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Corporate Governance - A Master Class 2015


Speaker(s): Alan L. Beller, Andrew J. Ceresney, Ann L. Yerger, Colleen P. Mahoney, Daniel J. Ryterband, Douglas Maine, Elaine H. Mandelbaum, Faiza J. Saeed, Gloria Santona, Hon. Harvey L. Pitt, Hon. J. Travis Laster, Jeanette M. Franzel, John W. White, Keir D. Gumbs, Keith F. Higgins, Krystal Berrini, Lawrence A. Hamermesh, Lewis J. Liman, Lillian Brown, Linda Chatman Thomsen, Linda E. Rappaport, Marty Dunn, Meredith B. Cross, Michael R. Young, Richard H. Walker, Stephen L. Brown, Thomas A. Cole
Recorded on: Feb. 10, 2015
PLI Program #: 59271

Krystal Gaboury Berrini is a Partner at PJT Camberview, based in San Francisco. Ms. Berrini joined PJT Partners through the acquisition of CamberView in 2018, where she was Head of the Advisory Business.

Before joining CamberView, Ms. Berrini led governance research, engagement and voting activities at Wellington Management Company. In this role, she was responsible for engaging with companies on governance, environmental and social issues, voting recommendations and developing voting policies across the firm’s global equity portfolio.

Prior to that role, Ms. Berrini was with Tapestry Networks, where she worked with Fortune 500 directors to develop governance best practices through network-based collaboration. Earlier in her career, she was a Principal on the governance team of State Street Global Advisors, where her responsibilities included global portfolio company engagements and voting responsibilities.

Ms. Berrini holds a bachelor’s degree in Finance from the Carroll School of Management at Boston College.


Alan L. Beller is a preeminent legal advisor and recognized thought leader regarding securities law, capital markets and corporate governance.  He is a Senior Counsel at Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP.

Alan currently serves in leadership oversight roles for organizations dedicated to long-term quality and stability of capital markets and the best interests of investors and issuers.

Alan is a member of the Board of Directors and the Audit and Risk Committees of The Travelers Companies, Inc., a Dow Jones company.

He is also a:

—Trustee of the IFRS Foundation, which is responsible for governance and oversight of the International Accounting Standards Board and International Financial Reporting Standards, the global system of accounting standards used in more than 130 countries.

—Member of the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board, which is developing industry-specific sustainability accounting standards that enable public companies to communicate financial material and decision-useful information to investors.

Alan was the Director of the Division of Corporation Finance of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and a Senior Counselor to the Commission from January 2002 until February 2006. During his four-year tenure, he led the Division in producing the most far- reaching corporate governance, financial disclosure and securities offering reforms in SEC history. Among his accomplishments were the implementation of the corporate provisions of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, the adoption of the first general corporate governance standards for listed companies and the successful completion of comprehensive securities offering reforms.

During his more than 30 years of experience in private practice with Cleary Gottlieb, Alan has represented market-leading US and non-US companies, independent directors and audit committees in complex transactions, including privatizations, demutualizations and other initial public offerings, and corporate governance, securities, corporate, and accounting and auditing matters. He has lectured and written extensively on these and other topics.


Andrew J. Ceresney is a partner in the New York office of Debevoise and Co-Chair of the Litigation Department.  Mr. Ceresney represents public companies, financial institutions, asset management firms, accounting firms, boards of directors, and individuals in federal and state government investigations and contested litigation in federal and state courts.

Prior to rejoining Debevoise in 2017, Mr. Ceresney served for nearly four years as the Director of Enforcement at the SEC under Chair Mary Jo White. In that role, he oversaw approximately 1,400 SEC personnel, supervising law enforcement efforts in 12 offices throughout the country, including matters related to financial reporting and accounting, asset management, insider trading, market structure, and the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA). Mr. Ceresney also served as a Deputy Chief Appellate Attorney in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York and handled numerous white collar criminal investigations, trials and appeals, including matters relating to securities fraud, mail fraud, money laundering, public corruption and obstruction of justice.


Ann Yerger is an advisor to Spencer Stuart’s North American Board Practice, a member of Grant Thornton’s Audit Quality Council and a director of Bed Bath & Beyond and Hershey Entertainment and Resorts.

Her deep background in corporate governance includes 18 months service as executive director of EY’s Center for Board Matters and 20 years at the Council of Institutional Investors in Washington, DC, including a 10-year leadership role as CII’s executive director. Prior to joining CII, Ann was deputy director of the Investor Responsibility Research Center’s corporate governance service, and her previous experience includes corporate banking at Wachovia.

Ann was a member of the Investor Advisory Group of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board and the Investor Advisory Committee of the US Securities and Exchange Commission. She also served on the Nasdaq Listing and Hearing Review Council, the CFA Institute Advisory Council, the Advisory Board of the Weinberg Center for Corporate Governance, and the US Treasury Department’s Advisory Committee on the Auditing Profession.

She is a CFA charter holder.


Daniel J. Ryterband is Chief Executive Officer of Frederic W. Cook & Co., where he consults to organizations on all aspects of executive compensation strategy and design, including tax, accounting, and securities law implications, as well as matters of corporate governance.  

