New York (Feb. 24, 2004) -- Big Four firm KPMG elected Joseph Mauriello, 59, as deputy chairman of its U.S. audit, tax and advisory unit effective immediately, succeeding Jeff Stein, who retired Jan. 31 following a top-level shake-up in the firm’s tax arm.

The election of Mauriello -- ratified by the firm’s 1,600 partners -- comes as KPMG has come under fire from regulators regarding certain of its former tax-shelter products.

Last week, KPMG acknowledged that the Department of Justice had launched an investigation into its tax shelter strategies and late last year, the firm’s tax executives were grilled before a Senate subcommittee regarding KPMG’s marketing of certain tax-shelter products.

As a result of the sweeping changes at the tax unit, Stein retired and Jeff Eischeid, partner-in-charge of the tax practice's personal financial planning practice, relinquished that post and was put on administrative leave.

The firm then named James Brasher as vice chair of tax services and John Chopack as vice chair of tax services operations. Brasher succeeded Richard Smith, who took on new responsibilities with the firm's global tax operation. Chopack replaced William Hibbitt, who returned to a client service role.

Mauriello most recently served as vice chair, financial services, as a member of the firm's Management Committee, and as the Americas representative to the KPMG Global Financial Services Committee. He has also served the firm as a member of the Board of Directors, an SEC reviewing partner and national director for thrifts and banking.

Mauriello’s term runs through the firm's fiscal 2006.

-- WebCPA staff

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