Friday, March 26, 2010


Mecklenburg County will have a new director of Internal Audit
beginning next month. Joanne Prakapas has been hired by County Manager
Harry L. Jones, Sr. for the position. She will begin work on April 7.

She comes to Charlotte from Phoenix, Arizona, where she was chief
internal auditor of the Arizona Department of Revenue. She previously
served as senior internal auditor for the Automotive Club of Michigan
in Dearborn, and auditor/analyst for the Arizona Office of the Auditor
General, in Phoenix.

Prakapas holds a Master of Science in Accounting and Bachelor of
Business Administration in Finance from Eastern Michigan University.
She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA), Certified Internal Auditor
(CIA), Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) and is also Certified in
Financial Forensics (CFF).

Prakapas will be responsible for planning, organizing, directing and
controlling the internal audit and appraisal function for Mecklenburg
County. The Internal Audit Department performs operational, financial-
related and information systems audits designed to furnish the Board
of County Commissioners and management with independent assessments of
departmental operations and recommendations that strengthen the
County's risk management and fiscal control processes.

Mecklenburg County's Internal Audit department has a staff of five and
budget of more than $500,000. Although Jones is projecting
significant cuts elsewhere in the organization next fiscal year, he is
recommending that Internal Audit department's staffing be increased by
three positions. Prakapas will be responsible for establishing and
implementing this new staffing plan. Her experience includes creating
a new audit division in the Arizona Office of the Auditor General and
a new internal audit unit for the Arizona Department of Revenue.

"Ms. Prakapas has exceptional knowledge and experience to lead our
internal audit function and enhance its capacity and capabilities,"
said Jones.