Dan has 26 years of consulting experience and his clients include U.S. and overseas multinationals in a variety of industries, as well as smaller start-up organizations.  Representative clients include Automatic Data Processing, Ameriprise Financial, Best Buy, Campbell Soup, Citigroup, Clorox, Colgate-Palmolive, Danaher, GE, IBM, Macy’s, Merck, MillerCoors, Office Depot, PepsiCo, Sprint, Thomson Reuters, and Travelers.  Dan also works with smaller companies and private equity financed companies in a variety of industries.  Dan has extensive experience in working with Board Compensation Committees and generally attends or participates in over 100 Committee and/or Board meetings annually. 

He is a frequent writer and speaker on emerging issues in the field.  He has spoken at numerous conferences including those held by the Conference Board, the Harvard Business School, the National Association of Stock Plan Professionals, the American Society of Corporate Secretaries, the American Bar Association, the Practicing Law Institute, Northwestern University’s Kellogg School, WorldatWork, the Association of Executive Search Consultants, Financial Executives International, and other related trade and educational organizations.

Dan has been a guest speaker in the graduate programs at the Harvard Business School, the Leonard N. Stern School of Business at New York University, and Fordham Law School.  He is also a past member of the teaching faculty at WorldatWork, in which he taught courses on executive compensation to industry professionals.  Dan has also been a presenter at the Conference Board’s Directors’ Institute, which provides intensive interactive educational sessions for corporate directors on executive compensation and other governance issues, as well as other Conference Board educational programs. Most recently, Dan served as an advisor to the Conference Board’s Task Force on Executive Compensation.  He also served as a special advisor to the New York Stock Exchange in shaping the shareholder approval rules applicable to equity compensation plans.  He also served as a Commissioner on the National Association of Corporate Directors’ Blue Ribbon Panel on the role of the Compensation Committee.  

He is a graduate of Rutgers University (BS, environmental business economics) and New York University’s Leonard N. Stern School of Business (MBA, finance and management).   He is also a certified employee benefit specialist (CEBS) and a Certified Executive Compensation Professional (CECP).

Consulting Services

• Compensation Committee Advisor
• Total Compensation Reviews
• Strategic Incentives
• Specific Plan Reviews
• Competitive Comparisons
• Ownership Programs
• Director Compensation
• Executive Recruitment/Retention
• Severance Packages
• Equity Incentives
• Regulatory Services
• Private Companies/Pre-IPO
• Restructurings
• Shareowner Voting Issues
• Corporate Governance


Faiza J. Saeed is Cravath’s Presiding Partner.  She advises public companies, boards of directors and special committees in connection with M&A, corporate governance and crisis management, including consensual and hostile transactions, leveraged buyouts, strategic investments, takeover defense, proxy contests and hedge fund activism. 

Ms. Saeed was designated a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum (Davos) in 2006.  In 2007, The New York Times named her one of “Wall Street’s 100 Masters of the New Universe”.  She has been recognized as a “Dealmaker of the Year” three times by The American Lawyer magazine, in 2000, 2005 and 2011, and also named to its list of “45 Under 45” in 2003.  She is a recipient of the Outstanding Contribution to the Legal Profession Award from Chambers and Partners (2010).  In 2017, Crain’s New York Business named her one of the “50 Most Powerful Women in New York” and The Hollywood Reporter named her one of the “Top 100 Power Lawyers” in Hollywood.

Ms. Saeed has extensive deal experience across many industry sectors.  Notable recent matters include advising:

Time Warner in numerous matters, including its pending $109 billion acquisition by AT&T, its investment in Hulu, the unsolicited proposal from 21st Century Fox (which was withdrawn), its defense against Carl Icahn, its divestiture of Time Warner Telecom and its merger with AOL; Precision Castparts in its $37 billion acquisition by Berkshire Hathaway; The Strategic Review Committee of the Yahoo board in the $4.8 billion acquisition of Yahoo’s operating business by Verizon; InterMune in its $8.9 billion acquisition by Roche; and DreamWorks Animation in its $4.1 billion acquisition by Comcast, its acquisition of Classic Media, the formation of Oriental DreamWorks with China Media Capital and Shanghai Media, and its spin-off IPO from DreamWorks.

Ms. Saeed received a B.A. in Economics and Molecular Biology with Highest Distinction from the University of California at Berkeley in 1987 and a J.D. magna cum laude from Harvard Law School in 1991.  She joined Cravath in 1991 and was elected a partner in 1998.


Gloria Santona is the chief legal officer of McDonald’s Corporation, the world’s leading global foodservice retailer with more than 35,000 restaurants in 120 countries.  In this role, she leads McDonald’s worldwide legal, compliance, regulatory and corporate governance functions.  As part of McDonald’s senior leadership team, Ms. Santona is also actively involved in the company’s strategic direction and growth.

Ms. Santona received a Bachelor of Science degree from Michigan State University and a Juris Doctorate, cum laude, from the University of Michigan Law School.  She joined McDonald’s as an attorney shortly after her graduation from law school and subsequently held a number of management positions in the legal department.  She became the company’s corporate secretary in 1996 and its U.S. general counsel in 1999, and has served as corporate general counsel since 2001.

