Julia Irvine 3 Nov 2017 12:11pm

Wilson steps down as PCAOB director of international affairs

Bruce Wilson, who has led the US audit watchdog’s negotiations with non-US audit regulators around the world, has announced he is standing down

He has decided to retire after more than five years as the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board’s (PCAOB) director of international affairs, although he will stay on in an advisory capacity to ensure a smooth transition to his successor and to finalise negotiations that are near completion.

Wilson is an international trade law and policy expert who spent six years as international trade counsel for the US House of Representatives’ ways and means committee before moving to the Office of the US Trade Representative.

After serving 16 years there, he went to the World Trade Organisation in Geneva where he was director of legal affairs for eight years. He joined the PCAOB in 2012.

PCAOB chairman James Doty said Wilson had helped the PCAOB achieve vibrant cooperation among audit regulators through his "ability to simplify complex political and legal challenges, to gain the respect and trust of both colleagues and negotiating partners, and to design practical and effective solutions".

Wilson’s successor is to be George Botic, who joined the PCAOB in 2003, shortly after it was first set up.

He has held various roles in the division of registration and inspections and in 2009 was promoted to deputy director of the division. In 2014 he became special adviser to Doty and has regularly represented the PCAOB in external meetings since then, including those involving negotiations to gain access to PCAOB-registered audit firms based overseas.

Wilson says that Botic is a good choice. “George is deeply knowledgeable about the PCAOB’s inspections and other oversight activities and has been an able and indefatigable partner with the office of international affairs in building solid relationships with our counterparts around the world.”

Before joining the regulator, Botic was a senior manager in the Washington office of PwC.