Four new members of The Accounting Hall of Fame will be inducted by the American Accounting Association (AAA) in August 2019, during the organization's Annual Meeting in San Francisco, CA. The Accounting Hall of Fame, originated at The Ohio State University in 1950, previously inducted 97 members over the decades of its activity. In 2017 the operations of The Accounting Hall of Fame were assumed by the AAA.

Bruce Behn, a Past President of AAA, who chairs The Accounting Hall of Fame Committee, noted that this year's class of inductees represent an array of recent and contemporary professional and thought leaders from a variety of practice and educational backgrounds. The nomination process engaged members of The Accounting Hall of Fame, the AAA and other professional accounting organizations. The inductees, William Louis Campfield, J. Lee Nicholson, Zoe-Vonna Palmrose, and Stephen Harland Penman are briefly profiled in the following information.

William Louis Campfield (1912-1993) worked in various capacities, including executive management, with the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO), where he is noted for his role in the conversion of the cost accounting system for federal government agencies, and extension of the practitioner-in-residence program, establishing teaching residencies in colleges and universities across the country. He was the first African American inducted into the Beta Alpha Psi accounting fraternity (1937), the first African American to obtain the CPA designation in North Carolina (1941) and became the first African American CPA/Ph.D. after earning his doctorate from the University of Illinois (1951). He served as Vice President of the American Accounting Association, on the faculty of over 20 universities, and authored over 100 articles, 11 of those in The Accounting Review.

J. Lee Nicholson (1863-1924) was an industrial consultant, author and educator at New York University and Columbia University, and known as a pioneer in cost accounting. He is considered in the United States to be the "father of cost accounting." The History of Accounting: An international encyclopedia, notes that Nicholson was a synthesizer: “His main contribution was to organize, improve, and propagate this new knowledge as it spread from a tiny minority of pioneering firms to the vast majority of manufacturers who still had no formal cost accounting systems at the beginning of the twentieth century" (Chatfield, 2014). As one of the earliest American cost accountants to teach the subject at the university level, he helped standardize practice and facilitated the interaction of ideas between academics and practitioners. He helped establish the National Association of Cost Accountants (NACA) in 1919, and was its first president. NACA was the forerunner of the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA), who celebrate their 100-year anniversary this year.

Zoe-Vonna Palmrose is Professor Emeritus of Accounting at the University of Southern California, and is recognized as an expert in translating the complexities and jargon of accounting into plain English for general audiences. She has published and spoken extensively on financial reporting and auditing, including restatements, materiality, audit litigation, and pricing of audit services. She has received numerous awards including the AAA’s Competitive Manuscript Award, the California Society of CPAs’ Accounting Faculty Fellow Award, and the Deloitte Foundation Wildman Medal Award on two occasions. From 2006 to 2008, she served as Deputy Chief Accountant for Professional Practice in the Office of the Chief Accountant at the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). Treasury and Risk Magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in finance in 2008 for being instrumental in breaking the SEC code on internal controls regulation by drafting much-needed guidance, ensuring that companies can have manageable but effective controls.

Stephen Harland Penman is the George O. May Professor and Chair of the Accounting Division in the Graduate School of Business, Columbia University, where he is also co-director of the Center for Excellence in Accounting and Security Analysis, and director of the master’s program in Accounting and Fundamental Analysis. His research examines the valuation of equity and the role of accounting information in security analysis, and a number of his papers focus on accounting policy issues. He has published widely in finance and accounting journals and conducted seminars on accounting and analysis for academic and professional audiences. This work has been recognized with several awards including the AAA/AICPA Notable Contribution to Accounting Literature Award (1991). In 2002, he was awarded the Deloitte Foundation Wildman Medal Award for his book, Financial Statement Analysis and Security Valuation.

About the American Accounting Association
Promoting excellence in accounting education, research, and practice, the American Accounting Association (AAA) is the largest community of accountants in academia. Founded in 1916, we have a rich and reputable history built on leading-edge research and publications. The diversity of our membership creates a fertile environment for collaboration and innovation. Collectively, we shape the future of accounting through teaching, research and a powerful network, ensuring our position as thought leaders in accounting. For more information about the AAA, please visit http://aaahq.org

The Accounting Hall of Fame was established at The Ohio State University in 1950.


The Accounting Hall of Fame honors accountants who have made, or are making, significant contributions to the advancement of accounting since the beginning of the 20th century. Since its establishment in 1950, 97 leading accountants have been elected to the Hall of Fame.

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Accounting Hall of Fame (AHOF) Committee


Bruce Behn

Chair, Past President AAA

Mary Barth

Past President AAA and AHOF Member

J. Michael Cook

AHOF Member

Olivia Kirtley

AHOF Member

Gary Previts

Past President AAA and AHOF Member

Mary Stone

Past President AAA


Tracey Sutherland

AAA Executive Director

Barbara Brady

AAA Senior Director of Operations

Brian Mittendorf

The Ohio State University

Board of Directors Liaison

Marc Rubin

AAA BOD Liaison/AAA President