ACPAPP would not be what and where it is today had it not been through the visions and initiatives of some of the great names in the profession. Formally registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission on December 11, 1980, the Association of Certified Public Accountants in Public Practice is the outcome of two years of informal association of six reputable accounting firms. The head of these firms: Banaria, Banaria & Co., Carlos J. Valdes & Co., Jesus J. Zulueta & Co., Joaquin Cunanan & Co., Luis C. Diaz & Co., and Sycip, Gorres, Velayo & Co., drafted the first articles of incorporation and identified the fifteen incorporators. They were respected accounting professionals most of whom were senior partners from both big and small accounting firms during that time. The incorporators included Pascasio S. Banaria, Cesar F. Bocaling, Luis C. Diaz, Prisco N. Evangelista, Arsenio P. Maralit, Dominiciano C. David, Corazon S. Dela Paz, Enrique Ramos, Amparo F. Rodil, Ulpiano C. Sazon, Lucito L. Sioson, Benjamin T. Teodoro , Carlos J. Valdes, Jesus J. Valdes and Jesus Zulueta.
In its early years, ACPAPP was an organization of individual practitioners not of firms. It was created primarily to strengthen the position of the CPAs in public practice and to reserve the unity of the combined strength of all CPA professionals. Its activities were directed towards the fulfillment of four areas of service such as concern for members, professional development and increased capabilities for practice, high standards of professional services to clients and society, and harmony and cooperation.
The first president of the Association was Jesus J. Valdes, then the Managing Partner of Carlos J. Valdes & Co. but was later replaced by Luis C. Diaz when he was appointed associate commissioner of the SEC. It was during Mr. Diaz’s presidency when a formal link and continuing dialogue with the Bureau of Internal Revenue, the Securities and Exchange Commission and Central Bank of the Philippines was established on proposed regulations. The purpose of this dialogue is to promote wider interest and understanding to generate effective implementation and follow-up in the profession of the general public.
In 1985, Lucito L. Sioson, then Partner of Joaquin Cunanan & Co. and one of the incorporators, was concurrently the president of ACPAPP and chairman of the special committee which prepared the Audit Manual. It was a comprehensive reference on auditing practice. In his foreword, Dean Pascacio S. Banaria, who was then the chairman of the Board of Accountancy, wrote that the book was a response “to a pressing need for comprehensive guidelines for auditors and members of their staff in their tasks of examining clients’ financial statements, evaluating their system’s internal control and reporting on the results of examination.” The manual extensively used as guides and references for its preparation, professional pronouncements and technical bulletins of the Philippines Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Accounting Standards Council, International Federation of Accountants and American Institute of Certified Public Accountants.
The history of ACPAPP was laced with numerous milestones which significantly shaped its present status. In 1987, during Joaquin P. Tolentino’s time, the membership of individuals from big accounting firms was limited to 35. It was also during this period when the concept of integration of all CPAs under the umbrella of PICPA was explored.
As the years rolled on, ACPAPP continued to perform its mandate to promote the interest of public practitioners. The unwavering support of its early members and dedicated officers helped the Association weather the chills of integration which gripped the profession towards the end of the decade and early nineties.
At its twentieth year, ACPAPP has more than enough reasons to celebrate. It is growing and getting stronger more than ever. Realizing the importance of being part of a dedicated professional association, many smaller-sized accounting firms are joining ACPAPP and its members are becoming more actively involved in its activities.
After several year of hibernation, ACPAPP has emerged as a truly revitalized organization with distinct focus on its thrusts and objectives. A new generation of focus of leaders in the profession made the event a reality and with more intense vigor and cohesiveness, the Association is interestingly becoming a real mover in the industry.
New Structure for a Stronger ACPAPP
Under the stewardship of Benjamin R. Punongbayan, the Managing Partner of one of the largest accounting firms in the country, Punongbayan and Araullo, the Association was suddenly plunged into a flurry of structural reforms to make it more attuned to changing times. A year after, the by-laws was amended to pave the way to a stronger internal organization. It now opens its membership to individual members who have left the practice but would like to remain as members, thus, they are admitted as associate members.
