Four new members of The Accounting Hall of Fame will be inducted by the American Accounting Association (AAA) in August 2021, during the organization’s virtual Annual Meeting. The Accounting Hall of Fame (AHOF) originated at The Ohio State University in 1950. In 2017, the operations of the AHOF were assumed by the AAA. Since its inception, there have been 106 members inducted into the AHOF.
This year’s inductees again represent a diverse group of accounting thought leaders from both practice and educational backgrounds, according to Bruce Behn, a past president of the AAA who chairs The Accounting Hall of Fame Committee. The nomination process engaged members of The Accounting Hall of Fame, the AAA and other professional accounting organizations. This year’s inductees, Arthur Hazelton Carter (1884-1965), David Francis Larcker, Sybil Collins Mobley (1925-2015), and Charles Howard Noski, are briefly profiled in the following information.
Arthur Hazelton Carter (1884-1965) was managing partner of Haskins & Sells (H&S, now Deloitte) from 1930 to 1947 and a leader in the public accounting profession. Carter joined the firm after World War I at the urging of his father-in-law, Elijah Watt Sells. He was called “Colonel Carter” because of his rank in World War I. Carter served as president of the New York State Society of CPAs and the National Association of Cost Accountants. He was an American Institute of Accountants (now AICPA) vice president. During the 1940s, as a Major General, he served as Chief Financial Officer of the U. S. Army. Carter is best known in accounting circles for his promotion of mandatory corporate audits and his 1933 Congressional testimony. His testimony provided one of the better quotations in the history of the accounting profession when Carter was asked by Senator Alben Barkley (later vice president), “Who audits you?” Carter calmly responded, “Our conscience.” Carter’s leadership, as later documented in SEC Accounting Series Release #81, is widely considered to have represented the spirit of the audit franchise awarded to public accountants as reflected in the initial securities law, retaining the role of the private sector in the audit function. Carter was asked by the Secretary of War to return to the Army in 1941 to become the Army’s Chief Financial Officer, where he remained through the end of 1946, even though he was still listed as managing partner of H&S. He professionalized the audits of federal auditors by allowing them to use statistical sampling and to conduct audits where the records were located, rather than having documents sent to Washington. Carter paid the bill for every expenditure made by the Army during the War. In 1946, Carter received the AICPA Gold Medal for Distinguished Service to the Profession for his “outstanding service to his country and the accounting profession.” Colonel Carter is best known for his contributions to the accounting profession in the 1930s, but Major General Carter should be equally well known for his contributions to his country in the 1940s. Even in death, Carter made a contribution to the profession. When his wife, the former Marjorie Sells, died, Carter’s estate provided funding to the American Accounting Association for the Arthur H. Carter Scholarships, which were awarded from the late 1970s through 2005. Born in 1884 in Hillsboro, Kansas, Carter died January 3, 1965.
David Francis Larcker is the James Irvin Miller Professor of Accounting, Emeritus, at Stanford Graduate School of Business, Faculty Director of the school’s Corporate Governance Research Initiative, and a Senior Faculty of the Arthur and Toni Rembe Rock Center for Corporate Governance. He received a Bachelor of Mechanical Engineering and a Master of Engineering Management from Missouri University of Science and Technology (Missouri S&T) in 1972 and 1974, respectively. He went on to complete a Ph.D. in Accounting at the University of Kansas in 1978. Upon graduation, he began his academic career as an Assistant Professor at the Kellogg School of Management, Northwestern University. At Kellogg, Larcker quickly rose to a full professorship in 1984, just six years since graduating from his doctoral studies. His tenure at Northwestern was followed by appointments to the Ernst & Young Professorship of Accounting at the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania, and, later, to his current position at Stanford University in 2005. Known as a pioneer in the empirical literature on incentive problems and compensation contracts, Larcker’s research interests are broad and span from topics in executive compensation, corporate governance, and managerial accounting to methodological issues in applied econometrics. These research interests have found an expression in over 70 peer-reviewed articles published in premier accounting, finance, economics journals, over 75 thought pieces for the Rock Center for Corporate Governance at Stanford, and three books. His contributions have been cited over 100,000 times and have become cornerstones of research in their respective areas. In addition to his prodigious research output, he has given generously of his time to the accounting discipline and its institution. He has co-authored over 40 manuscripts with doctoral students and young researchers—several of whom have become prominent academics themselves—and he has served on the American Accounting Association’s Doctoral Consortium for almost a decade. He has also served as the AAA’s Distinguished Visiting International Lecturer, a member on the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) committees considering executive stock options and valuation methods, and as an editorial board member of some of our most distinguished journals, such as Accounting, Organizations and Society, The Accounting Review, Journal of Accounting and Economics, Journal of Accounting Research, and Journal of Accounting and Public Policy.
