Rachel Snell, MPA: Internal Audit Director (Chief Audit Executive)
With a Master's degree in Public Administration from Arizona State University, Rachel started her career in internal investigations (retail), moved into skip trace collections (banking), and transitioned into the public sector performing operational work for a US Congressman. With additional experience in city government in such areas as community outreach, emergency management, and law enforcement, Rachel garnered operational experience at both the local and Federal levels. Rachel started an audit career with the Texas State Auditor's Office. Having worked in audit for state and local government, where she gained additional subject matter expertise in purchasing, contracts, hotel occupancy tax, social services, health care, and information technology, she was able to obtain several audit related certifications (CIA, CFE, CRMA, CICA). Rachel is active in professional organizations, serves as a speaker at events, and publishes articles in audit-related publications.
The Internal Audit Department provides value-added audit, advisory and investigative services in an independent, ethical and collaborative environment to the District including the colleges, the Board of Trustees, students, vendors, members of the public and other stakeholders. The department contributes to the mission of the District and its colleges by ensuring efficiency and effectiveness in risk management, control and governance. As a result, reviewed operations are improved such that time and resources are streamlined and inefficiencies in processes are reduced or eliminated.
While the department offers various services to enhance service delivery and provide value to the District, the operations of the department is categorized into four groups.
Audit: An objective examination of evidence for the purpose of providing an independent assessment on governance, risk management, and control processes for the organization. Examples include financial, performance, compliance, system security, and due diligence engagements.
Consulting: These services are intended to add value and improve an organization's governance, risk management and control processes without the Internal Audit staff assuming management responsibility. Examples include counsel, advice, facilitation, and training.
Investigation: Independent evaluations of allegations related to fraud, waste, abuse, or other wrongdoing and improper activities that may involve misuse or misappropriation of District resources.
Follow-Up: A review of selected prior audits and/or specific recommendations made by internal and external auditors to determine the extent to which action plans as agreed by management were implemented.
Overall, various types of projects as described above may be performed by the audit team as part of its Annual Strategic Audit Plan.
Each project is comprised of the following three stages in common:
Planning: The work begins with planning how the project will be executed. The scope of the project is determined based on the available resources and the goal at hand. This is the learning part of the process, where the department familiarizes itself with the project, its overall operations and makes a determination what to focus on.
Fieldwork: During this phase, documents are extensively analyzed for accuracy and completeness; and processes are reviewed for identifying adequate levels of governance, risk management and controls.
Reporting: After the analyses is done, which are all documented in one or multiple work paper, all important findings are presented in a final draft to management and the client. These not only include issues identified but recommendations on how the organization or department can become more efficient and effective.