Hank Boerner
Hank Boerner


Hank Boerner Speaks at The Forum Club - (July 1, 2003)

Hank Boerner, Corporate Governance And Accountability Expert, Says Wall Street And Corporate Community Are Adjusting To "New Era Of Accountability," Will Address Forum Club Luncheon July 8th
(New York, NY, July 1, 2003)

The lengthening list of "fallen business leaders" who frequent the evening news is a visible sign of the dramatic, broad-based and fundamental changes now impacting Wall Street and the nation's corporations. Citizens and government agencies are demanding greater personal and institutional accountability from those who lead the financial community and the nation's publicly-held corporations, and those who manage their investments on Wall Street.

Henry (Hank) Boerner, pioneering corporate governance/institutional accountability expert, will offer his views for Wall Street's and Corporate America's recent troubles -- and the serious erosion of public trust and confidence in both the financial markets and American companies at the Forum Club luncheon Tuesday, July 8th at 1 p.m. at 8 E. 69th Street. Also speaking at the luncheon, on the topic of "Ethics and the Media," is noted journalist and author Carl Bernstein of Watergate fame.

Notes Boerner: "While the common wisdom in some quarters is that much of the recent reforms 'could all go away' as the stock market regains momentum and share prices rise, the reforms taking place in the American society have ushered in a new era of accountability for business leaders. The investor's lack of trust and confidence in the capital markets, the Wall Street community and the corporate sector remain deep and personal financial losses have been very painful. As 401-Ks became 201-Ks, and details of the spectacular corporate collapses - Enron, WorldCom, Global Crossing - became public, the public outcry for reform became a chorus that policymakers and prosecutors could not ignore.

For the third time in modern American history, corporations will have to make major adjustments in their behavior to develop greater accountability with both stakeholders and stockholders. The first time was during the early 1900s "trust-buster" era, and the start of the Progressive Era under President Teddy Roosevelt; the second era of great reform began with President Franklin Roosevelt's "New Deal," including sweeping securities protection legislation in 1933 and 1934; the third era began with calls for reform from President George W. Bush in his State of the Union, as Enron and WorldCom collapsed and prosecutorial action by NYS Attorney General Eliot Spitzer. Many forces have since converged to create a tidal wave of change.

"Even when the stock market rebounds," Boerner explains, "investors will be likelyo to eye corporate behavior quite critically, and Corporate America needs to accept certain reforms to regain shareholder trust. Reform isn't going away, and investors are looking for signs of serious change in Wall Street behavior, as well as in boardrooms and executives suites. They want signs of change, contrition, confession, and above all future compliance with all laws and regulations. The long-term trend is clearly for greater accountability from all institutions affecting our lives, including religious organizations, charities and public agencies."

This "New Era of Accountability," Boerner believes, is in its sunrise days, and will ultimately require major adjustments in accountability by corporations, financial markets, government agencies, and even non-profit institutions to meet rising public expectations. For the third time in modern American history, corporations will have to make major adjustments in behavior to develop greater accountability with both stakeholders and stockholders. "We will be hearing much more about 'social responsibility' in the days ahead," Boerner advises.

Henry (Hank) Boerner, Managing Director-New York, Rowan & Blewitt, has three decades of strategic corporate communications, crisis management, financial relations, and issue management experience. He has expertise in senior level management communications and is an authority on corporate governance, institutional accountability and social responsibility trends that affect corporations, public sector agencies, non-profit organizations, and large trade associations. Boerner writes extensive commentary on governance trends and the effects of external challenges posed to corporations by the financial community, institutional investors, activist organizations, media, and the public sector.

Copyright 2005 H.L. Boerner. All rights reserved.

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