From the Editor...
Succession planning and recruitment on a mutual fund board is a process that normally takes time, sometimes a year or more ... unless you've got to get it done in a hurry! That's exactly the situation in which the PartnerSelect Funds board members found themselves when it became clear that the adviser to the six funds they oversee—Litman Gregory Asset Management—was about to get acquired. Growing the board was something they wanted to do, and getting the full slate of directors elected by shareholders was something they had to do, but with a time constraint related to the upcoming proxy vote, time was short. We spoke exclusively with lead independent director Julie Allecta about how she and her fellow board members successfully doubled the size of the board in just a few weeks. It's a fascinating tale—and there's more to come down the road.
We also spoke recently to Invesco Funds Chairman Christopher Wilson about the importance of building and maintaining board culture during this time of remote board meetings. A couple of other independent directors and IDC Managing Director Tom Kim weighed in on the issue during the Q&A portion of a session at the ICI's 2021 Mutual Funds & Investment Management Conference last week, and we've put together an interesting piece that explores ways boards can remain close while being apart.
We've got the latest on the mutual fund litigation landscape as well, a topic discussed at the MFIMC by top industry litigators. They offered their thoughts on what's next and why boards should remain diligent about process, even as the threat of Section 36(b) cases continues to dissipate.
Earlier this month, we published a great list of 10 women who inspire, our celebration of International Women's Day. It's definitely a don't-miss read. We also recently looked at the SEC's examination priorities for 2021 and picked out what might be most relevant to the fund boardroom.
We're missing seeing folks in person during this conference season, but we're happy spring is here and things seem to be looking up. Continue to stay safe and healthy, and we'll continue looking forward to when we can all meet up again in person.
Hillary Jackson, founding editor