AICPA Board Recommends Retaining Specialty Credentials

A six month review of the options of what to do with the AICPA specialty credentials has resulted in a recommendation to the governing council to retain the specialties inside the AICPA.

The credentials in question - Personal Financial Specialist (PFS), Certified Information Technology Professional (CITP), and Accredited in Business Valuation (ABV) - have been supported by the AICPA but were questioned as to the ongoing merit of financially promoting the credentials due to the relatively low number of credential holders. The PFS designation currently has 3,188 holders. ABV has 1,536, and CITP has 527.

The Board concluded that support of the three underlying disciplines would benefit all AICPA members who either practice or have an interest in those areas.

"After studying the issue from a variety of perspectives, we determined we could retain the credentials if we shifted our focus from trying to achieve national market recognition to supporting the underlying disciplines," said Bruce Harper, Chair of the National Accreditation Commission.

Details of the recommendation include:

  • PFS Designation: Will be subsidized up to $4.6 million through 2006, and must break even by July 31, 2006

  • CITP Designation: Will be subsidized up to $5.6 million through 2008, with a requirement to break even by July 31, 2008

  • ABV Designation: Will be subsidized up to $5.75 million with a requirement to break even by July 31, 2008.

The AICPA Governing Council will now vote on the Board’s recommendation at its Fall meeting in New Orleans on Oct. 20 and 21, 2003.

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