Francis H. Byrd is Managing Director and Co-Leader for the Corporate Governance Advisory Practice at The Altman Group. In this role, Mr. Byrd provides strategic advice on corporate governance issues to boards of directors and senior executive management of publicly traded companies. Prior to joining The Altman Group, Mr. Byrd was Vice President/Corporate Governance Specialist, a member of the fundamental credit rating team at Moody’s Investors Service.
During his four-year tenure with Moody’s Investors Service, Mr. Byrd authored over 90 published corporate governance assessments and sector commentaries. As part of the credit rating process, Mr. Byrd researched the governance attributes and practices of hundreds of Fortune 1000 companies, across a broad spectrum of industries and sectors, focusing on the relationship between governance, credit and risk.
Prior to joining Moody’s, in November 2003, Mr. Byrd served as Special Assistant for Pension Policy in the New York City Comptroller’s Office, where he helped to develop the governance focus list and manage shareowner initiatives programs for the $105 billion New York City retirement systems, a global leader in the field of institutional investor activism.
Mr. Byrd, in 2002, co-authored the New York City Retirement Systems’ shareholder proposal calling on companies to establish an office of the board of directors to develop a channel of communication between institutional shareholders and the independent directors of publicly-traded companies. This non-binding proposal helped form the basis of the New York Stock Exchange mandate requiring companies to disclose, in their proxy statements, their mechanism for providing communications between shareholders and independent directors.
Preceding his government service, Mr. Byrd was a Senior Investor Relations Analyst with Georges on Shareholder Communications, a proxy solicitation and investor relations firm advising Fortune 500 companies.
Throughout his fifteen-year career, Mr. Byrd has lectured internationally on corporate governance issues with c-suite level executives, corporate directors, academics and governance experts at university seminars, corporate governance conferences and professional associations.