December 21, 2016

Boardroom publication seeks Mintz Group’s counsel on vetting directors

A publication with expertise in corporate governance sought the Mintz Group’s advice on best practices in vetting prospective board members.  The online newsletter Boardroom Insider, at, said the first step in vetting possible directors is to “put your HR staff to work on a proper background and reference check for new directors as you would for any other new top hire.”  The web article then quoted James Rowe, the firm’s Co-Managing Partner, as advising, “Check professional affiliations, ongoing employment, and other board involvements.  “What other business entities are they involved in, what is their work life, where is their income coming from, and what are their time commitments?”

The publication added:  “While the Mintz Group are pro gumshoes in digging out this background, Rowe suggests that smart use of the internet and determination can help any HR department properly vet a board prospect. ‘Look at news coverage, litigation, and regulatory issues.’” “Carefully checking education and criminal records to assure they match the vitae the candidate provides is a must also,” the article said.  “If your board prospect claims a degree from a college he only attended for a few quarters, this is the time to find out.

“Mintz suggests a winnowing process for such digging — basic background checks for initial prospects, a deeper dive into the background of finalists. Find out where these prospects lived and worked to guide your vetting — Mintz notes that much in the way of legal records is still inaccessible online, and may require a personal visit to local government offices (vetting overseas is even more likely to require site visits).”

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