The IAF has announced that Victor Gandy, the Executive Secretary of the IAAC, will take over as the official Secretary of IAF, replacing Elva Nilsen. The move comes as the IAF prepares to merge with ILAC into a new single entity, GLOBAC. Gandy’s consulting company, Axis Mundi LLC, was announced as the new IAF Secretariat.

Victor Gandy

The IAAC (Inter-American Accreditation Cooperation) is the IAF regional body responsible for peer review activities of accredited bodies in the Americas. The appointment of an IAAC official to IAF secretary raises some minor conflict of interest considerations.

Despite claims in the IAF press release that Gandy’s position at the IAAC was a “past” role, he is still listed as the Executive Secretary for the IAF regional body IAAC in Mexico. Gandy was shown at an event in 2022 still in office at the IAAC, in a press release related to a change in the Chair position. His company Axis Mundi would have been bidding on the GLOBAC role at that time, creating a conflict of interest for IAF. Such conflicts may be why the IAF elected to keep the entire bidding process secret.

The deal was reportedly underway for about two years, and the Secretariat role was put out for private, confidential bidding. It is not known who competed against Gandy in the bidding.

The announcement is revealing more for what it does not say, rather than for what it does. There is no mention at all of current IAF Secretary Elva Nilsen, who has run the IAF from her home in Canada for decades. Nilsen has been notoriously secretive, refusing to have her photo taken at any event, and ordering the removal of all references to her name — as well as all other IAF staffers — from the official IAF website.

Nilsen’s private consulting company, ECN Consulting, drew an annual salary of about $300,000 from the IAF, per tax filings.

It is not known whether Nilsen retired or was fired.

Victor Gandy Background

Gandy previously accepted mail for the IAAC sent to Mexico, and listed his phone number as being from that country. Subsequent checks of public records show, however, that Gandy’s actual name is Daniel Victor Gandy V and he lives in Arlington VA. He formed Axis Mundi as his personal consulting company in 2018, and registered the company in North Carolina. In 2018, Gandy moved the company to Alexandria Virginia, and filed articles of domestication in that state. The Virginia filing lists an apartment within a highrise apartment building in Alexandria as its official place of business.

The rest of Gandy’s team are entirely from non-US countries, with most coming from Latin America. Johanna Acuña Loría will act as Arrangement Management Program Manager, and is from Costa Rica. Alongside her in that country is Mariluz Quirós López, who will act as IAF Program Manager. Both women held prior positions in the Costa Rican accreditation body, ECA.

Karla Sánchez, from Mexico, will take over as IAF Administration/Marketing Coordinator. Her only prior experience was with IAAC.

The rest of Gandy’s team largely comes from Canada: Krista Eager will act as IAF Program Coordinator, Rick Parsons as CFO, and Laurie Davis as IAF IT Support.

Other international agents for IAF are Nonhlanhla (Nyaki) Halimana from South Africa, who will act as IAF/ILAC Administration Program Manager, and Steve Keeling of Australia, who will take on the role of IAF Program Coordinator. Keeling previously worked with the Australian AB, JAS-ANZ.

It is expected that when IAF and ILAC finally merge into GLOBAC, the new company will be — or already is — registered in New Zealand. This means the IAF’s finances will no longer be visible to the US public, since it will not file US tax returns. Gandy’s tax information will remain private, so his salary will not be public information, unlike that of Nilsen.

For his part, Gandy has been a willing participant in shutting down valid complaints filed against IAF member accreditation bodies. After a representative of NQA threatened a client for hiring Oxebridge to assist in closing invalid AS9100 audit findings, the accreditation body in volved — ANAB — lied in its official response to protect NQA. The matter was escalated to the IAAC, and to Gandy personally, who then outsourced the investigation to other officials. The final IAAC ruling ignored the specific violations alleged in the Oxebridge complaint entirely, and instead absolved ANAB for matters not mentioned in the complaint. Gandy closed the complaint without further action, and ANAB never faced a penalty.

The final ruling means that IAF members and their certification bodies are now free to threaten any party they disagree with.

IAF Erosion of Trust

Under Nilsen, the IAF expanded its reach through its various global “Regional Accreditation Groups,” including IAAC. At the same time, Nilsen refused to follow published IAF procedures and the legally-binding IAF Bylaws to enforce ISO 17011 when the regional bodies refused to do so. Instead, during her tenure, the IAF largely converted the entire world’s accreditation scheme into a pay-to-play scheme, where certification bodies pay accreditation bodies, and the accreditation bodies then pay the IAF and its regional groups, in exchange for “protection” when complaints are filed or investigations are launched.

Nilsen had refused to enforce IAF rules governing its regional groups on APAC, the regional group operated out of Australia. That group, led by Graeme Drake, has opened the doors to IAF members to known certificate mills and other fraudsters, allowing them to operate shoulder-to-shoulder with legitimate ABs such as JAS-ANZ and ANAB. Because of its lax policies, APAC is absorbing much of the world’s accreditation body pool, as ABs switch to avoid proper oversight while retaining IAF membership.

The IAF also utilizes a rotating “Chair” position, which is granted to an international AB executive every few years. The current Chair, Emanuele Riva of Italy’s accreditation body Accredia, has openly violated international sanctions by refusing to stop offering accreditation in Russia instead, he has used his position in the IAF to eject competing ABs from that country, allowing Accredia to operate nearly without competition. Riva has consistently claimed that IAF procedures, and his interpretation of them, trump international law.

Nilsen refused to enforce the IAF procedures or international law on Riva, and he remains in power to date.

Previously, the IAF Chair was Xiao Jianhua from China, who used his IAF role to actively promote China’s controversial “Belt and Road” trade policy. Again, Nilsen did nothing to stop Xiao from politicizing the IAF and promoting anti-US policies.

It is not expected that Gandy will bring any improvements to the scheme, but that the merged GLOBAC organization will likely worsen the reputation of ISO certifications in the long run. Where ILAC held some reasonable controls over laboratory accreditations, the merger will strip that body of its ability to enforce accreditation rules, and hand the job to Gandy and his selected staffers.


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