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US Securities and Exchange Commission

SEC Reappoints PCAOB Chair Williams For Second Term

Soyoung Ho  Senior Editor, Accounting and Compliance Alert

· 5 minute read

Soyoung Ho  Senior Editor, Accounting and Compliance Alert

· 5 minute read

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on June 11, 2024, said Erica Williams was appointed to a second term as chair of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB).

She first became chair in January 2022 as part of SEC Chair Gary Gensler’s shakeup of board leadership.

Her second term runs from October 25 through October 24, 2029.

Board members are eligible to serve two terms. In the past, getting a second term was almost automatic. That changed when Gensler’s predecessor, Jay Clayton, decided to replace all board members in December 2017.

As Gensler has done with aggressive rulemaking agenda and enforcement actions at the commission, Williams has also pursued ambitious regulatory activities that have delighted some investor advocates while alarming the auditing profession.

“I thank Erica for her leadership and am pleased that she will continue to serve as Chairperson of the PCAOB,” said SEC Chair Gary Gensler in a statement. “I also thank the PCAOB staff and the Board for their diligent work to ensure that public company financial disclosures can be trusted by investors.”

In a statement, SEC Chief Accountant Paul Munter said he looks forward to continuing to work with Chair Williams “to further the PCAOB’s long-overdue plan to modernize standards and improve audit quality to promote investor protection.”

Munter leads the SEC Office of the Chief Accountant, which helps the commission oversee the PCAOB.

In a statement, Williams said that she is honored to have the SEC’s confidence in her and grateful for the opportunity.

“I’m proud of our work together and eager to continue executing our mission on behalf of investors who depend on US capital markets to build their American dream,” she said.

The reappointment was not a surprise to observers.

“Chairperson Williams has been holding firms accountable; we fully expected her to be reappointed,” said Ro Sokhi, a partner with CPA firm UHY LLP.

Previously, Williams worked at the SEC, including as deputy chief of staff to three former SEC chairs and as assistant chief litigation counsel in the Division of Enforcement.

Before becoming the PCAOB chair, she was a litigation partner with Kirkland & Ellis LLP.


This article originally appeared in the June 12, 2024, edition of Accounting & Compliance Alert, available on Checkpoint.

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