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Jan 30, 2018

CalSTRS’ corporate governance head to retire

Anne Sheehan was first person to hold role at the US pension fund

Anne Sheehan, director of corporate governance for CalSTRS – and the first person to hold that position at the pension fund – announced earlier this month that she will retire at the end of March after 10 years leading the division.

Sheehan’s mission, which she took up in 2008 in the shadow of Lehman Brothers’ collapse, is to protect and bolster shareholder rights as a result of the financial crisis. One of her first steps in that direction was to set up a financial reform working group with other pension funds that worked to secure corporate governance process changes to the Dodd-Frank Act, according to CalSTRS.

During her tenure, she spent time as board chair of the Council of Institutional Investors and served on the boards of the International Corporate Governance Network and the Nasdaq Listing Council.

At present, she is chair of the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee, which was created to promote investor confidence and to advise the commission on regulatory priorities, the regulation of securities products, trading strategies, fee structures, the effectiveness of disclosure and initiatives to protect investor interests.

A spokesperson says CalSTRS is not using an executive search firm to look for Sheehan’s replacement, and has no further details on a successor.

‘Anne has been my most unconventional, best hire,’ CalSTRS chief investment officer Christopher Ailman says in a statement. ‘She’s conversant in the language of the regulatory, legal, corporate and investment worlds. Her networking and leadership abilities know no bounds. Anne relates well no matter what an individual’s ideology is – labor versus management, conservative versus liberal, Democrat versus Republican – whatever it takes to get the job done.’

‘It has been an honor and a privilege to advance the fight for stronger shareholder rights on behalf of California’s teachers,’ Sheehan says in a statement, pointing to her efforts in the areas of board diversity, majority voting and executive compensation.