Governance consultant announced

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Holly J. Gregory, a partner in the New York law firm of Weil, Gotshal and Manges LLP, will be the governance consultant to assist the board with its evaluation and discussion of ongoing governance issues. The Committee on Governance and Long-Range Planning voted Nov. 15 to recommend Gregory for the role, and announced the selection to the full board today (Nov. 22).

Gregory counsels clients on the full range of governance issues, including fiduciary duties, risk oversight, conflicts of interest, board and committee structure, board leadership structures, audit committee investigations, board audits and self-evaluation processes, shareholder initiatives, proxy contests, relationships with shareholders and proxy advisory firms, compliance with legislative, regulatory and listing rule requirements, and governance “best practice.”

Gregory is widely recognized for her governance work, including most recently as: the best in Corporate Governance at Euromoney Legal Media Group’s inaugural Americas Women in Business Law Awards 2012; the leading practitioner in corporate governance law in the Guide to the World’s Leading Women in Business Law (July 2010); among the “100 Most Influential Players in Corporate Governance” (NACD/Directorship 100), Directorship Magazine, 2013 and prior years; and a “Leading Practitioner in Corporate Governance” in The International Who’s Who of Corporate Governance Lawyers, 2013 and prior years. For more information about Gregory, visit online.

As noted in the September meeting of the committee, as well as in the full board meeting on Sept. 19, the committee is seeking an outside expert to advise and assist with respect to ongoing governance issues. In its request for proposals, the committee sought a consultant to assist with the evaluation and discussion of issues related to University governance. These issues have been presented in a variety of board assessments produced by stakeholders, both internal and external to the University. Some questions include the optimal size of the board; the composition of the board and the method of election and selection of the members; term limits; and communication platforms to share information both among board members and stakeholders, to name a few.

The committee worked in conjunction with the University’s Procurement Services department, and 11 firms responded to the request for proposals.

"Upon receiving the 11 proposals, a subset of this committee — Barb Doran, Keith Masser and myself, with the assistance of the Procurement Services Department and Office of the Board of Trustees staff — evaluated the proposals using several criteria, including each submitting firm’s background and knowledge of board governance, experience with facilitating similar groups, and references," said Keith Eckel, chair of the committee. "Following that evaluation and also considering requests for additional information received from several firms, we narrowed the list to three firms for further consideration."

On Oct. 31 and Nov. 1, the three firms made presentations to committee members, and the committee selected Gregory as its recommended vendor during a conference call on Nov. 15.

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Last Updated November 25, 2013