NACD Shares Institutional Investors' Priorities for Corporate Boards

WASHINGTON, April 2, 2014 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) today announced the release of Investor Perspectives: Critical Issues for Board Focus in 2014, available at To listen to a recorded discussion of the report, go to

The report summarizes NACD's findings from meetings with major investors in February 2014 to discuss critical governance issues for board focus in 2014. These dialogues involved U.S. institutional shareholders representing nearly $13 trillion in assets under management and included representatives from BlackRock, CalSTRS, Calvert Investments, Capital Group, Council of Institutional Investors, Fidelity, State Street Global Advisors, TIAA-CREF, T. Rowe Price, and Vanguard.

"Critical Issues for Board Focus is both timely and highly relevant for boards at companies of all sizes," said Zach Oleksiuk, head of Corporate Governance and Responsible Investment for the Americas at BlackRock. "We look forward to continuing engagement with directors at our portfolio companies, and we expect NACD's practical guidelines to improve the quality of those conversations."

NACD's decade-long collaboration with directors, regulators, and investors identifies strategies to enhance the effectiveness of board-shareholder communications. Effective board-shareholder communications is a critical tenet of NACD's Key Agreed Principles available at The importance of robust dialogue is underscored by the dramatic increase in shareholder activity over the past several years. The number of shareholder actions carried out across the globe swelled by 88 percent between January 2010 and September 2013, and the number of shareholders with specific strategic requests has doubled over the past decade, according to recent reports.

"Board-shareholder communications have come a long way in recent years, but the bar keeps getting higher. I look forward to sharing Critical Issues for Board Focus with my fellow directors," added Karen Horn, director, NACD, Eli Lilly, Simon Property Group, Norfolk Southern, T. Rowe Price Mutual Funds, and the Investment Company Institute.

The conclusions identified in Investor Perspectives: Critical Issues for Board Focus in 2014 will inform NACD's ongoing research and director education programming. While discussion participants emphasized that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to governance, the report is intended to help NACD's more than 14,000 members not only engage in an ongoing dialogue with their top investors, but be prepared to take appropriate action.

"The importance of board-shareholder communications has always been a part of NACD's philosophy," said NACD President and CEO Ken Daly. "In the current environment, we believe it is critical to give directors practical advice, not just on how to engage with their top investors, but on which issues."

Visit to read the full report, which includes a series of suggested questions to help directors benchmark their board's shareholder communications and the list of participating investors.

NACD's ongoing collaboration with major investors also led to the recently released guide Preparing the 2014 CD&A: Priority Considerations for Boards, available at

About NACD

The National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD) is the recognized authority focused on advancing exemplary board leadership and establishing leading boardroom practices. Informed by more than 35 years of experience, NACD delivers insights and resources that more than 14,000 corporate director members rely upon to make sound strategic decisions and confidently confront complex business challenges. NACD provides world-class director education programs, national peer-exchange forums, and proprietary research to promote director professionalism, ultimately enhancing the economic sustainability of the enterprise and bolstering stakeholder confidence. Fostering collaboration among directors, investors, and governance stakeholders, NACD is shaping the future of board leadership. To learn more about NACD, visit To become an NACD member, contact Kelly Dodd at or 202-380-1891.

CONTACT: Media Contact: Henry Stoever 202-572-2102 hstoever@NACDonline.orgSource:National Association of Corporate Directors