She is a member of the Board of Directors of Aon PLC, serving on its Audit and Governance Committees and is Chairman of its Compliance Committee.  In addition, Ms. Santona serves on the Board of the Constitutional Rights Foundation of Chicago.  She is a trustee of Rush University Medical Center and is Vice Chairman of its Audit Committee.  Ms. Santona is also a member of the Advisory Board of Corporate Pro Bono.  In the recent past, Ms. Santona served on Legal Services Corporation’s Pro Bono Task Force and was a member of the American Bar Association’s Commission on Women in the Profession.  She is currently a member of the Association of General Counsel, the Association of Corporate Counsel and the Leadership Council on Legal Diversity.

Ms. Santona has received numerous awards, including the Women with Vision Award from the Women’s Bar Association of Illinois, the Excellence in Corporate Practice Award from the Association of Corporate Counsel, the Women of Achievement Award from the Anti-Defamation League, the National Hispanic Woman of the Year Award from the Mexican American Opportunity Foundation, the Award for Outstanding Career Achievement from the Corporate Counsel Women of Color, the Founders’ Award from the Chicago Bar Association Alliance for Women, the Midwest Light of Human Rights Award from the National Immigrant Justice Center, the Mary V. Orozco Abriendo Caminos Award from the Latina Lawyers Bar Association, the Lucero Award from Latino Justice PRLDEF, the Sandra Day O’Connor Excellence Award from Direct Women and in 2014 was named an “Outstanding General Counsel” by the National Law Journal. In addition, Ms. Santona has been recognized as one of America’s Top General Counsel by Corporate Board Member magazine.


Jeanette M. Franzel served as Board Member of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB) from 2012--2018.  PCAOB’s mission is to oversee the audits of public companies and brokers and dealers to protect investors and further the public interest.  As Board Member, Ms. Franzel provided strategic direction and review for all of PCAOB’s programs, including registration and inspections of CPA firms, enforcement, standard-setting, and research and analysis.

Ms. Franzel brought extensive audit experience to the PCAOB after a distinguished career at the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO).  She ended her tenure as Managing Director, overseeing all aspects of GAO’s financial audits of the U.S. federal government. From 2008 through 2011, Ms. Franzel’s team provided oversight of the U.S. government’s efforts to stabilize the financial markets and promote economic recovery. 

Ms. Franzel has testified before congressional committees numerous times on issues involving accountability, governance, and internal controls.  

For four years Ms. Franzel was named as one of the “Top 100 Most Influential People” by Accounting Today. She was also the recipient of GAO's Distinguished Service Award, the AICPA's Outstanding CPA in Government Award, and the Association of Government Accountants’ International Achievement Award.

Ms. Franzel holds the following professional certifications: CPA, CIA, CMA and CGFM.


Keir Gumbs is Associate General Counsel, Global Corporate, M&A and Securities, and Deputy Corporate Secretary at Uber Technologies, Inc.  Prior to joining Uber, he was a partner in the corporate and securities practice at Covington & Burling LLP. Keir started his career at the SEC, where he served for six years - first as a staff attorney, later as a Special Counsel in the Office of Chief Counsel in the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance and finally as counsel to SEC Commissioner Roel Campos. 

Keir is recognized as a leading authority on securities regulation and corporate governance who represents a cross-section of constituencies in securities and governance matters, including companies ranging in size from Fortune 50 companies to venture-backed firms, as well as public pension funds, hedge funds, faith-based investors and trade associations. 

Honors and Rankings

  • Most Influential Black Lawyers, Savoy Magazine (2015)
  • Who’s Who Legal, Corporate, M&A and Governance (2015)
  • "D.C. Rising Star”, National Law Journal (2014)
  • DC Super Lawyers, Securities & Corporate Finance (2014-2015)
  • "Trailblazers Under 40", National Bar Association (2014)
  • America's Leading Business Lawyers, Securities: Regulation: Advisory (2012-2015), Chambers USA
  • “2011 Rising Star of Corporate Governance”, Millstein Center for Corporate Governance and Performance
  • Selected as one of the "People to Watch" in the National Association of Corporate Directors 2011 and 2012 “Directorship 100”


Keith Higgins is a member of Ropes & Gray’s corporate department and chair of the securities & governance practice.

Keith rejoined the firm in 2017, after having served as Director of Corporation Finance at the U. S. Securities & Exchange Commission since 2013. While in that role, Keith led the Division’s implementation of significant rulemaking under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act (JOBS Act), and Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act (FAST Act). He also led the Division’s Disclosure Effectiveness project and oversaw the issuance of significant interpretive guidance to companies and investors under the federal securities laws.

Prior to serving at the SEC, Keith had practiced at Ropes & Gray for more than 30 years, counseling public companies in securities offerings, mergers and acquisitions, compliance and corporate governance. Keith advises companies, their boards, and investors on matters with the SEC, including disclosure and financial statements, no-action letters, as well as SEC enforcement actions and related internal investigations.

While in private practice, Keith was recognized by Chambers, Best Lawyers, and other publications as a leading corporate and M&A lawyer in Massachusetts and nationwide.


Lillian Brown is a partner in the Transactional and Securities Departments and a member of the Corporate Practice Group in WilmerHale's Washington, DC office. Ms. Brown joined the firm in 2013, after having worked at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the Division of Corporation Finance since 1999. In her time at the SEC, among other roles, Ms. Brown served as Senior Special Counsel to the Director of the Division of Corporation Finance, working directly with three different Directors, and Special Counsel in the Office of Mergers and Acquisitions. Ms. Brown advises clients, including public companies and their boards, on federal securities law compliance and corporate governance matters. She has extensive experience in SEC reporting and disclosure requirements, shareholder proposal and proxy matters, the federal securities laws relevant to control-related transactions, proxy access and shareholder activism and engagement. Ms. Brown works with a diverse range of companies, from Fortune 500 to private companies, spanning multiple industries including financial services, technology, entertainment, consumer products, security, biotechnology and retail.

