Number of companies with meaningful proxy access has grown 5,266% in just two years
17 companies targeted for proxy access due to a lack of diversity have named a woman or minority director in the last two years
NYC Funds’ 2016 Post-Season Report highlights proxy access, political spending disclosure, and other governance initiatives
Proxy Access is the ability of large, long-term investors to nominate board directors on a company’s ballot. In 2010, the SEC enacted a universal proxy access rule, which was subsequently challenged in court and overturned on technical grounds. In response, Comptroller Stringer and the New York City Pension Funds launched the Boardroom Accountability Project in 2014 to bring this right to the U.S. market, company by company. Firms were targeted if they had little or no board diversity, excessive CEO pay, or substantial exposure to risks related to climate change, such as a reliance on carbon-intensive business practices.
Over the last year, the New York City Pension Funds and Comptroller Stringer have encouraged numerous energy companies to increase transparency around political spending and enact policies that give their boards of directors oversight over this practice. These moves enable investors to determine whether corporate political spending actually aligns with the long-term interests of the company and investors.