrospect, Mr. Drummond acknowledges that he would have been better served in his role at SmartForce had he possessed an accounting background."

File that one under "Duh!" But for those of you who still aren't sure why it pays for CFOs to be CPAs, read this free white paper from the AICPA. It's entitled CPAs as CFOs: Why You Should Have a CPA in Your C-Suite, and it takes a closer look at why "CPAs are uniquely qualified to meet the challenges of the evolving role of the CFO."


Bill Sheridan