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Sarbanes-Oxley and the Board of Directors : Techniques and Best Practices for Corporate Governance

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If you're a sitting or prospective board member of a corporation, how can you ensure that you and other directors are in compliance with Sarbanes-Oxley and other regulatory requirements? How can you maximize your contribution to the board and the company, and minimize your risk as a board member?

Serving on the board of directors of a company is a tremendous honor, but now it's also a tremendous responsibility. Due to legislation and regulations stemming from corporate fraud at Enron, WorldCom, and other companies, board members are now under scrutiny—particularly their role in the oversight of financial reporting and corporate governance practices. Board members must be informed and engaged. Directors are charged to represent the interest of the company's shareholders. Failure can result in damage to a person's reputation and personal liability. The risks are not limited to directors of large public companies. Recent legislation applies to publicly held companies, but not-for-profit entities and other companies are increasingly held to similar standards.

Sarbanes-Oxley and the Board of Directors is a practical, down-to-earth guide for board members. It covers everything from board basics to compliance with regulations . . . from corporate culture and values to assessing and reacting to hostile shareholder activities.

Complete with real-world examples, vignettes, case studies, and other information, this guide helps board members, CEOs, CFOs, and others understand their responsibilities and potential liabilities and implement effective corporate governance. It covers:

  • Building a strong framework for effective governance
  • Ways to protect board members (including an analysis of the strengths and weaknesses of indemnity and insurance protections)
  • Board committees—ones to have and ones to avoid
  • Establishing high standards and healthy board dynamics
  • Specific guidance for effective corporate oversight and communications
  • Red flags that signal the need for prompt investigation and action
  • Specific issues faced by not-for-profit boards, advisory boards, and boards of small public companies

Sarbanes-Oxley and the Board of Directors also includes proven best practices from preeminent companies that can serve as benchmarks and models for evaluating and strengthening corporate governance. It gives directors the knowledge, techniques, and tools to serve the company and its stockholders well.

About the Author

SCOTT GREEN, CPA, is the Compliance Director for Weil, Gotshal and Manges (one of the largest law firms in the world), and has nearly twenty years of experience in the related fields of corporate governance, management controls, finance, and accounting. He is a graduate of the University of Idaho and Harvard Business School. A sought-after speaker and expert on Sarbanes-Oxley, Green has written numerous articles published in professional journals. He authored Manager's Guide to the Sarbanes-Oxley Act: Improving Internal Controls to Prevent Fraud, also published by Wiley.

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