Internal Auditing: Departmental History
The Internal Auditing Department was created
at Auburn University on October 1, 1973, with the hiring of Donald
T. Royal as Director of Internal Auditing.
Royal served as the Director of Internal Auditing for twenty-eight years
until his retirement on September 30, 2001. Upon retirement, Royal was
named Executive Director Emeritus by the AU President and Board of Trustees.
Kevin Robinson was named Acting Executive Director of Internal Auditing
on October 1, 2001. Robinson served in this position for one year and
was named to the permanent position effective October 1, 2002.
One note regarding the history of Internal Auditing at Auburn University
is the fact that Donald Royal was not the first person to hold the title
Internal Auditor. Rhett Riley held the title of Internal Auditor upon
his hiring in 1963, but he functioned as an accountant/business officer
and did not perform internal auditing functions. Therefore, our history
as a department did not effectively begin until October 1973.
Departmental Reporting Structure
Initially, the Director of Internal Auditing reported to the Business
Manager/Treasurer. This reporting line changed in 1980. By action of
the Budget Committee of the Board of Trustees of Auburn University,
the Director of Internal Auditing began reporting to the President
with a dotted line to the Budget Committee on June 2, 1980.
In 1991, the reporting line was changed to the President and Executive
Committee of the Board of Trustees. Beginning in the late 1990's the
Executive Director reported to the Executive Vice President for administrative
purposes with a line continuing to the Executive Committee of the Board
Significant reporting changes occurred in 2004 with the creation of an
Audit Committee of the AU Board of Trustees. Board Member Virginia N.
Thompson was named first Audit Committee Chair. Other members of the
original audit committee were Charles D. McCrary and Earlon C. McWhorter.
The Executive Director currently reports administratively to the President’s
Office (reporting to the Senior Presidential Advisor - with Presidential
access as needed) with a functional line to the Audit Committee.
In 1980, the Internal Auditing Charter was approved by the Budget Committee
of the Board of Trustees. Among other things, the Charter set out the
independence of the Director of Internal Auditing and established his
authority to have full, free, and unrestricted access to all University
functions, records, property, and personnel.
The Internal Auditing Charter was updated in November 2004 to reflect
changes in Institute of Internal Auditing Standards (IIA). The update
was approved by the Audit Committee of the Board of Trustees then formally
approved by the entire board at their November 2004 meeting. The Charter
continues to provide free and unrestricted access to the records or personnel
relevant to an audit project.
Since our beginning, Internal Auditing has held internal audit responsibility
for all areas within the Auburn University system. These areas include
the Main Campus in Auburn, Auburn University at Montgomery, the Alabama
Cooperative Extension Service Main Office and all sixty-seven county
offices, the Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station and outlying stations.
Audit responsibility does not include related foundations which are
Focus & General
Internal Auditing has provided valuable services to Auburn University
since its inception in 1973. Many internal auditors have moved on to
key administrative and management roles within the AU system. Internal
Auditors have moved into leadership positions such as Controller & VP
for Business and Finance, Bursar, Director of Financial Reporting,
Vice Chancellor for Finance, and other various director/manager positions.
Internal Auditing as a profession has changed dramatically over the
past several years. There is a significant emphasis on risk assessment
and mitigation under current IIA Standards. Risk assessment and risk
inventories are a critical part of current operations to ensure audit
resources are being directed to the appropriate area. An annual risk
assessment serves as the basis of the annual audit plan.
To keep abreast of the changes in the profession the Internal Auditing
department actively participates in the Association of College and University
Auditors. Auburn University Internal Auditing was a charter member of
ACUA and is currently very active with the Executive Director serving
on the ACUA Board of Directors. Internal Auditors also hold memberships
in various other organizations such as the Institute of Internal Auditors,
the AICPA and Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.