New York (May 6, 2002) -- As what's left of embattled accounting firm Arthur Andersen unravels, former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, who was charged with overseeing the Big Five firm's flailing reform efforts, shared his thoughts on the state of the profession and what happened at Andersen in an interview with Fortune magazine reporter Bethany McLean Thursday.

"I had a very romantic notion -- I still get romantic at the age of 75 -- that maybe I can have an impact on changing things," Volcker said of his much-discussed plan to rebuild Andersen as an audit-only entity. "I saw Andersen as a vehicle for showing how an audit firm ought to operate."

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