2021 PRI Board elections results

The 2021 PRI Board election was for four asset owners and one investment manager representative positions. There were ten candidates competing for four asset owner positions and ten candidates competing for one investment manager position.

Signatories voted for respective candidates and elected Scott Connolly, Wendy Cromwell, Sharon Hendricks, Wilhelm Mohn, and Laetitia Tankwe as the PRI Board Directors for three-year terms.

Signatories voted to confirm the appointment of Deloitte as the PRI Association’s new auditor. Signatories also voted to receive the annual report and accounts, and approved the Signatory General Meeting minutes.

Asset owner representative votes

Each asset owner signatory had the opportunity to vote for four candidates out of ten nominated. The four candidates Sharon Hendricks, Laetitia Tankwe, Wilhelm Mohn, and Scott Connolly received the highest votes and are elected as board directors for three-year terms.

Asset owner candidates Statement Video Votes

Sharon Hendricks, Vice-chair, CalSTRS Board

Statement

Video

241
(20.5%)

Laetitia Tankwe, Advisor to Ircantec President, Ircantec

Statement

Video

210
(17.8%)

Wilhelm Mohn, Global Co-Head of Corporate Governance, Norwegian Government Pension Fund Global (Norwegian Ministry of Finance and Norges Bank Investment Management)

Statement

Video

161
(13.7%)

Scott Connolly, Trustee Director, Telstra Super

Statement

Video

137
(11.6%)

Peter Coveliers, Head of Group Corporate Programmes and Institutional Business Development, European Investment Fund

Statement

Video

97
(8.2%)

Denísio Liberato, Equity Director, PREVI

Statement

Video

95
(8.1%)

Juan Camilo Osorio, Chairman of the Board, Afore Sura

Statement

Video

74
(6.3%)

Kamal Mitha, Head of Investments, Sasria

Statement

Video

59
(5.0%)

Massimo di Tria, Chief Investment Officer, Società Cattolica di Assicurazione S.p.A.

Statement

Video

59
(5.0%)

Alex Hindson, Chief Risk and Sustainability Officer, Argo Group International Holdings Limited

Statement

Video

45
(3.8%)

Abstain

13
(3.8%)

Total voters

338

Candidate vote % is calculated as number of votes for the candidate divided by total aggregate votes (1178).

Investment manager representative votes

Each investment manager signatory had the opportunity to vote for one candidate out of the ten nominated. Wendy Cromwell received the highest votes and is re-elected as a board director for a three-year term.

Investment manager candidates Statement Video Votes

Wendy Cromwell, Head of Sustainable Investment, Wellington Management Company, LLP

Statement

Video

381
(34.5%)

Karina Funk, Portfolio Manager and Chair of Sustainable Investing, Brown Advisory

Statement

Video

144
(13.1%)

Tatjana Puhan, Deputy CIO, TOBAM

Statement

Video

140
(12.7%)

Hanneke Smits, CEO, Bank of New York Mellon Investment Management

Statement

Video

125
(11.3%)

Maribel Monterrubio, CEO, Vitalis

Statement

Video

116
(10.5%)

Alison Schneider, Vice-President, Responsible Investment, Alberta Investment Management Corporation – AIMCo

Statement

Video

84
(7.6%)

Papa Madiaw Ndiaye, CEO, AFIG Funds

Statement

Video

46
(4.2%)

Melchior de Muralt, Managing Partner, De Pury Pictet Turrettini & Cie

Statement

Video

45
(4.1%)

Alan Feld, Founder and Managing Partner, Vintage Investment Partners

Statement

Video

14
(1.3%)

Helmut Schuehsler, CEO and Chairman, TVM Capital Healthcare Partners

Statement

Video

8
(0.7%)

Abstain

60
(5.2%)

Total voters

1163

Voting breakdown

Voting item For Oppose Abstain Total

Confirm the appointment of the Auditor

1534
(99.4%)

9
(0.6%)

96
(5.9%)

1639

2021 Annual Report and accounts

1491
(99.8%)

3
(0.2%)

145
(8.8%)

1639

2021 Signatory General Meeting (SGM) minutes

1371
(99.9%)

2
(0.1%)

266
(16.2%)

1639

Abstain % is calculated as number of abstain votes divided by total votes.

