The financial planning community was recently stunned by the unexpected announcement that Alan Goldfarb, chairman of the Board of Directors for the CFP Board, along with two unnamed members of the CFP Board's Disciplinary and Ethics Commission (DEC), had resigned amidst allegations that they had violated CFP Board's Standards of Professional Conduct. Critics of the CFP Board were quick to step forward and use the announcement as a moment of weakness and an opportunity to bash the organization. Nonetheless, it's still notable in a sign of strength that the CFP Board does have an enforcement process, and isn't afraid to use it - even to the point of ousting its own board chair and some DEC members.
In the long run, though, whether this proves to be a sign of strength or weakness for the CFP Board depends upon the transparency it uses in resolving the matter. While light on the details right now - it is, after all, an ongoing investigation - the real question is how much the CFP Board ultimately discloses about what the allegations were, the process of the investigation, the outcomes of that process, and how the matter was adjudicated - along with whatever steps it intends to take to ensure the problems, whatever they were, don't happen again. We can't ask for or expect any answers yet, but we can ask for and expect a commitment, now, for transparency at the end of the process to maintain the integrity of the organization.