Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Former SEC Chief Accountant Andrew Barr (1901-1995)

Academic journal article Journal of Accountancy

Former SEC Chief Accountant Andrew Barr (1901-1995)

Article excerpt

Andrew Barr died in his home town of Urbana, Illinois, on November 29, 1995. He was 94. From 1956 to 1972--a period of unprecedented economic expansion--Barr served as chief accountant of the Securities and Exchange Commission. No other chief accountant has held the post longer.

Barr's government service is almost as old as the SEC itself: In 1938, as an SEC research accountant, he investigated the McKesson & Robbins fraud. Before entering government service, he was a member of the accounting faculty at Yale University. He served as a vice-president of the American Accounting Association in 1956. He also was a member of the American Institute of CPAs council and a founder and early president of the Association of Government Accountants.

Throughout his career, Bart believed that corporate management had a right to prepare and a responsibility to fairly report corporate performance. He challenged reports by companies, such as the Atlantic Research Corporation in the 1960s, that departed materially from this concept. …

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