Cynthia Cooper - Featured Keynote

Cynthia CooperTuesday, March 24 @ 12pm

Sponsor: College of Business, Missouri State University

Ms. Cooper is CEO of The CooperGroup, LLC, a management consulting firm that provides services in the areas of internal audit, ethics and compliance, fraud prevention and detection, board consultation and education and enterprise risk management.  Ms. Cooper has more than twenty years of diversified corporate and consulting experience serving clients that have included large and small-cap public corporations and private companies as well as federal and state government entities.  As Vice President and Chief Audit Executive for MCI she helped the company move forward and successfully emerge from bankruptcy after the WorldCom fraud—to date the largest corporate fraud in history—which she and her team identified and unraveled in 2002. In July 2004, Ms. Cooper left MCI to launch her own consulting firm.

Today Ms. Cooper is a consultant, internationally recognized speaker and the author of Extraordinary Circumstances (February 2008, John Wiley & Sons), a book that discusses her experiences as a corporate executive and lessons learned at WorldCom. Ms. Cooper presents to professionals and students across the globe to share the lessons she has learned and to emphasize the importance of strong ethical leadership. She has donated profits from her book to further ethics education for high school and college students. Ms. Cooper currently serves on advisory boards for Louisiana State University, Lehigh University and Mississippi State University.

Prior to joining MCI, Ms. Cooper worked in public accounting in Atlanta, Georgia, for Deloitte & Touche and PricewaterhouseCoopers, and she holds a number of professional designations including Certified Public Accountant in Georgia, Certified Fraud Examiner and Certified Information Systems Auditor. The CooperGroup not a CPA firm but a management consulting firm and does not provide attest services, audits, or other engagements in accordance with the AICPA's Statements on Auditing Standards. Ms. Cooper serves on the Board of Regents for the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.  She has previously served as a member of the Standing Advisory Group of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB).

Ms. Cooper has served on panels with notables such as Brian Williams, Anderson Cooper, Donna Brazile, and Grover Norquist; and has appeared on programs including Fox Business’ America’s Nightly Scoreboard, PBS’s Tavis Smiley, NBC’s The Today Show, ABC’s This Week with George Stephanopoulos, CSPAN’s BookTV, and CNBC’s The Big Idea with Donnie Deutsch and Squawk Box.

Ms. Cooper has served large cap public company clients such as Dell, PepsiCo, Raytheon and Walmart; international and public sector entities such as the United Nations, the FBI’s Office of Integrity and Compliance, the FBI’s Criminal Investigative Division, the U.S. Department of Interior, the U.S. Department of Labor, and the California State Auditors; and public accounting firms such as Deloitte and PricewaterhouseCoopers.

Ms. Cooper was named one of Time Magazine’s Persons of the Year for her role in uncovering the WorldCom fraud. She was the first woman inducted to the AICPA Hall of Fame and was featured as one of twenty-five influential working mothers in Working Mother. Ms. Cooper is also the recipient of the American Accounting Association’s Accounting Exemplar Award, which is awarded annually to an individual who has made notable contributions to professionalism and ethics in accounting practice or education. Along with Senator Sarbanes and Representative Oxley, Ms. Cooper received the Maria and Sidney E. Rolfe Award from the Women’s Economic Round Table for contributions to educating the public about economics, business and finance.