The Shareholder Forum

supporting investor access

for the informed use of capital to produce goods and services


The Shareholder Forum


The Shareholder Forum provides all decision-makers – from the ultimate owners of capital to the corporate managers who use their capital, and all of the professionals in between – with reliably effective access to the information and views participants consider relevant to their respective responsibilities for the common objective of using capital to produce goods and services.

Having pioneered what became the widespread practice of "corporate access" events over two decades ago, the Forum continues to refine its "Direct Access" practices to assure effective support of marketplace interests.

Access Policies

To provide the required investor access without regulatory constraints, the Forum developed policies and practices allowing it to function as an SEC-defined independent moderator. We also adopted well-established publishing standards to assure essential participant privacy and communication rights.

These carefully defined and thoroughly tested Forum policies are the foundation of our unique marketplace resource for clearly fair access to information and exchanges of views.


We have been doing this for more than two decades. The Forum programs were initiated in 1999 by the CFA Society New York (at the time known as the New York Society of Security Analysts) with lead investor and former corporate investment banker Gary Lutin as guest chairman to address the professional interests of the Society’s members.

Independently supported by Mr. Lutin since 2001, the Forum’s public programs – often in collaboration with the CFA Society as well as with other educational institutions such as the Columbia Schools of Business and Journalism, the Yale School of Management and The Conference Board – have achieved wide recognition for their effective definition of both company-specific and marketplace issues, followed by an orderly exchange of the information and views needed to resolve them.

The Forum's ability to convene all key decision-making constituencies and influence leaders has been applied to subjects ranging from corporate control contests to the establishment of consensus marketplace standards for fair disclosure, and has been relied upon by virtually every major U.S. fund manager and the many other investors who have participated in programs that addressed their interests.


The Forum welcomes suggestions for its continuing support of fair access to the information needed by both shareholders and corporate managers.

Responding to the recent increases in investor engagement and activism, we have established a strong policy commitment to supporting corporate managers who wish to provide the leadership expected of them by assuring orderly reviews of issues. We will of course also continue to welcome the initiation of company-specific programs by shareholders concerned with the use of their capital to produce goods and services, and we naturally remain committed to addressing general marketplace interests in collaboration with educational institutions and publishers.


IR Magazine, March 3, 2010 article


IR Society webinar emphasizes getting the vote out

Mar 03, 2010

Experts proffer advice for issuers looking to secure votes at the annual meeting

Issuers were given advice in the lead-up to this year’s frenetic annual meeting period during an IR Society Webinar yesterday.

The webinar, ‘The proxy conundrum: keeping track of the votes in a digital age’, included contributions from John Botha of Broadridge, Peter Swabey of Equiniti and Cas Sydorowitz of Georgeson.

Difficulties with the proxy voting process were highlighted. ‘We often see a disconnect between the portfolio managers the issuers are speaking to and the proxy voting teams,’ Botha explained. ‘It’s very often the case that an issuer may have talked to the portfolio manager about an issue but communication doesn’t reach the back office, or proxy teams have their own way of doing things. There have been cases where solicitors have notified us when they think the vote has been cast differently from the way the fund manager intended.’

Sydorowitz expected more pressure from shareholders this proxy season. ‘Executive pay is no longer the sole target,’ he said. ‘Investors will also be looking at director elections, board structure and the independence of directors.’

Sydorowitz also warned that shareholders are using new ways to galvanize voters on certain issues. In December last year, for example, a large number of retail shareholders communicated via Facebook and Interactive Investor how they intended to vote on a proposed buyout of Dragon Oil.

Panelists further discussed the difficulties of improving retail participation. Because most retail shareholders sit behind private client brokers and transaction-only brokers, they don’t always receive notification of the upcoming meeting.

‘In terms of trying to increase the retail vote, in many ways apathy rules,’ Botha pointed out. ‘It depends how many shareholders the company has and whether companies have taken advantage of the new shareholder communications rules. If you just send a letter stating, The annual report is on the website and don’t enclose a proxy card, you reduce the likelihood of retail participation.’

Clare Harrison




Inquiries, requests to be included in email distribution lists, and suggestions of new Forum subjects may be addressed to

Publicly open programs of the Shareholder Forum are conducted for free participation of all shareholders of a subject company and any fiduciaries or professionals concerned with their decisions, according to the Forum’s stated "Conditions of Participation." In all cases, each participant is expected to make independent use of information obtained through the Forum, and participation is considered private unless the party specifically authorizes identification.

The information provided to Forum participants is intended for their private reference, and permission has not been granted for the republishing of any copyrighted material. The material presented on this web site is the responsibility of Gary Lutin, as chairman of the Shareholder Forum.

Shareholder Forum™ is a trademark owned by The Shareholder Forum, Inc., for the programs conducted since 1999 to support investor access to decision-making information. It should be noted that we have no responsibility for the services that Broadridge Financial Solutions, Inc., introduced for review in the Forum's 2010 "E-Meetings" program and had been offering for several years with the “Shareholder Forum” name, and we have asked Broadridge to use a different name that does not suggest our support or endorsement.