Richard Caturano, of assurance, tax and consulting services firm McGladrey, part of RSM, has been elected as the new chairman of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), a one-year voluntary post.

Throughout his career, Caturano has specialised in serving middle market companies. He was a founding member of Vitale, Caturano and Company, which specialised in the high-tech, biotech, manufacturing and professional services sectors. By the time it merged with McGladrey in 2010, it had become New England’s largest full-service, regional accounting firm and was widely recognised for its enlightened employment practices.

In his acceptance speech, Caturano said one of his priorities as chairman is promoting broader diversity among CPAs, particularly at leadership level. He said: "We have to maximise our talent pool by making sure everyone in America – regardless of background, race, gender, religion or anything else – is aware of the rewards and possibilities of the accounting profession. In our complex, information-driven, 24/7 world, we must be sure to get the best and brightest, regardless of their backgrounds."

Caturano also said the accounting profession must continue to be nimble in response to globalisation, cyber-security concerns, the need to create a better financial reporting framework for private companies, and making the profession more attractive to the best and brightest of the new generation.

Caturano served as vice chairman of the AICPA for the past year, and was a member of its board from 2009 to 2011, and its governing council from 2006 to 2008. He was also president of the Massachusetts Society of Certified Public Accountants from 2005 to 2006.

William Balhoff, managing director and CEO for Postlethwaite & Netterville in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, was elected vice-chair.