Professional Activities

Ms. Brown serves as Chair of the American Bar Association's Federal Regulation of Securities Committee Subcommittee on Proxy Statements and Business Combinations. She is also a member of the NASDAQ Hearings Panel and the Society of Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals, and is an Advisory Board member for the Securities Regulation Institute. Ms. Brown previously served as an elected member on the DC Bar's Corporation, Finance and Securities Law Steering Committee from 2014–2017.

Ms. Brown is a frequent speaker and author on corporate governance and SEC reporting and disclosure-related topics.

Community Involvement

Ms. Brown is Chair of the Capitol Hill Day School Board of Trustees.


Martin Dunn is senior of counsel based in Morrison & Foerster’s Washington, D.C. office. Prior to his career in private law, Mr. Dunn spent 20 years at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, having served as Chief Counsel, Deputy Director and Acting Director of the SEC’s Division of Corporation Finance, as a highly respected counselor to public companies. Mr. Dunn “is an immensely respected regulatory expert… He provides high-end securities counseling on regulatory compliance and transactional matters.” as noted in Chambers USA.

Fortune 500 clients turn to Mr. Dunn for his skillful counsel on critical issues they face. He offers a unique insider's perspective and clients admire his ability to apply practical guidance to situations that they face every day. He provides guidance on corporate governance and securities laws to newly formed publicly traded companies as well as to established ones. Mr. Dunn counsels companies through the public offering process, including compliance with the SEC requirements and responses to SEC comments.

In his role with the SEC, Mr. Dunn supervised the Corporation Finance Division’s Offices of Chief Counsel, Chief Accountant, Mergers and Acquisitions, International Corporate Finance, Rulemaking, Small Business and Enforcement Liaison. He oversaw many of the SEC’s most significant initiatives on disclosure, governance and capital-raising, including reforming the securities offering process, updating Rule 144, implementing the Sarbanes-Oxley Act, adopting the plain English requirements for prospectuses, implementing electronic proxy delivery, and easing exempt and registered capital formation for small businesses.

Mr. Dunn is top ranked by Chambers USA in the area of Securities Regulation: Advisory, noting that he is a “‘preeminent securities lawyer’ and a ‘true expert’ in the field when it comes to advising on SEC regulation and corporate governance issues” (Chambers USA 2016). He has also been named a recommended lawyer by Legal 500 US for Capital Markets in Debt Offerings, Equity Offerings and High-Yield Offerings and is recognized by Who’s Who Legal: M&A and Governance 2019 as a Corporate Governance Lawyer. During his career at the SEC, he was the recipient of numerous awards, such as the SEC Capital Markets Award, SEC Regulatory Award, SEC Law and Policy Award, SEC Chairman’s Award for Excellence, and the Federal Bar Association’s Philip A. Loomis, Jr. Award.

Mr. Dunn is frequently sought after to speak, write and comment on securities law topics. He is co-editor of the widely read newsletter, The Corporate Counsel a premier publication in the field. He is on the Executive Committee of the Northwestern University School of Law’s Securities Regulation Institute, a past Chair of the Northwestern University School of Law’s Ray Garrett Jr. Corporate and Securities Law Institute, and the University of Texas School of Law’s Conference on Securities Regulation and Corporate Law, and has been on the faculty of the ALI CLE’s Regulation D and Private Placements Conference for more than 20 years. Mr. Dunn also speaks frequently as a member of the faculty of the Practising Law Institute.

Mr. Dunn served as Co-Chair of the Nasdaq Listing and Hearing Review Council and he has been an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center and the University of Maryland School of Law.


Meredith Cross is a partner in the Transactional and Securities Departments, and a member of the Corporate Practice and Strategic Response Group in the Washington, D.C. office of Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr LLP.  Ms. Cross advises public companies and their boards on disclosure and other corporate finance securities law and corporate governance matters, including SEC enforcement matters involving corporate finance issues.  Ms. Cross rejoined the firm in 2013, after having served as Director of the Division of Corporation Finance of the SEC since 2009.

While serving as the Director of the Division of Corporation Finance of the SEC, Ms. Cross led the Division's efforts to implement both the Dodd-Frank Act and the Jumpstart Our Business Startups (JOBS) Act. Under her leadership, the Division recommended close to 60 rulemaking releases to the Commission.   Ms. Cross testified before Congress numerous times on a broad range of issues including corporate governance, capital formation, risk retention in asset-backed securities offerings, executive compensation oversight, and agency management and budget.
 
Before first joining WilmerHale in 1998, Ms. Cross served in a variety of positions in the Division of Corporation Finance at the SEC from 1990 to 1998, including Deputy Director, Associate Director (International and Small Business) and Chief Counsel.  Prior to first joining the SEC staff, she was an associate and counsel at King & Spalding in Atlanta from 1983-1990.  She clerked for Judge Albert J. Henderson of the US Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit (1982-1983). 

