Recent research indicates that 77 percent of S&P 500 companies disclosed engagement with investors, with over 32 percent of respondents reporting director involvement. Why are investors engaging boards and what should board directors know, anticipate, and communicate through proxy statements? You’ll hear from experts from ISS, BlackRock, and Northern Trust – representing global institutions with trillions of dollars of shareholder assets – with insights on key issues for investors, investor engagements, and analytics on trends impacting corporate boards. This is a not-to-miss program to understand the evolving pace of change in the investor engagement/activism arena and hot topics for your board to consider. Panelists: Michelle Edkins, Managing Director, BlackRock, John Roe, Principal, ISS Analytics, and Mamadou Abou-Sarr, Director of Product Development and Sustainable Investing, Northern Trust.
Michelle Edkins, Managing Director, is the Global Head of BlackRock's Investment Stewardship team of over 30 specialists covering the Americas; Europe, the Middle East and Africa; and Asia-Pacific. Ms. Edkins is responsible for the team's engagement and proxy voting activities in relation to the companies in which BlackRock invests on behalf of clients. She also serves on the firm's Global Operating, Human Capital and Government Relations Steering Committees. She is an alumna of BlackRock's Women's Leadership Forum and its Enterprise Leadership Program.
Ms. Edkins is an active participant in the public corporate governance debate and regularly speaks and writes on the importance of good stewardship for company performance. She was named in the NACD (the U.S. National Association of Corporate Directors) Directorship 100 Governance Professionals list for the past six years. She is also a Fellow of the Aspen Institute's First Movers program and a former Chair of the Board of Governors of the International Corporate Governance Network. She currently serves on a number of industry initiatives to enhance governance and sustainable business practices including the Advisory Council of the International Integrated Reporting Council, the U.S. chapter of the 30% Club, a market initiative to increase the number of women on boards and in senior management, the International Institute for Sustainable Development, the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) Investor Advisory Group and the CECP's Strategic Investor Initiative.
John Roe is Head of ISS Analytics, a business line of Institutional Shareholder Services focused on developing data and analytics products used by financial market participants, globally. In this capacity, John also oversee the development of ISS’ quantitative methodologies covering compensation evaluation and governance scoring and coordinates the firm’s thought-leadership initiatives.
John frequently speaks at special events such as the New York Stock Exchange Governance Series, the Wall Street Journal Global Compliance Symposium, the Canadian Society of Corporate Secretaries, and the National Association of Stock Plan Professionals.
John has been widely quoted in the press on the topics of compensation, governance, and disclosure, including in the Wall Street Journal, Reuters, BusinessWeek, REIT magazine, and numerous local and regional publications.
Previously, John led Advisory & Client Service at ISS Corporate Solutions (ICS), a wholly owned subsidiary of Institutional Shareholder Services, where he grew and led a team of governance, executive compensation, and ESG experts.
Prior to ICS, John was Chief Operating Officer and Chief Compliance Officer of a registered institutional investor. John also served on the White House staff, was a consultant with McKinsey & Company, and served as a military officer.