With companies and investors increasingly talking about governance, IROs should add these names to their contact list
Michelle Edkins, managing director and global head of corporate governance, BlackRock
Michelle Edkins firmly believes the central issue in governance today is ‘the quality of the people on the board’ and the extent to which these individuals are ‘a competitive advantage for the company.’
Unlike some, she is not overly concerned with executive compensation. ‘Where you have a good board with good pay structures, pay outcomes are seldom going to be a problem,’ she says.
– In the event of board-level issues like a dissident slate, Edkins prefers the team to meet with independent directors; in other instances, the team is happy to speak with the IRO, corporate secretary or general counsel.
– She appreciates companies that send emails as ‘a light-touch check in’, inviting BlackRock to meet should there be concerns.
– Outside of work, Edkins, who was born in New Zealand, spends time with her children, walks the dog and is learning to bake bread properly.