2021 election participation

Total 36.5% signatories participated in the 2021 voting.

Breakdown by signatory type Electors Votes Turnout (%)

Asset owner ballot

654

338

51.7%

Investment manager ballot

3361

1163

34.6%

Service provider ballot

481

138

28.7%

Total

4496

1639

36.5%

Signatory voting is closed

Signatories were invited to vote from 30 September until 26 November on the following elements of PRI governance set out in the table below.

 

Voting item Asset owners Investment managers Service providers
Vote for four asset owner representatives in the PRI Board Election
Vote for one investment manager representative in the PRI Board election

Vote to confirm the appointment of the auditor

Vote to receive the PRI Annual Report and Accounts

Vote to approve the Signatory General Meeting minutes

Voting was conducted via an independent voting provider Simply Voting which is a web-based online voting system. All votes are anonymous.

If you have any queries about the election and voting process, please contact governance@unpri.org.

Signatory rights and the PRI Board 

Nominating candidates for the board elections and electing PRI Board Directors are important signatory rights and responsibilities. The PRI encourages signatories to participate in the nomination and election process to maintain a vibrant and representative PRI Board. Learn more about your rights as a PRI signatory.

The PRI Board is collectively responsible for the long-term success of the PRI and in particular for: establishing the PRI’s mission, vision, and values; setting the strategy, risk appetite and structure; delegating the implementation of the strategy to the PRI Association Executive (the Executive); monitoring the Executive’s performance against the strategy; exercising accountability to signatories and being responsible to relevant stakeholders.

The board is composed of: one independent Chair (confirmed by a signatory vote) and ten Directors (seven elected by asset owner signatories, two by investment manager signatories and one by service provider signatories). The Chair and all elected Directors are the Statutory Members of the Company. There are two Permanent UN Advisors to the board, representatives from the PRI’s founding UN partners: UN Global Compact and UNEP Finance Initiative.

Current board Directors are all CEOs, CIOs, Board members, or report to ‘relevant officers’ of signatory organisations. Part of the role of the board is to be ambassadors for the PRI and for responsible investment. The PRI considers it is important to have high-level C-suite engagement and champions to help bring responsible investment into the mainstream. For information on the current board Directors, including Directors’ terms, see the table below. 

Current board directors

Category Director Signatory Signatory HQ country Term

Chair

Martin Skancke

Independent

N/A

2021-2023

Directors elected by asset owner signatories

Takeshi Kimura

Nippon Life

Japan

2021-2023

Angela Emslie*

HESTA

Australia

2019-2021

Eva Halvarsson

Second Swedish National Pension Fund (AP2)

Sweden

2020-2022

Sharon Hendricks*

CalSTRS

US

2019-2021

Renosi Mokate

Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF)

South Africa

2021-2023

Laetitia Tankwe*

Ircantec

France

2019-2021

Xander den Uyl*

ABP

Netherlands

2019-2021

Directors elected by investment manager signatories

Wendy Cromwell*

Wellington Management

US

2019-2021

Tycho Sneyers

LGT Capital Partners

UK

2021-2023

Director elected by service provider signatories

Michael Jantzi

Sustainalytics

Netherlands

2020-2022

End of term board directors 

Five board directors’ (denoted in table above with asterisk*) current terms end in December 2021. 

The following three directors have re-nominated for another three-year term. 

  1. Sharon Hendricks - Asset owner representative  
  2. Laetitia Tankwe - Asset owner representative  
  3. Wendy Cromwell - Investment manager representative 

For more information on our board members, biographies and board composition refer to PRI Board members.

Skills, experience, and diversity 

As part of the commitment to strengthen the rigour and accountability of the election process, the PRI is providing more guidance and information to candidates and signatories in advance of their vote. 

The board should have the appropriate balance of skills, diversity, experience, independence, and knowledge of the organisation to enable it to discharge its duties and responsibilities effectively. This necessary diversity encompasses a sufficient mix of relevant skills, competence, and diversity of perspectives. It may include but is not limited to: geographical diversity of signatory representation to bring regional knowledge and perspectives to the board; diversity of geographical origin, ethnicity, language and culture, and also gender diversity. 

