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Webinar – Activism in 2023: Trends, challenges and preparedness – Speaker biographies

Moderator: Steve Wade, head of event content, IR Magazine and Corporate Secretary
Steve Wade is the head of event content at IR Media Group. As a content researcher, conference producer, and event host for IR Magazine and Corporate Secretary, Steve is responsible for gathering intelligence on public companies' most significant global issues. Steve’s team develops events that promote excellence in investor relations, governance, and sustainability for issuers and investors.

Prior to Corporate Secretary, Steve’s background was in corporate social responsibility and responsible investment. During his time at Ethical Corporation (now Reuters Events), Steve launched the ESG symposium; an event focused on connecting the socially responsible investment community with corporate sustainability leaders at listed companies. Steve was a judge for the Deloitte Green Frog Awards, celebrating the best corporate reporting in Eastern Europe. Steve also presented research at the Global Sustainable Event Summit in London and has spoken about extra-financial reporting with the United Nations Global Compact, the World Bank, and the Polish Ministry of Finance.

Steve has a BSC in Event Management, is a member of working groups toward improved practices in international event management, and enjoys swimming, rugby and outdoor pursuits in his spare time.

 

Jared Levy, partner, FGS Global
Jared Levy co-leads FGS Global’s Transaction and Financial Communications practice in North America. He advises a wide range of clients on complex M&A transactions, proxy contests and shareholder activism campaigns, management changes, corporate positioning, and ongoing media and investor relations programs.

Recent assignments include advising Bed Bath & Beyond on shareholder agitation by RC Ventures/Ryan Cohen; Rogers Corporation on its relaunch following the termination of its acquisition by DuPont; American Equity Life Insurance on agitation from Brookfield Asset Management and an unsolicited offer from Prosperity Life/Elliott Management; Genesco on its successful proxy defense against Legion Partners; II-VI on its acquisition of Coherent; Durational Capital on its take private of Casper Sleep; NortonLifeLock on its acquisition of Avast; and Harley-Davidson on the separation of its EV motorcycle business, LiveWire.

Over his career, Jared has advised on many notable M&A transactions and proxy contests, including L3 on its $34 billion merger of equals with Harris Corporation; Automatic Data Processing (ADP) on its successful proxy defense against Pershing Square; LATAM Air Lines Group on its joint venture with Delta Air Lines; Molson Coors on its U.S. joint venture with SABMiller; Sherwin-Williams on its acquisition of Valspar; Continental Airlines on its merger with United Airlines; NYSE Euronext on its attempted merger with Deutsche Boerse and, ultimately, its acquisition by ICE.

Jared graduated Union College with a BA in Economics and a minor in Psychology.

 

Amy Lissauer, managing director and global head of activism and raid defense, Bank of America
Amy Lissauer is a Managing Director and Global Head of Activism and Raid Defense at Bank of America. In her role, she advises companies across all industries on activism and raid defense, contested shareholder situations, proxy solicitations, investor relations and corporate governance matters. Ms. Lissauer has advised over 200 companies facing activism or strategic raids.

Prior to joining Bank of America, Ms. Lissauer was a Managing Director at Evercore where she helped to cofound the activism and raid defense team. Prior to Evercore, she was the COO of Executive Finance at Bridgewater Associates (Dalio Family Office). Prior to Bridgewater Associates, she was a Vice President in Goldman Sachs’ Mergers and Acquisitions Group and an Associate in Goldman Sachs’ Global Investment Research Division in the Global Markets Institute, where she authored economic and policy research.

Ms. Lissauer has a B.S. from Cornell University. She has published articles and speaks frequently on mergers & acquisitions, hostile activity, and board/shareholder interaction.

 

Kelsey Markovich, partner, FGS Global
Kelsey Markovich advises clients on complex, high-stakes transactions and special situations affecting reputation and/or market value, including mergers and acquisitions, shareholder activism, IPOs, executive leadership changes and crises, and ongoing corporate positioning programs.

Kelsey has provided strategic communications counsel and support to numerous clients on shareholder activism matters, including several proxy fights that have gone to a vote at companies’ annual meetings of shareholders. Select engagements include Trian Partners on its proxy fights against Procter & Gamble and DuPont; GeoPark on its defense against a proxy fight waged by its Co-Founder and Former Chairman Gerry O'Shaughnessy; Wynn Resorts on its defense against a withhold vote campaign by Elaine Wynn; and Herbalife on its defense against Pershing Square.  She has provided shareholder activism defense preparation to a number of other companies.

Recently, she has supported Zoom across a number of matters, including crisis and reputation management, public affairs, litigation, and transaction and financial communications. She has also advised on numerous transactions, IPOs, and other special situations, including Fiat Chrysler Automobiles on its merger with Groupe PSA and its previously proposed transaction with Groupe Renault; Warner Music Group’s IPO on the Nasdaq; Takata Corporation on its global automotive airbag inflator recall and corporate restructuring; and Wynn Resorts surrounding sexual harassment allegations against its founder, including regulatory issues around the opening of Encore Boston Harbor.

Kelsey graduated summa cum laude with departmental honors from Wake Forest University with a B.A. in Communications.