New York Stock Exchange interim chairman proposes slimmer, independent board

Wednesday, November 5th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

NEW YORK (AP) _ New York Stock Exchange interim chairman John Reed nominated a set of candidates Wednesday for a trimmed-down NYSE board intended to improve regulation and sweep away conflicts of interest.

The nominations are part of a package of reforms proposed by Reed, who joined the NYSE in late September after former chairman Dick Grasso resigned amid outrage over his $188 million compensation package.

The proposals call for representatives of the securities industry or directors who were involved in approving Grasso's compensation package to step down.

The current 27-member board would be replaced by a board of six to 12 members who will oversee regulation and compensation. A separate executive panel of the securities industry would handle operations, such as listing standards.

``I think this board will serve the New York Stock Exchange well, and I think it will serve the American public well,'' Reed said.

At Reed's request, a majority of the current directors have already submitted their resignations, which will take effect if the proposals are approved by the NYSE's 1,366 members. Members are being asked to approve the plan by Nov. 18.

The nominees include two current NYSE board members, former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, and Herb Allison, chairman of the teachers pension fund TIAA-CREF.

Other nominees are Euan Baird, former chairman of oilfield services concern Schlumberger Ltd.; Marshall Carter, former head of State Street Bank; Shirley Ann Jackson, president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; James S. McDonald, former chief executive of Rockefeller & Co.; Robert Shapiro, former chairman of agricultural and chemical giant Monsanto Co.; and Sir Dennis Weatherstone, former CEO of J.P. Morgan Chase.

Other proposals include requiring the exchange to disclose information such as the amount of compensation for the CEO and top management officials. Companies listed on the exchange already have such disclosure requirements.