ACFE Honors Michael Woodford for Exposing Olympus Accounting Scandal


Whistleblower to receive 2012 Sentinel Award from world’s largest anti-fraud organization


AUSTIN, Texas, U.S.A. – For “choosing truth over self” in exposing the Olympus accounting scandal, Michael Woodford has been selected to receive the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners’ (ACFE) Cliff Robertson Sentinel Award for 2012. 


The ACFE will present the award to Woodford, former Olympus CEO and whistleblower of an alleged vast fraud at the corporation, at its 23rd Annual Fraud Conference & Exhibition, June 17-22, in Orlando, Fla. With more than 60,000 members, the ACFE is the world’s largest anti-fraud organization and premier provider of anti-fraud training and education. 


The ACFE bestows the Sentinel Award annually upon “a person who, without regard to personal or professional consequences, has publicly disclosed wrongdoing in business or government — the unselfish hero whom society has tarred as being a ‘whistleblower.’ These individuals are corporate sentinels, our frontline of defense against wrongdoing, and we created this award to recognize their sacrifices.” 


“It’s very encouraging to receive the Sentinel Award from the ACFE,” Woodford said. “It lifts my soul because it’s been a pretty miserable time.” 


Woodford, a 30-year veteran of Olympus Corporation, was the first Westerner to be named CEO of the Japan-based maker of cameras and medical equipment. He became a central figure in the Olympus scandal after he questioned sizable fees that Olympus had paid to hide losses from securities investments. At the end of September 2011, Woodford confronted Olympus’ Board of Directors on multiple occasions asking for answers to financial discrepancies and even commissioned a PricewaterhouseCoopers’ investigation. 


Woodford was abruptly fired Oct. 14, 2011, by the company’s executive board because of what the board cited as a “management culture clash.” Just one month later, Olympus officials publicly admitted to the U.S. FBI and UK Serious Fraud Office to having paid fraudulent advisory fees in a decade-long cover up valuing $1.7 billion. 


Along with receiving the award at the ACFE Annual Fraud Conference, Woodford will also present a keynote address, along with other keynote speakers including Senator Christopher J. Dodd, Pamela Meyer, CFE, Diane B. Henriques and Mark Whitacre (aka “The Informant”). More than 2,300 attendees will be on hand for training, best practices and networking at the largest gathering of anti-fraud professionals in the world. 


For more information about Michael Woodford and the Olympus scandal, visit 


For more information about the 23rd Annual ACFE Fraud Conference and Exhibition, visit  


About the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners (ACFE)The ACFE is the world’s largest anti-fraud organization and leading provider of anti-fraud training and education. Together with more than 60,000 members in more than 150 countries worldwide, the ACFE is reducing business fraud and inspiring public confidence in the integrity and objectivity within the profession. For more information about the ACFE, visit  


About the ACFE’s Cliff Robertson Sentinel Award 

The award is named after the Academy-Award-winning actor who, in the late 1970s, discovered a Hollywood producer was creating phony royalty checks, forging the signatures of those for whom the checks were intended and pocketing the cash. This powerful mogul threatened Robertson, telling him that if Robertson reported him, he’d never work in Hollywood again. Robertson went forward with his report and as a result he was blacklisted and wasn’t hired again in the film industry until years later. Today, whistleblowers like Cliff Robertson continue to face threats and retaliation from their superiors and colleagues, yet they choose to speak out regardless. For more information, visit 



Contact the ACFE
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