Lecture Paul D. Merrill Business Ethics Lecture
Robert A.G. Monks is a pioneering shareholder activist and one of the founders of the field of corporate governance. He is the author of Corpocracy and The New Global Investors, and with Nell Minow, Watching the Watchers, Corporate Governance and Power & Accountability.
He is referred to by The Economist and Fortune magazines as the leading shareholder activist and governance advocate in the world. He was the recipient of both the Award for Excellence in Corporate Governance from the International Corporate Governance Network (“ICGN”) in 2002 and the Award for Outstanding Financial Executive from the Financial Management Association (“FMA”) in 2007.
A respected and successful businessman, Monks continues to lead efforts to improve corporate governance systems in the United States, including a prominent candidacy for the board of directors of Sears Roebuck in 1991.
Aside from successful efforts to organize shareholders to affect policy in several companies, Mr. Monks quickly saw that managements could largely ignore shareholder expressions with impunity
Because of this, Monks believes that one of the best ways to improve the governance of American corporations is through the settlement process of securities lawsuits. This insight has been confirmed by many other class action and derivative litigators and by the United States Bankruptcy Court in enforcing the comprehensive governance restatement proposed by former SEC Chairman Richard Breeden in the MCI (formerly WorldCom) matter. Mr. Monks has been involved in settlements with respect to Shell, British Petroleum, Citigroup and Nortel, among others.
Department of Business and Communications