While such issues as mobility, Sarbanes-Oxley 404, peer review and private company financial reporting continue to impact the accounting profession, keeping the CPA pipeline filled remains the profession’s No. 1 priority, American Institute of CPAs president and chief executive Barry Melancon told attendees at the institute’s spring meeting of  its Governing Council.

“You have 45,000 firms in this country, who are essentially led by Baby Boomers,” said Melancon, who noted that a low percentage of those firms have succession plans in place, and pointed to a recent study that showed small firms have a shockingly high turnover rate of 44 percent. “We need to do a better job if we’re going to prepare CPAs.”

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