Ms. Cross currently serves as Chair of the Securities Regulation Institute and as Co-Chair of the Practicing Law Institute’s Annual Institute on Securities Regulation.  She is a frequent speaker at securities and corporate governance law conferences.  She is a member of the Securities Institute Advisory Committee, a Fellow in the American College of Governance Counsel, and previously served as a member of the ABA Corporate Laws Committee.  She is a member of the Board of Governors of the Wilmer Eye Institute at Johns Hopkins. 

Education

  • JD, Vanderbilt University School of Law, 1982, Order of the Coif, Vanderbilt Law Review
  • BA, cum laude, Duke University, 1979

Honors & Awards

  • Recognized for her exceptional securities practice in the 2006-2009 and 2014-2018 editions of Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business
  • Selected by peers for inclusion in the 2005-2019 editions of Best Lawyers in America for securities and capital markets law. Named by Best Lawyers as Washington DC Securities/Capital Markets "Lawyer of the Year" in 2017. 
  • Recipient of the 2014 Linda Quinn Lifetime Achievement Award by TheCorporateCounsel.net
  • Named to the NACD Directorship 100, A Who's Who of the American Corporate Governance Community, in 2010
  • Recognized as a Dealmaker of the Year by The American Lawyer in 2003


Ms. Thomsen, who was the first woman to serve as the Director of the Division of Enforcement at the Securities and Exchange Commission, is a litigator practicing in Davis Polk’s Washington DC office. Her practice concentrates in matters related to the enforcement of the federal securities laws. She has represented clients in SEC enforcement investigations and inquiries, in enforcement matters before other agencies, including the Department of Justice (various U.S. Attorneys Offices) and the Commodities Futures Trading Commission, in investigations and inquiries from self-regulatory agencies, including FINRA, and in internal investigations. These matters, which are typically non-public, have covered a broad range of securities related subject matters, including insider trading, foreign corrupt practices, financial reporting, manipulation and regulatory compliance. Her clients have included major financial institutions, regulated entities, public companies and senior executives.

Ms. Thomsen returned to Davis Polk in 2009 after 14 years of public service at the SEC. While there she held a variety of positions and ultimately served as the Director of Enforcement from 2005 through February 2009. During her tenure as the Director of Enforcement, she led the Enron investigation, the auction rate securities settlements, the stock options back dating cases and the expansion of the enforcement of the Foreign Corrupt Practice Act.

She is a graduate of Smith College (A.B. ’76, Government (High Honors)) and Harvard Law School (J.D. ’79).


Professor Hamermesh is a graduate of Haverford College (1973) and Yale Law School (1976). He practiced law with Morris, Nichols, Arsht & Tunnell, in Wilmington, Delaware from 1976 to 1994.

Prof. Hamermesh is a member and former chair of the Council of the Corporation Law Section of the Delaware State Bar Association (responsible for the annual review and modernization of the Delaware General Corporation Law). From January 2010 to June 2011, he served as senior special counsel in the Office of Chief Counsel of the Division of Corporation Finance of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission in Washington, D.C. (advising the Staff of the Commission on matters of state corporate law).

Prof. Hamermesh is the Reporter for the Corporate Laws Committee of the American Bar Association Business Law Section (responsible for the drafting and revision of the Model Business Corporation Act), and from 2001 to 2007 was an elected member of the Committee.  In 2002 and 2003 he also served as Reporter for the American Bar Association’s Task Force on Corporate Responsibility.

Recent publications include: Finding the Right Balance in Appraisal Litigation: Deal Price, Deal Process, and Synergies, 73 Bus. Law. 961 (Fall 2018) (with Michael Wachter); The Importance of Being Dismissive: The Efficiency Role of Pleading Stage Evaluation of Shareholder Litigation, 42 J. Corp. L. 597 (2017) (with Michael Wachter); A Most Adequate Response to Excessive Shareholder Litigation, 45 Hofstra L. Rev. 147 (2016); Director Nominations, 39 Del. J. Corp. L. 117 (2014); and Loyalty’s Core Demand: The Defining Role of Good Faith in Corporation Law, 98 Geo. L. J. 629 (2010) (with Leo E. Strine, Jr., R. Franklin Balotti, and Jeffrey M. Gorris).


Richard H. Walker is a member of King & Spalding, specializing in crisis management, cross-border government investigations and complex financial litigation, litigation assessment, corporate governance and compliance issues.

Mr. Walker retired from Deutsche Bank in 2016 after over 14 years, during which time he served in the roles of Vice Chairman, General Counsel and a member of the Group Executive Committee at different times.

Prior to joining Deutsche Bank, Mr. Walker served as the Director of the Division of Enforcement of the United States Securities and Exchange Commission from April 1998 to September 2001. For over two years prior to his appointment to that position, Mr. Walker served as the Commission’s General Counsel. He is the only person in the agency’s history to have served in both of these senior roles. Prior to his appointment as General Counsel, Mr. Walker was the Regional Director of the Commission’s Northeast Regional Office from 1991 through 1995.

Mr. Walker was awarded the Presidential Rank Distinguished Service Award in 1997 -- the highest federal award for government service. He also received the Commission’s Distinguished Service Award in 2000 and the Chairman’s Award for Excellence under both Chairman Levitt in 2000 and Chairman Breeden in 1992. In 1997, he was awarded the Commission’s Law and Policy Award in recognition of his participation in the government’s victory in U.S. v. O’Hagan, in which the United States Supreme Court upheld the misappropriation theory of insider trading.

