The Harvard Law School Proxy Access Roundtable: The Transcript

The Harvard Law School Program on Corporate Governance recently released as a working paper the transcript of the Program’s Proxy Access Roundtable, which was held late last year.  The working paper containing the transcript is available here. The editors, Lucian Bebchuk and Scott Hirst, have also submitted the transcript to the Securities and Exchange Commission as a comment on the Commission’s proposed rule on proxy access, Facilitating Shareholder Director Nominations, and hope that it will be a useful contribution as the Commission considers rulemaking on the subject.

The Roundtable brought together prominent participants in the debate – representing a range of perspectives and experiences – for a day of discussion on the subject.  The day’s first two sessions focused on the question of whether the Securities and Exchange Commission should provide an access regime, or whether it should leave the adoption of access arrangements, if any, to private ordering on a company-by-company basis. The third session focused on how a proxy access regime should be designed, assuming the Securities and Exchange Commission were to adopt such an access regime. The final session went beyond proxy access and focused on whether there are any further changes to the arrangements governing corporate elections that should be considered. Further information about the Roundtable is available here.  The transcript was edited by the participants and the editors, with the aim of retaining the spirit of the Roundtable while ensuring that the message of each participant is clearly and accurately conveyed to readers.

Speakers at the roundtable include Joseph Bachelder (The Bachelder Firm), Michal Barzuza (University of Virginia School of Law), Lucian Bebchuk (Harvard Law School), Robert Clark (Harvard Law School), John Coates (Harvard Law School), Isaac Corré (Eton Park Capital Management L.P.), Steven M. Davidoff (University of Connecticut School of Law), Jay Eisenhofer (Grant & Eisenhofer P.A.), Richard Ferlauto (American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees [AFSCME]), Abe Friedman (Barclays Global Investors), Byron Georgiou (Of Counsel, Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins LLP),  Kayla Gillan (U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission), Jeffrey Gordon (Columbia Law School), Edward Greene (Cleary Gottlieb Steen & Hamilton LLP), Joseph Grundfest (Stanford Law School), Howell Jackson (Harvard Law School), Roy Katzovicz (Pershing Square Capital Management, L.P.), Stephen Lamb (Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP), Mark Lebovitch (Bernstein Litowitz Berger & Grossmann LLP), Lance Lindblom (The Nathan Cummings Foundation), Simon Lorne (Millennium Management LLC), Robert Mendelsohn (formerly of Royal and Sun Alliance Insurance Group), Ted Mirvis (Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz), James Morphy (Sullivan & Cromwell LLP), Toby Myerson (Paul,Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP), Annette Nazareth (Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP), John F. Olson (Georgetown University Law Center), Mark Roe (Harvard Law School), Eric Roiter (Boston University School of Law), Leo Strine (Delaware Chancery Court), Daniel Summerfield (Universities Superannuation Scheme), Greg Taxin (formerly of Glass, Lewis & Co.) and John C. Wilcox (Sodali Ltd).

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