Apr 2 2014, 4:10pm CDT | by PR.com
New York, NY, April 02, 2014 --(PR.com)-- Sarah Hlavinka McConnell, Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Corporate Secretary for ABM Industries Incorporated, attended the DirectWomen Board Institute from January 22-24 in New York City. DirectWomen, an organization formed to position women lawyers to serve on boards of public companies, selects a group of qualified women lawyers from a competitive pool of applicants across the country to participate in the three-day program.
At the DirectWomen Board Institute McConnell attended informational sessions on key issues facing current and future corporate directors and had the opportunity to interact with Institute alumnae and past honorees. The Institute was co-chaired by Professor Hillary A. Sale, Walter D. Coles Professor of Law and Professor of Management at Washington University in St. Louis and Professor Lisa M. Fairfax, Leroy Sorenson Merrifield Research Professor of Law at the George Washington University Law School. Institute faculty featured leading experts on corporate governance as well as experienced directors and officers of large public companies. Speakers covered topics such as the role and work of nominating board members, the evolving nature of shareholder relations, the strategic role of audit committees and the role of executive search firms in board searches.
At ABM Industries, McConnell is the key liaison between the Board of Directors and Management, shepherding all corporate governance and legal matters for the Company and attending all Board, Governance and Audit Committee meetings. She also manages the Company’s Enterprise Risk Management function and is the Chief Compliance Officer. Prior to joining ABM, McConnell served as Vice President, Assistant General Counsel and Secretary for Fisher Scientific International. McConnell’s extensive experience as a seasoned advisor and business person also includes serving as: General Counsel for Benchmark Electronics; Associate General Counsel and Assistant Secretary for Hewlett Packard Company where she was the legal advisor for HP’s $6 billion server division; and Senior Counsel at Cooper Industries where she counseled multi-billion dollar business units on a variety of commercially oriented legal issues including material acquisitions and divestitures. She began her legal career as an Associate with Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP. McConnell received her law degree from the University of Texas Law School where she was a Teaching Quizmaster, and graduated magna cum laude from Texas A&M University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in history and a minor in Spanish. She currently serves on the Texas A&M University College of Liberal Arts Development Council.
“I am honored to be selected to attend the DirectWomen Board Institute,” said McConnell. “I was able to interact with women in my field, learn about the issues facing corporate directors and gain valuable insight into the process of nominating board members.”
The mission of DirectWomen is to increase the representation of women on corporate boards. DirectWomen identifies, develops and supports a growing group of accomplished women attorneys who have the experience, independence and diversity required for good corporate governance. Partners of the program include Catalyst, the leading nonprofit membership organization expanding opportunities for women in business, and the American Bar Association's Commission on Women in the Profession.
Other attendees of the 2014 DirectWomen Board Institute:
Susan L. Blount
Executive Vice President and General Counsel at Prudential Financial, Inc.
Marcy S. Cohen
Managing Director, General Counsel and Head of Legal for the Americas, ING Financial Holdings Corporation
Sheri H. Edison
Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of Bemis Company, Inc.
Senior Vice President, Chief Legal Officer and Secretary for Hasbro, Inc.
Michelle A. Friel
Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary for YRC Worldwide Inc.
Kayla J. Gillan
Principal, Leader of Investor Resource Institute, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP
Marie Oh Huber
Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of Agilent Technologies, Inc.
Sheri L. Mossbeck
Vice President and Treasurer of Leggett & Platt, Inc.
Amanda M. McMillian
Vice President, Deputy General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Chief Compliance Officer for Anadarko Petroleum Corporation
Kim M. Rivera
Chief Legal Officer and Corporate Secretary for DaVita HealthCare Partners
Former Deputy Mayor for Legal Affairs and Counsel to the Mayor, Mayor’s Office, The City of New York
Jeanne M. Rosendale
Former Executive Vice President, General Counsel, Chief Compliance Officer and Head of Human Resources for Muriel Siebert Co., Inc.
Margaret K. Seif
Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary of Analog Devices, Inc.
Partner, Pepper Hamilton LLP - Antitrust Practice
Allison Leopold Tilley
Board Member and Partner at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman, Corporate & Securities – Technology practice
Senior Vice President, General Counsel, Corporate Secretary and Chief Compliance Officer for Choice Hotels International, Inc.
Loria Baskerville Yeadon
Executive Vice President of Intellectual Ventures Management, LLC
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