Prior to joining the Commission, Mr. Walker spent 15 years in the New York office of Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft, where he was a litigation partner specializing in corporate, securities, and commercial litigation. From 1975 to 1976, Mr. Walker served as law clerk to the Honorable Collins J. Seitz, former Chief Judge of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. Mr. Walker is a 1972 Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Trinity College. In 1975, he was awarded his J.D. degree, cum laude, by Temple Law School, where he served as Editor-in-Chief of the Temple Law Quarterly.

Mr. Walker is a Trustee Emeritus of The American Folk Art Museum, former Co-Chair of The American Friends of Bucerius and a member of the Board of Directors of Pro Bono Partnership. He previously was a member of the Board of Directors of MBIA, Inc. (2006-2008) and served on the NYSE Legal Advisory Committee (2001-2005). He is also a member of Temple University Beasley School of Law Board of Visitors and served as a member of Trinity College Board of Fellows.

Mr. Walker is a frequent lecturer on banking, securities and corporate governance topics and has been an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania Law School where he co-taught a course in crisis management in the 2017 and 2018 Fall semesters.


Tom Cole is a partner in Sidley’s Chicago office. He joined the firm upon graduation from The University of Chicago Law School in 1975 and became a partner in 1981. For 15 years ended in April 2013, he served as chair of the firm’s Executive Committee, the committee that exercises general authority over the affairs of the firm. In April 2014, he stepped down as a member of the Executive Committee (on which he had served since 1987) and as a member of the firm's Management Committee (on which he had served since 1988).  Throughout his tenure in firm leadership (and afterward), he has maintained a robust practice on behalf of clients.

Mr. Cole focuses his practice on public company mergers and acquisitions and corporate governance. Mr. Cole is consistently recognized by Chambers USA and Chambers Global, including in their most recent editions. In 2001, Mr. Cole was recognized by Chambers Global as one of the 26 U.S. lawyers included in its list of the “Global 100 Lawyers”—“lawyers who stand out from their colleagues and are recognized internationally.” He was designated an M&A “Dealmaker of the Year” for 2007 by The American Lawyer. He was selected for BTI Consulting’s “Client Service All-Star” team in 2008, 2011 and 2014. In 2010 and 2013, he was named to “The Directorship 100,” the NACD’s list of “the most influential people in the boardroom community.”

Corporate governance assignments have included advising public company boards and their standing and special committees on a variety of subjects, including shareholder activism and proxy contests. For the five years ended 1998 and beginning again in 2013, he has taught the seminar on corporate governance at The University of Chicago Law School. Mr. Cole taught the same seminar at Harvard Law School during the Spring Semester of 2015.

He has been involved in approximately 60 announced public company mergers, spin-offs and takeover defenses.

Mr. Cole has been active in many civic, charitable and professional organizations.  He is currently a member of the Board of Trustees of The University of Chicago.  He served as Chairman of the Boards of Northwestern Memorial Healthcare and Hospital.  He is a former co-chair of the Tulane Corporate Law Institute and former chair of Northwestern’s Garrett Corporate and Securities Law Institute.


Colleen P. Mahoney, a partner in Skadden's Washington, D.C. office, heads the firm's Securities Enforcement and Compliance practice, and regularly represents financial services firms, corporations, their boards, board committees, officers, directors and employees in Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and other law enforcement investigations.

Ms. Mahoney assists management and boards of directors performing internal inves­tigations, often advising clients on preventive and remedial measures before and after securities-related issues arise.

Ms. Mahoney has been the lead attorney representing many of the company boards and individuals embroiled in signature SEC investigations. Her clients have included many well-known U.S. and foreign companies. As is frequently the case with SEC enforcement matters, the biggest victories are the ones that never become public – the government investigations and inquiries that are put to rest before charges are filed or an indictment is issued, or even before a public disclosure of the government interest. Ms. Mahoney has succeeded in bringing a number of matters to a close in those circumstances.

Prior to joining Skadden, Ms. Mahoney spent 15 years in increasingly senior positions with the SEC, serving as acting general counsel of the agency and as deputy director of the division of enforcement. During her tenure at the SEC, Ms. Mahoney helped manage a civil law enforcement program that addressed a wide range of issues, including financial fraud and disclosure, asset management issues, derivatives and insider trading.

Ms. Mahoney frequently lectures on securities regulatory and enforcement issues at seminars and conferences in the United States and abroad.

Ms. Mahoney has been selected for inclusion in Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, The International Who's Who of Corporate Governance Lawyers, Lawdragon 500 Leading Lawyers in America and The Best Lawyers in America. Since 2012, she has been recognized as one of Benchmark Litigation's "Top 250 Women in Litigation" and she also was named to the shortlist of the nation's top women regula­tory lawyers by Chambers USA (2012). Additionally, Ms. Mahoney was included in Washingtonian Magazine's 2013 "Best Lawyers" list.


Elaine H. Mandelbaum was most recently General Counsel of Litigation and Regulatory Investigations of Citigroup’s Institutional Clients Group (ICG). She and her group were responsible for all litigation, arbitrations, internal investigations and regulatory inquiries and related investigations, sweeps and enforcement proceedings for Citigroup’s institutional businesses, including corporate and investment banking, sales and trading, capital markets origination, securities services, trade and treasury services and private banking.  Elaine also was a member of the Global ICG Legal Management Committee. Prior to starting at Citigroup in 1997, Ms. Mandelbaum was a litigation attorney at the New York office of Jones, Day, Reavis & Pogue, and previously at Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison.

