PCAOB Director of International Affairs S. Bruce Wilson to Retire
The Public Company Accounting Oversight Board announced today that S. Bruce Wilson, Director of International Affairs, is planning to retire after more than five years at the PCAOB and nearly 40 years in public service.
Mr. Wilson has led the PCAOB's efforts to negotiate and implement cooperative arrangements with non-U.S. auditor oversight bodies around the world, during a period of expansive growth in both the number of PCAOB cooperative agreements and the extent of the coordination that those agreements support.
"Bruce is a highly effective international negotiator and policy advisor, and he has assembled an outstanding team in the Office of International Affairs," said PCAOB Chairman James R. Doty.
"With his ability to simplify complex political and legal challenges, to gain the respect and trust of both colleagues and negotiating partners, and to design practical and effective solutions, Bruce helped the PCAOB achieve its vision to establish vibrant cooperation among audit regulators," he added.
The PCAOB now conducts inspections of registered public accounting firms in 50 jurisdictions outside the U.S., including joint inspections with regulators in 20 countries. To support that work, Mr. Wilson and his team in the Office of International Affairs maintain constructive working relationships with audit regulators in these 50 non-U.S. jurisdictions.
During his tenure, Mr. Wilson and the team concluded new bilateral cooperation agreements with 12 non-U.S. audit regulators and made substantial progress on a number of other such agreements.
Also during his tenure, the European Commission twice renewed its Adequacy Decision allowing EC member states to engage in joint inspections and other oversight activities with the PCAOB. The second renewal, in 2016, extends for six years, which is twice the term of previous decisions.
Mr. Wilson and his team successfully updated PCAOB bilateral agreements with 10 EU member state regulators in response to the 2016 Adequacy Decision and EU audit reforms.
They also contributed significant assistance to numerous PCAOB cross-border enforcement investigations by, among other ways, concluding a bilateral enforcement agreement with Chinese authorities in 2013.
Mr. Wilson and his team also played a key role in the growth and development of the International Forum of Independent Audit Regulators (IFIAR), whose membership of independent audit regulators has increased to 52 jurisdictions.
As the PCAOB representative, Mr. Wilson helped IFIAR establish a permanent secretariat to assist IFIAR members in carrying out IFIAR's various cross-border initiatives to further audit quality and investor protection.
He and his team also coordinated and provided expert technical support for PCAOB involvement in six IFIAR working groups and their numerous work streams. They also organized and hosted IFIAR's 2014 annual plenary meeting in Washington.
They hosted the PCAOB annual International Institute on Audit Regulation as well, transforming it into the preeminent international conference on audit oversight. In 2016, the Institute hosted nearly 90 officials from 36 non-U.S. audit regulators as well as 11 officials from four international organizations.
"It has been a great privilege to serve as the Director of the Office of International Affairs. I am grateful for the tremendous support that I have received from Chairman Doty and PCAOB Board members and staff," said Mr. Wilson.
"Most of all, it has truly been my pleasure to have worked with the talented and accomplished professionals in the Office of International Affairs. I am enormously proud of all they have achieved during my tenure," he added. "Through their efforts, I believe that the PCAOB's long-term strategy of working cooperatively with our international counterparts is strengthening investor protection worldwide."
Mr. Wilson has agreed to continue in an advisory capacity for the near future in order to ensure a smooth transition and complete certain negotiations nearing completion.
Before joining the PCAOB, Mr. Wilson spent eight years as the director of legal affairs at the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland. He served more than 16 years in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, where he negotiated numerous international trade and investment agreements; and more than six years as international trade counsel for the Ways and Means Committee of the U.S. House of Representatives. He also practiced international trade law and policy for six years for two U.S. law firms.
Mr. Wilson holds a B.A. from Stanford University, an M.A. from Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, and J.D. and MBA degrees from George Washington University. He is a member of the bars of the District of Columbia and Virginia.