NMSUnews: The Cost of Crossing Ethical Lines


Published on Apr 17, 2012 by nmsunews.

Weston Smith, former CEO of HealthSouth, visits New Mexico State University students and faculty to discuss his role in HealthSouth’s massive accounting fraud.

Weston Smith (submitted photo)

Weston Smith (submitted photo)

April 11, 2012, was Weston Smith Ethics Day at the College of Business. Smith described the culture of the company and the mechanics of the fraud and how detection was avoided. He highlighted both financial and non-financial red flags of corporate misconduct. Most importantly, he challenged and motivated students “to simply do the right thing.”

Weston Smith speaks frequently on ethics and integrity within business. He is passionate about teaching others the fruits of living and working responsibly, and the consequences of unethical conduct.

His background is unusual.

He was once CFO of a Fortune 500 company, Healthsouth Corporation, which over a dozen years became a Wall Street darling as it grew from one location to over 2,000 in all 50 States. However, underneath the glimmering corporate office, the fleet of corporate jets, and “consistent” earnings reports, lay a multi-year multi-billion-dollar financial statement fraud. Smith voluntarily came forward and exposed the fraud to the government, and accepted responsibility for his own actions.

Weston Smith is a former CPA who is a graduate of the University of North Alabama. He is a regular contributor to researchers of corporate fraud and has been a guest on The Fox Business Channel with Neil Cavuto.

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