Elaine is the current President of the SIFMA Compliance & Legal Society, and has served on the SIFMA C&L’s Executive Committee for over a decade. Elaine was previously Vice Chair of the FINRA National Adjudicatory Council, the appellate body for decisions rendered in FINRA disciplinary and membership proceedings. Elaine serves on the Board of Directors of the Legal Action Center and of the National Council of Jewish Women, and was the recipient of the 2015 “Woman Who Dared” Award from the NCJW.

Elaine is a frequent speaker at PLI, SIFMA and other industry conferences on topics relating to complex securities litigation, corporate governance, internal and regulatory investigations and issues relating to women in the securities industry. She is an honors graduate of Yale College and of Harvard Law School.


Lewis Liman’s practice focuses on complex commercial litigation, securities class action lawsuits, and white-collar defense matters and investigations.

Among other matters, Mr. Liman has represented a large number of clients in federal securities class action lawsuits, including sanofi-aventis, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, Bank of New York Mellon Corporation, IMAX, Bear Stearns, and Pall Corporation and underwriters in connection with securities offerings of other public companies. He has also represented boards of directors in shareholder derivative litigation and securities litigation, including the boards of Dow Chemical and CA , Inc. Mr. Liman has also represented numerous companies and in governmental and internal investigations. He has represented individuals in securities litigation and governmental matters or investigations, including those involving Baker-Hughes Corporation, Cardinal Health, JP Morgan Chase, Alcoa, ImClone, Safety-Kleen, Tyco, CMS Energy, Lehman Brothers, United Rentals and UBS.

In 2013, Mr. Liman successfully argued Gabelli v. SEC in the United States Supreme Court, establishing that the general federal statute of limitations applicable to governmental civil penalty claims did not incorporate a discovery rule. He has also successfully argued cases in the U.S. Courts of Appeal for the Second, Federal and the Ninth Circuits, and in the courts of New York State, and has represented amici in numerous cases on appeal.

He has been recognized as a top litigator by Chambers USA, Benchmark Litigation, The Best Lawyers in America, The Legal 500 U.S. and Law360, which named him a “Most Valuable Practitioner” in 2013. Mr. Liman is a vice president of the Federal Bar Council and chairs its Public Service Committee. He is also a director of the New York Legal Assistance Group.


LINDA RAPPAPORT is Of Counsel at Shearman & Sterling LLP in New York City.  She is a former Practice Group Leader of the Compensation, Governance & ERISA/Private Client Group as well as a founding partner of the firm’s Corporate Governance Advisory Group.   Her practice focuses on all aspects of executive compensation and benefits, including corporate, securities and tax laws, and related corporate governance and regulatory matters. Ms. Rappaport has a special focus on the representation of global, U.S. and non-U.S. companies and their Boards of Directors and Compensation Committees in corporate governance matters, including CEO succession, public disclosure and executive compensation.  She has broad experience in the design and implementation of executive incentive programs, and in the negotiation and preparation of executive employment contracts and severance arrangements, with particular emphasis on the financial services and entertainment industries.  Her practice also encompasses all compensation, benefits and related governance issues associated with corporate acquisitions, divestitures, public offerings, restructurings and bankruptcies.

Active in lecturing, she is the author of numerous articles on a variety of corporate governance and executive compensation issues.

Ms. Rappaport became a partner of the firm in 1985. She has served 3 terms as an elected member of the firm’s Policy Committee through 2014 and has been a member of the firm’s Executive Group. She is also a founding member and adviser of the firm’s Women’s Initiative for Success, Excellence and Retention (“WISER”) as well as the firm’s Hiring Partner.  Before joining the firm in 1979, she was a Law Clerk to Chief Judge James S. Holden, U.S. District Court of the District of Vermont, from 1978 to 1979.


Named by Accounting Today as one of the “top 100 most influential people in accounting,” Michael R. Young is a litigation partner at New York’s Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP  where he chairs the firm’s securities litigation practice.

His practice concentrates on the representation of companies, audit committees, officers, directors, accounting firms, and investment banks in United States and international securities class actions, SEC proceedings, and special committee investigations.  His trial work includes the landmark jury verdict for the defense in the first class action tried to a jury pursuant to the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995.  He has served as a member of FASB’s Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council, as chair of the New York City Bar Association’s Financial Reporting Committee, and as counsel to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and the Center for Audit Quality.

A prolific author on the subjects of financial reporting, audit committee effectiveness and the role and responsibilities of the independent auditor, Mr. Young’s books include The Financial Reporting Handbook (Wolters Kluwer 2003), Accounting Irregularities and Financial Fraud (Harcourt 2000) and, most recently, Financial Fraud Prevention and Detection:  Governance and Effective Practices (Wiley 2014).  Mr. Young is a much sought speaker and commentator on financial reporting issues, and has been regularly quoted in such publications as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Fortune, Forbes, USA Today, The Washington Post, and The National Law Journal.  He has also appeared as an invited guest on Fox Business News, CNBC, MSNBC, CNN, and BNN (Canada).

