Dennis Whalen is the former leader of the KPMG Board Leadership Center (BLC) until his retirement in March 2020 after a 38 year career with the Firm. The BLC supports directors in their board service roles through an array of events, peer exchanges, in-boardroom briefings, and thought leadership. In that role, he oversaw the Center’s various programs, including KPMG’s Audit Committee Institute, Board Peer Exchange, collaboration with the WomenCorporateDirectors Foundation and other board diversity initiatives.
Whalen is a frequent speaker and writer on board governance issues, including board composition & succession, diversity, culture, investor interests and the corporation’s role in society, as well as issues of special interest to audit committees, including risk, financial reporting and controls, and audit quality. He has been named as one of the most influential people in governance in America by NACD’s Directorship magazine. He is a Board Leadership fellow of the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD), and he has served on numerous NACD Blue Ribbon Commissions. Whalen served as an advisory board member of the Strategic Investor Initiative of the Committee Encouraging Corporate Philanthropy (CECP).
As a former senior audit partner, Whalen served several of KPMG’s top clients. He previously served on the firm’s US and Americas boards of directors, chaired the board’s Audit, Finance & Operations Committee and led audit practices in Houston and Kansas City. Whalen started his career in Stamford and had been seconded to the Hong Kong office where he led teams throughout the Asia Pacific region. Prior to becoming leader of the Center in 2015, Whalen served as partner in charge and executive director of KPMG’s Audit Committee Institute.