When most people think about charitable giving, direct financial contributions come to mind. While funding in the form of gifts of cash and/or stocks is of course beneficial to nonprofit organizations, there are other ways to become involved and show support for a good cause. Peter R. Culpepper, chief financial officer and chief operating officer at Provectus Pharmaceuticals in Knoxville, Tennessee, partnered with the Make-A-Wish Foundation in 2003 following his 5-year-old daughter’s diagnosis of and successful treatment for a brain tumor.
Through his book, Brownie the Lonely Dragon, Mr. Culpepper and his co-authors helped raise awareness of the life-altering work of Make-A-Wish. Brownie the Lonely Dragon offers a valuable lesson to all children about believing in themselves while accepting and respecting others’ differences. Other philanthropists can similarly make a difference by exploring alternative opportunities, such as volunteering or donating specific gifts, which directly provide critical needs and services as opposed to giving money toward their purchase.
Peter Culpepper, CFO of Provectus Pharmaceuticals, manages compliance and establishes internal controls, including adhering to SOX 404. He develops relationships with investors and evaluates management decisions and structures. Pete Culpepper offers tips on building a corporate culture of openness and honesty.
– Provide clear expectations for conduct and reporting. Depending on a person’s professional background, some practices are acceptable in one context or industry and not in another. Make sure new hires know what’s expected of them, from completing work projects to reporting to management.
– Build a system of checks and balances. Team members and executives should be in a position to monitor their colleagues and correct them, if faulty behavior arises. Self- and group-monitoring is more efficient than one person attempting to control all.
– Work hard at creating a positive culture. A corporate culture doesn’t spring up out of nowhere. It is a combination of hiring practices, colleague interaction, how success is perceived and recognized, and more. Celebrate hard-earned successes at your company and provide opportunities to recognize excellence and reward honest leaders.
About Peter Culpepper: The Chief Financial Officer of Tennessee-based Provectus Pharmaceuticals, Pete Culpepper oversees all of the company’s SOX Section 404 activities. Bringing nearly 20 years of experience to his role at Provectus, Culpepper proves skilled in such undertakings as capital fundraising, management, investor relations, and business planning.
Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (or SOX for short), a federal law enacted in 2002 in reaction to several national accounting scandals, requires all publicly-traded companies to implement internal controls and policies for financial reporting. The rule also mandates that such organizations document and test these procedures and checks to ensure that they provide effective transparency and oversight of fiduciary activity. For most companies, compliance mandates absorb considerable time and energy in such areas as information technology, finance and accounting, and law.
As such, many organizations dedicate significant resources to confirm that they meet the terms of SOX Section 404. In addition to evaluation and refinement of their internal procedures, SOX Section 404 mandates that companies employ the services of independent accountants to verify the soundness of their financial controls. The wide-ranging demands of the rule often necessitate new investments in technology as well as new hires to administer the various components of their financial reporting policies.
Companies which hire external organizations for managed services in information technology (IT) need to keep in mind that these parties must adhere to SOX Section 404 IT standards. An integrated audit reviews IT controls as they relate to financial reporting procedures. This means that in retaining a managed services provider, compliance officers should ascertain whether its engineers and technicians understand SOX mandates and can deliver documentation and endure testing according to regulatory demands.
By Peter Culpepper
Meeting regulatory requirements such as Section 404 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act (SOX) necessitates the application of comprehensive procedures and controls. The sheer mass of information that must be processed under SOX 404 compels technology, finance, legal, and executive teams to develop a unified approach to compliance. Moreover, a clear understanding of goals facilitates success in maintaining adequate reporting systems and driving improvements.
Companies in industries like manufacturing and pharmaceuticals usually maintain documentation and procedures for regulatory compliance activities not related to SOX. By leveraging documentation associated with all compliance and reporting requirements, companies eliminate duplication of efforts and position themselves more effectively to implement solutions that enhance all reporting endeavors. Zealous communication between participants promotes effective translation of terms and objectives, and such communication proves beneficial in keeping SOX initiatives on track. It also helps to prioritize crucial tasks rather than rushing to put a more far-reaching, but untested, proposal into practice immediately.
About Peter Culpepper: A seasoned finance professional with nearly 20 years of experience, Pete Culpepper serves as the Chief Financial Officer of Provectus Pharmaceuticals, a Tennessee-based company which develops treatments for cancer and dermatological diseases. Culpepper belongs to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and Financial Executives International.