Sybil Collins Mobley (1925-2015), the daughter of Melvin and Cora Collins, was born on October 14, 1925, in Shreveport, Louisiana. Both her mother and father were educators. Mobley graduated from Bishop College, Texas, with a BA in Sociology in 1945. She earned an MBA from the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania in 1961. Her graduate studies continued at the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign where she completed a Ph.D. in Accountancy in 1964. Under Robert K. Mautz’s supervision, she completed her doctoral studies in less than two years, a university record sustained to the present day. Mobley spent her entire professional career at Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University (FAMU), the nation’s third largest historically black university. She began her career at FAMU in 1945 and rose to professor and later department chair after completing her graduate degrees. In 1974, Mobley became the founding Dean of the School of Business and Industry, a position she retained until her retirement in 2003. As Dean, she was a visionary that transformed the lives of thousands of individuals, including students, faculty, and staff. She made accounting central to the school’s mission, implemented a now world-renowned professional development program in leadership, and raised millions for scholarships for promising but underserved students in financial need. In addition to her activities as Dean, Mobley served as a consultant to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the Comptroller General, and as a member of several corporate boards. She also served as an active member of the International Association of Black Business Educators, National Association of Black Accountants, and Alpha Kappa Alpha. She is the recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees from Hamilton College and the Universities of Pennsylvania, Princeton, and Washington in St. Louis. The building that hosts the business school she helped found now bears her name, and a million-dollar donation established the Mobley Hershey Endowed Chair in her honor. She married James Otis Mobley and had three children: James, Janet, and Melvin. Both she and Otis were pioneers in the Tallahassee Civil Rights movement. Mobley died at Tallahassee Memorial HealthCare in the early morning hours of September 29, 2015, after a brief illness. She was 89 years old.
Charles Howard Noski, born August 23, 1952, in Eureka, California, was elected Chairman of the Board of Directors of Wells Fargo & Company in March 2020. He is a retired vice chairman and chief financial officer of Bank of America Corporation. He was chief financial officer of Northrop Grumman Corporation from 2003 until 2005 and a member of Northrop Grumman’s board of directors. Noski was chief financial officer of AT&T Corporation from 1999 until 2002 and vice chairman of the board of directors during 2002. From 1990 until 1999, he served in senior leadership positions with Hughes Electronics Corporation, including chief financial officer, president and chief operating officer, and a member of the board of directors. Noski began his accounting career as a staff accountant at Haskins & Sells (now Deloitte) in 1973 and rose to partner with Deloitte & Touche, where he served some of the firm’s largest and most complex clients. Noski is lead independent director of Booking Holdings Inc., and a director and member of the finance and investment committee of Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company. He previously served as a director and chairman of the audit committee of Microsoft Corporation, Morgan Stanley, Avon Products, Inc., Booking Holdings Inc., and Wells Fargo, and as chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Financial Accounting Foundation (2016-2019), chairman of the Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council, and a member of the Standing Advisory Group of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board. Noski is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), Financial Executives International (FEI), and the Audit Committee Leadership Network-North America, and served as an inaugural member of the Ernst & Young Independent Audit Quality Committee (2019-2020). He was inducted into the inaugural class of the FEI Hall of Fame in 2006. Noski earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and a Master of Science in Accountancy from California State University, Northridge. A long-time supporter of accounting education, he received the school’s distinguished alumnus award in 2002, and an honorary doctorate in 2007. He and his wife Lisa have endowed the Noski Family scholarships for accounting students at Northridge. Noski’s impact includes his public service at the Financial Accounting Foundation and his deep and far-reaching experience across multiple facets of the accounting profession. From his role as Chairman of the Board of Wells Fargo, to serving as chief financial officer for some of the world’s preeminent organizations, to his early days as an auditor, he has led from the front on numerous accounting issues for nearly 50 years and served as a model and mentor to many.
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.