Tag Archive: D100

Bestow the Glow—Nominate a Board Member You Admire for the 2011 NACD Director of the Year Awards

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As a philanthropist, mentor or family member, you probably support and affirm the efforts of many people every day—sustaining people in crisis, shelling out scholarship funds, listening to a brother in need, or applauding tiny grandchildren. Now, NACD is asking you to add a board member or two to your list and make someone’s day by nominating them for the NACD Director of the Year or B. Kenneth West Lifetime Achievement Award.

Don’t think these boardroom leaders won’t thank you. Every person on earth likes recognition for a job well done and appreciates an “attaboy/attagirl” when times are tough. When we are young, we typically receive praise from parents and teachers, and when we join the workforce exceptional performance can be rewarded by “hero-grams” from the boss and a welcome check at bonus time. Then we reach a stage in life when it seems that doling out the pats on the head, the slaps on the back and the big bucks falls to us. And, when you are the chairman of the board, everyone looks to you for validation, celebration and reward. Truly, it can be tough at the top.

The nature of effective board work means that most of it is unseen: the quiet word, the guiding thought and the patient phone calls seeking unity, collaboration and progress. The best in the boardroom spend hundreds of extra hours before board meetings, learning to know the company, the industry and the environment. They sublimate their egos, know when to speak up and when to stay silent, and match their judgment with maturity and integrity. Sure, many of them will have had high-profile and rewarding careers, but the last couple of years have been challenging for directors with high standards and a little love from you can’t hurt. Go on: Bestow the Glow.

To nominate a director you admire for one of the two NACD awards which will be presented at a Gala dinner at the Waldorf Astoria, New York, on Tuesday, November 8, 2011, please fill in the nomination form and supply at least three letters in support of your nominee. You can download the form and check all the details here. Nominations close on May 31 and an independent selection panel will announce the winners in early summer 2011.

The Director of the Year honorees and the D100 honorees will be celebrated at the NACD Directorship Forum, November 8-9, in New York.  Register here. You will have an opportunity to nominate directors, executives and governance experts for the D100 later this spring.

NACD Director of the Year Winners 2010

Curtis Crawford Richard Keyser Josh Bekenstein
B. Kenneth West Lifetime Achievement Award Honoree Public Company Director of the Year Award Honoree Nonprofit Director of the Year Honoree
Curtis J. Crawford, PhD,
Director of ON Semiconductor, E.I. Dupont DeNemours, and ITT Corporation
Richard Keyser,
Director Zebra Technologies, Chairman Emeritus of W.W. Grainger and Director, Principal Financial Group
Josh Bekenstein,
Managing Director Bain Capital, Co-Chair of Board of New Profit, Board of Dana Farber Cancer Institute, City Year, Horizons for Homeless Children and New Leaders for New Schools

Hu, Valukas, and Markopolos on Corporate Governance

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As the country emerges from the worst financial downturn since the Great Depression, directors, executives and other corporate governance experts gathered to honor the 100 most influential players in the boardroom and analyze recent mistakes and how they can be avoided at the NACD Directorship 100 Forum held Monday and Tuesday in New York City. The 100 honorees were commended at a dinner Monday night in a keynote address by Henry Hu, director of the SEC’s Division of Risk, Strategy and Financial Innovation.

Hu presented his “decoupling” concept, and explained how it relates to boards’ current challenges, especially as directors face the new Dodd-Frank Act. He pointed to the Act as the “most comprehensive change in generations… representing a new era for corporations and boards that introduces new challenges and new opportunities. It is important to get the balance between corporate governance and financial innovation right.”

The Forum’s second day featured Anton Valukas, court-appointed examiner in the Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy, explaining the actions that the Lehman board could have taken to better prepare for the company’s failure. While Valukas does not believe that failure was preventable, he did explain that, had the board asked more important questions, the fall would have had less severe of an impact on the U.S. economy.
“In this case,” said Valukas, “one word would have made the difference: transparency.” (read Valukas’ full report here)

Also featured was Harry Markopolos, author of No One Would Listen, which details his ten-year-long investigation of Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, the largest in history.  Markopolos took a firm tone with the directors of the room, imploring them to “use your experts and don’t take numbers from management, for the sake of your shareholders and stakeholders. That’s your job.”