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Shareholder Democracy and Corporate Governance

Rich Ferlauto, who handles shareholder activism for the American Federation of State, County, and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) pension funds, discusses shareholder democracy and corporate governance. Currently, shareholders cannot nominate candidates for corporate boards of directors, and those directors can be elected on a single vote. A federal appeals court recently ruled in favor of AFSCME against the American International Group in allowing the union access to the corporate ballot to nominate directors. Ferlauto also discusses the move to establish majority vote director elections that is gaining steam. He criticizes the Securities and Exchange Commission for failing to support shareholder rights.