After Incidents Across Years, a CEO’s Sudden Exit

Agenda reports on the “sudden” departure of Matt Maddox from Wynn Resorts after a now-revealed series of troubling behavior over a longer period. Despite the dismissal for what in any other position would be considered “cause,” the official position is that it was a voluntary departure: “Mr. Maddox’s decision to step down as CEO was…

The Most Overpaid and Underpaid Boards (Jan. 4)

Agenda’s study of the most overpaid and underpaid boards includes repeats in both categories. Some of the explanations are illuminating: At Goldman, total comp for directors actually decreased in 2020 to a flat $450,000 per director, from $575,000 in 2019. Of course, the change was a concession that Goldman’s board made this year to settle…

Agenda – Millions of Dollars on the Line as Insurers Deny D&O Claims

We have been long-time advocates of tougher standards from D&O insurers, and of discounts on premiums for companies with exemplary governance. Insurers are taking a “really strict” view of claims and what is covered by a D&O policy, according to Jared Zola, a partner in Blank Rome’s policyholder-only insurance practice. There tend to be very…

The queasy ‘Enron feeling’ that directors must never ignore | Financial Times

VEA Vice Chair Nell Minow is quoted in an article looking back on the 20th anniversary of the collapse of Enron. “Unquestionably, boards are sharper, more independent, more focused, and more engaged,” says Nell Minow, vice chair of ValueEdge Advisors and a longstanding critic of poor governance and campaigner for shareholder rights. Still, since 2001,…

Agenda – Audit Committees Question Climate Competency

Climate change has now become the issue of the 21st century. With the conclusion of COP26 in Glasgow, Scotland — bookended by India’s commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by 2070 and the historic U.S.-China agreement to reach the 1.5 C temperature goal outlined in the Paris Agreement — the three largest polluters in the world…