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Conference of Fund Leaders
The Conference of Fund Leaders (CFL) is a partnership of the Mutual Fund Directors Forum, the Ira M. Millstein Center for Global Markets and Corporate Ownership at Columbia Law School, and independent leaders of mutual fund boards of trustees.
The CFL is a permanent entity for independent board chairs and lead independent directors of mutual funds in the United States. Through its roundtables, and steering and other committees, the CFL provides a unique opportunity for the independent leaders of fund boards to come together with their peers to discuss governance issues that board leaders and their funds face; proactively present their views on policy matters important to fund investors and independent directors, regulators and lawmakers; and promote research into the value and impact of effective, independent leadership at mutual funds.
CFL Steering Committee
Activities of the Conference of Fund Leaders are guided by a Steering Committee composed of the following individuals:
Ashok Bakhru - Independent Chair, Goldman Sachs Funds
Peter Clapman - Former Chair, AARP Funds; Advisory Board, Millstein Center
Bruce Crockett -–Independent Chair, Invesco Funds
John Hill - Putnam Funds; Advisory Board, Millstein Center
Allan Reich – Independent Chair, Oakmark Funds
Previous CFL Events
October 7, 2014 - New York, NY
This roundtable focused on factors board consider when evaluating CCO compensation and recent litigation relevant to mutual funds. James N. Benedict with Milbank, Tweed, Hadley & McCloy and Meyrick Payne of Management Practice, Inc. lead the conversation.
March 4, 2014 - New York, NY
This meeting at the March 4 CFL focused on board oversight of issues related to cyber-security and the increasing tendency of the SEC staff to request meetings with fund board members. Speakers included Robert Mulhall and Jamie Kahan of Ernst & Young, Rajib Chanda, partner at Ropes & Gray, and Jay Baris, a partner at Morrison & Foerster, LLP.
November 11, 2013 - New York, NY
The discussion at the November 11 CFL focused on board oversight of alternative investments and on fund trading issues. Featured speakers included Andrew J. "Buddy" Donohue, Deputy General Counsel at Goldman Sachs Asset Management, and Brad Katsuyama, President & CEO of IEX, the first buy-side owned ATS in the United States.
June 18, 2013 - New York, NY
The discussion at the June 18 roundtable focused on two critical topics for boards: oversight of omnibus account payments and corporate governance challenges.
February 19, 2013 - New York, NY
This meeting featured a conversation about the SEC's allegations against the Regions Morgan Keegan In a case filed in December 2012. Robert Helm of Dechert facilitated the discussion about the issues raised in the SEC’s order.
April 24, 2012 - New York, NY
This meeting featured a conversation about current trends in mutual fund regulation, including money market funds. In addition, Congressman Jim Himes (D-CT) spoke to the group about the current role of politics in financial services regulation.
November 14, 2011 - New York, NY
This meeting featured a discussion of how boards oversee performance in times of market volatility. The group also discussed models of proxy voting.
June 3, 2011 - New York, NY
This meeting featured a "plain English" overview of academic research on mutual funds of interest to fund directors.
October 5, 2010 - New York, NY
The fall 2010 meeting addressed changing theories of fund liability and recent SEC rule changes.
March 1, 2010 - Washington DC
Attendees discussed the unique role of independent chairs and leads in the oversight of risk, particularly enterprise risk.
June 24, 2009 - New York, NY
This special CFL roundtable was a rare opportunity for fund board leaders to participate in an off-the-record discussion of financial regulatory reform led by four former chairmen of the Securities and Exchange Commission.
October 27, 2008 - New York NY
Attendees discussed the potential scope of regulatory reform in the financial services industry, and recent fee litigation, in particular, the Harris case. In addition, John Coates of Harvard Law School presented his new research findings analyzing the international competitiveness of U.S. mutual funds. Following the discussion the group enjoyed a reception and then a working dinner.