Furthermore, to achieve a balance between large and small accounting firms, and to have representations from regions where there is a significant number of institutional members, the amended by-laws specified that the distribution of the board seats among these groups is to be determined every three years by the Board of Directors and approved by the institutional members. The classification of accounting firms as to large and small shall also be determined by the Board and approved by the institutional members. Starting 1999, the regional distribution of the fifteen board seats included 12 members from Metro Manila and one member each from Luzon, Visayas and Mindanao. Six members were from large accounting firms and nine came from small accounting firms.
As a result of this restructuring, two important functions were identified to demonstrate the strength of organization: first, to provide service to its members that will maintain and further enhance their professional development; and second, to take advocacy role in promoting and protecting the interest of its members, promote high professional standards and high ethical standards in the profession. Strategic plans including the setting up of a website and the establishment of a foundation were developed to ensure the attainment of the Association’s long-term objectives.
THE ACPAPP FOUNDATION
It was during the presidency of Nestorio C. Roraldo, Managing Partner of Roraldo, Gatdula, Rosales & Co., when the creation of the ACPAPP Foundation started to shape up. Finally, on March 16, 2001, the Board of Directors approved the incorporation of the ACPAPP Foundation, with the current and past presidents as incorporators. The Foundation’s primary purpose is to provide ACPAPP members with the necessary professional development programs and training facilities aimed at enhancing the competencies of CPAs in public practice. Its initial action is to acquire unit in Makati City that will house the Association’s office and training center.
Keeping Abreast with Technology
One of the most tangible and continuing services of the Association to its members is the launching of its official website, www.acpapp.com in the year 1998. The website publishes the whole texts of prevailing accounting and auditing standards, and current issued rules and regulations of the BIR, SEC, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas and other government agencies.
ACAPP National Conventions
The first national convention of the Association was held in Subic, Zambales on August 23-24, 2001. The affair was an outstanding success with renowned and respected names in the profession gracing the occasion. Over eighty individual members representing 37 accounting firms attended the technical discussions and the traditional fellowships and sports activities.
In 2002, the 2nd convention was held jointly with PICPA in Cagayan de Oro. More attended this momentous event.
The 3rd national convention was held in October, 2002 at Tagaytay Vista Lodge in Tagaytay City. Around 150 practitioners attended this successful event. Former BIR Commissioner Rene Bañez was the keynote speaker with Gov. Ayong Maliksi and Mayor Francis Tolentino as guest speaker.
The 4th National Convention was held successfully held at Clark, Pampanga on October 21-23, 2004. The convention was said to be the first among all ACPAPP conventions because of a very well staged set of Technical Sessions which was attended by 180 delegates.
The 5th Convention was held at Mt. Malarayat Golf & Country Club in Lipa City, Batangas on October 20-22, 2005. It was again a very successful and memorable event for all delegates who attended members and non-members.
The 6th National Convention was held successfully at Baguio Country Club Baguio City on September 28-30, 2006.
The 7th National Convention was held successfully at Bohol Tropics Resorts Graham Avenue, Tagbilaran City, Bohol on September 27-29, 2007.
The 8th National Convention was held at Grand Men Seng Hotel Magallanes-Anda Sts., Davao City on September 27-29, 2008 and attended of 301 delegate members and non-members.
The 9th National Convention was held at Legenda Hotel Waterfront Road, Subic Bay Freeport Zone, Zambales and was attended of 294 delegate members and non-members.
The 10th National Convention was held at Puerto Princesa City, Palawan on September 23-25, 2010.
Last year, the 11th National Convention was held successfully at Grand Caprice, Convention Center, Cagayan De Oro City on September 22-24, 2011 and with the most number of attendees with a total of 363 delegate members and non-members.
Regular Membership Meetings
Regular monthly membership meetings have always been the core of the Association’s year long activities. Prominent personalities in the profession, industry and government are invited to speak on current and relevant issues. Transparency in corporate governance and the impact of globalization are some of the more dominant themes that practitioners are concerned about recently.