Directors' Institute Now Hosted by University of Maryland's Business School

Sep 29, 2009, 10:15 ET from University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business

Smith School to Offer Program for Corporate Board Directors in Washington, D.C.

COLLEGE PARK, Md., Sept. 29 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business will offer the Directors' Institute, an intensive two-day program to be held annually to address critical issues facing corporate boards. Stephen Wallenstein joined the Smith School to lead the institute. The inaugural program will be held April 7-9, 2010 in Washington, D.C. and is designed for board chairs, corporate directors and senior executive officers of publicly traded companies to receive instruction and engage with each other to develop best boardroom practices. The institute will be part of the new Center for Financial Policy.

"In this new era of increased scrutiny, it is so important that corporate boards have the support and education to provide principled leadership," said G. "Anand" Anandalingam, dean of the Robert H. Smith School of Business. "We are pleased we can offer this in-depth examination of corporate governance in the nation's capital with Steve Wallenstein, who is a recognized leader in providing this instruction."

Held at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C., the Directors' Institute addresses the corporate governance challenges facing directors today. April 2010 program topics include executive compensation in an economic downturn, the board's role in strategic planning, risk management in highly uncertain times, key information directors must know about financial reporting, and responding to shareholder activism. Sessions will be led by world-leading faculty, influential board directors, top executives, government regulators, and legal and financial services experts.

"We will examine the top issues facing boards today and help directors establish a framework for making informed decisions with sound judgment," said Wallenstein, director of the Directors' Institute. "Not only do participants get to learn best practices from top experts, they also have the invaluable opportunity to interact with each other. We're privileged to be able to hold this in Washington, D.C., with access to financial policy and corporate governance leaders as Wall Street moves to K Street."

In addition to heading up the Directors' Institute, Wallenstein is also a senior fellow of finance at the Smith School. He is a recognized expert in corporate governance and best practices for publicly traded companies in the U.S. and abroad. Previously he was a faculty member at the Fuqua School of Business and Duke Law School where he founded the Duke Directors' Education Institute (DEI) in 2002 and established the Duke Global Capital Markets Center (GCMC) in 1998, a collaborative venture between Fuqua and Duke Law.

Wallenstein is an expert on emerging markets, having spent 15 years as senior counsel and senior investment officer at the International Finance Corporation in Washington, D.C., where he was responsible for structuring and negotiating international finance, privatizations and capital markets transactions in Eastern Europe, Latin America and Asia. His 15-year teaching career also includes stints at American University, University of Denver College of Law, and in Brazil at the Catholic University and Fundacao Getulio Vargas in Rio de Janeiro.

He was a member of the board of directors of nickel giant CVRD Inco of Canada -- now part of Vale do Rio Doce of Brazil, the world's second largest mining company -- and a member of the audit committee from 2006-2007. Wallenstein was also a corporate governance advisor to the management committee of Vale from 2007-2009.

More information about the Smith School's Directors' Institute can be found online at

About the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business

The Robert H. Smith School of Business is an internationally recognized leader in management education and research. One of 13 colleges and schools at the University of Maryland, College Park, the Smith School offers undergraduate, full-time and part-time MBA, executive MBA, MS, PhD, and executive education programs, as well as outreach services to the corporate community. The school offers its degree, custom and certification programs in learning locations in North America and Asia.

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SOURCE University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business