The board needs to be appropriately representative of the diversity of the PRI signatories in order to generate effective debate and discussion around the key issues that the board considers, and to deliver the broadly-founded leadership that the initiative requires. The PRI is a global organisation, and aims for global representation on its board, particularly within the asset owner positions. 

The PRI Board is encouraging candidates: 

  • with governance skills and senior leadership experience; and 
  • with demonstrated leadership in responsible investment.

In addition to the above, for the asset owner positions, the PRI Board is encouraging candidates:

  • from asset owner signatories (with their HQ) in North America and Australasia.

Candidates are asked to elaborate, in their candidate statements, on their leadership and governance experience, and demonstrated leadership in responsible investment. This information – as well as information on the nominating signatory, the candidate biography and statement – will enable the signatory electorate to more easily compare the skills, experience and diversity of the respective candidates. 

Eligibility 

To be eligible to stand for the election, candidates must be a ‘relevant officer’, a person who is employed or otherwise serving as: 

(i) the Chief Executive Officer of a Signatory; or 

(ii) the Chief Investment Officer of a Signatory; or 

(iii) in the case of a Signatory that does not have the offices of Chief Executive Officer or Chief Investment Officer: the most senior investment professional of that Signatory; or 

(iv) a director serving on the main governing board (and not merely any subsidiary boards, subordinate boards or committees) of a Signatory; or 

(v) a trustee of a Signatory; or 

(vi) an executive employee of a Signatory in a role where his or her immediate line manager is one of the persons described in sub-paragraphs (i), (ii) or (iii) of this definition of Relevant Officer. 

(vii) a former relevant officer.

2021 PRI Board annual elections timetable

Date Action

7 June

Invitation for nominations from asset owner and investment manager candidates

27 August

Final day for nominations

23 September

Announcement of the election candidates at the Signatory General Meeting

30 September

Election voting opens

26 November

Election voting closes 17:00 (GMT)

3 December

Board announcement of the election results

1 Jan 2022

Start of term for the new Director

Director expectations 

Directors are nominated by a signatory organisation and elected by signatories, from a signatory category, but have a responsibility to fulfil their duties as an individual and in the best interests of the PRI as a whole.

Term 

The successful candidates in the annual election are elected for three-year terms and are expected to serve from 1 January 2022 to 31 December 2024. No Director may serve for more than three consecutive three year terms as an elected Director.

Time allocation 

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, all meetings are being held online via video conference until further notice. The expectation is that Directors will participate in every meeting. At the moment there are 3-5 agenda items per meeting and preparation is dependent on the Director and the respective agenda item. Directors are expected to dedicate additional reading and preparation time leading up to meetings.

Post-Covid, the expectation is that the board meetings will be a mixture of virtual and in person. The board is considering two annual in-person meetings, likely to be 1.5 days each, plus four additional virtual meetings. The time commitment is approximately 12-14 days including meetings, preparation and excluding travel. 

Board members are typically appointed to one or two board committees. The five committees (Finance, Audit and Risk; Governance; Human Resources and Remuneration; Policy; Signatory Status) facilitate the discussions and workings of the board and are critical to the effectiveness of the board. The workload of each committee is varied, but on average a committee will have three 1.5 hour conference call meetings per year. The expectation is that each committee member will participate in every respective committee meeting, with a requirement to participate in a majority of meetings of that committee in a calendar year.

Attendance at virtual and/or in-person planned and ad hoc board meetings, committee meetings, and conference calls will be recorded in the annual Signatory General Meeting papers and on the PRI website.

Expenses 

The PRI is a not-for-profit organisation and does not compensate Directors. The PRI will offer to make a contribution towards the travel expenses of Directors that attend in-person meetings.

Refer to following rules, policies and terms of reference: 

Further information

For more information on the role of the PRI Board, expectations of Directors, application process, and to arrange a 1-1 call to register your interest for future, email governance@unpri.org.