Mr. Young is a graduate of Allegheny College and the Duke University School of Law, where he was Research and Managing Editor of the Duke Law Journal.


Named by NACD as one of the 100 most influential people in corporate governance and the boardroom, Stephen L. Brown is a globally recognized governance expert, thought leader and trusted advisor to corporate boards and C-suites.  Currently, he is a Senior Advisor at KPMG Board Leadership Center. At BLC, he articulates boardroom challenges and actionable thought leadership on strategy, risk, talent, technology, globalization, and financial reporting by engaging with directors, business leaders and investors. 

Mr. Brown founded The Edgerton Group, a boutique consulting firm that advises boards and management on critical corporate governance issues including anti-activist defense, executive compensation and other proxy disclosures, board evaluations and shareholder engagement.  Formerly, he led TIAA’s (Nuveen) Corporate Governance Group which managed the corporate governance and social responsibility initiatives related to the firm’s over $900 billion investment portfolio.   Mr. Brown was also the CEO of the Society of Corporate Governance, practiced securities law at WilmerHale and Skadden, and was an associate with Goldman Sachs.  He has served as a judge for Corporate Secretary Magazine Corporate Governance Awards and the NYSE Governance, Risk & Compliance Leadership Awards.

Mr. Brown is an adjunct professor at McDonough School of Business at Georgetown, Yale, and in the Skadden, Arps Honors Program in Legal Studies, Colin Powell School for Civic and Global Leadership at City College of New York.   He received his B.A. with honors from Yale and his J.D. from Columbia University Law School where he was a Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar.  He serves on several non-profit and advisory boards and was an elected public school board member. 


John W. White is a partner in Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP's Corporate Department and serves as Chair of its Corporate Governance and Board Advisory practice. From 2006 through 2008, he served as Director of the Division of Corporation Finance at the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, which oversees disclosure and reporting by public companies in the United States. During his over 25 years as a partner at Cravath, John has focused his practice on representing public companies on a wide variety of matters including, more recently, public reporting and disclosure obligations, corporate governance matters and restatements, revisions and other financial crises.

John is a member of the Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council (FASAC), which advises the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB). From 2010 to 2018, he served as a member of the Standing Advisory Group (SAG), which advises the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (PCAOB). John is a member of the Board of Directors of Financial Executives International (FEI) and a member of the Board of Trustees and Chair of the Audit Committee of the Practising Law Institute (PLI). He served three years on the New York Stock Exchange’s Legal Advisory Committee, four years as Chairman of the Securities Regulation Institute, five years as Co-chair of PLI’s Annual Institute on Securities Regulation and six years on the Board of Trustees and Audit Committee of the SEC Historical Society. John was twice selected by the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) as one of the 100 “most influential people in the boardroom and corporate governance community.”

 


Douglas Maine is a Limited Partner and Senior Advisor for Brown Brothers Harriman (BBH), a 200 year old investment bank.  In this role, he primarily works with the BBH Private Equity and Corporate Advisory units and serves on the Board of Directors for three BBHCP portfolio companies.  Additionally, he is a Director, Chairman of the Audit Committee and a member of the P&C Committee for aerospace and defense company Orbital-ATK Inc.  He is a Director, Chairman of the Audit Committee and a member of the N&G Committee for software company BroadSoft, Inc. He is a Director and member of the Audit and N&G Committees for specialty chemical company Albemarle, Inc.  Among several non-profit Boards where Maine is a Director, he serves on the PCAOB - Standing Advisory Group.  Maine is retired from IBM where he served as Chief Financial Officer and held other senior level executive positions from 1998 - 2005.  Prior to IBM he was with MCI (now merged with Verizon) for twenty years, serving as Chief Financial Officer from 1991 - 1998.


Harvey Pitt is CEO of global business consulting firm Kalorama Partners, and its law firm affiliate, Kalorama Legal Services. From 2001-03, Mr. Pitt was 26th SEC Chairman. Mr. Pitt served previously at the SEC (1968-78), including three years as General Counsel.

Mr. Pitt was a senior corporate partner at Fried, Frank LLP (1978-2001). He received his J.D. from St. John's University Law School (1968), and his B.A. from Brooklyn College (1965). He received an honorary St. John's LL.D. (2002).

Mr. Pitt serves on the PCAOB Advisory Council; is an independent director of Paulson & Co.’s international hedge funds and a member of their Audit Committees; is a member of both Millennium Capital’s and Balyasny Asset Management’s Advisory Councils. In 2017 he was appointed to the Advisory board of JBS USA Holdings, Inc.


J. Travis Laster is a Vice Chancellor on the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware. He received his A.B summa cum laude from Princeton University and his J.D. and M.A. from the University of Virginia, where he served on the Virginia Law Review, was a member of the Order of the Coif, and received the Law School Alumni Association Award for Academic Excellence. Prior to his appointment, he was one of the founding partners of Abrams & Laster LLP. While in private practice, he specialized in litigation involving Delaware corporations and other business entities, and advising on transactional matters carrying a significant risk of litigation. He also wrote and spoke frequently on aspects of business law. Before forming Abrams & Laster, he was a director of Richards, Layton & Finger P.A. Before joining Richards Layton & Finger, he clerked for the Honorable Jane R. Roth of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. He is a member of the American Bar Association, Delaware State Bar Association, and the Rodney Inn of Court.