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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Serving on corporate board while in Congress? That could end

WASHINGTON – The indictment of Rep. Chris Collins on insider trading charges is drawing new attention to the freedom members of Congress have to serve on corporate boards or to buy and sell stock in industries they’re responsible for overseeing. Collins, a New York Republican, has denied any wrongdoing stemming from his involvement with Innate Immunotherapeutics Limited, a biotechnology company based in Sydney, Australia. He was Innate’s largest shareholder, holding nearly 17 percent of its shares. He also was a member of the company’s board of directors – an arrangement that itself isn’t a violation of the law. Yet it’s a connection that can create the potential for conflicts of interest.

Investors push corporate boards to add women, people of color

Slowly but steadily, investors continue to let corporate boards know that “male, pale and stale” doesn’t cut it anymore. The small but growing number of shareholder votes on diversity proposals is on pace to match or exceed the record set last year, according to data compiled by ISS Analytics, which tracks proxies. Apple and Tyson Foods investors already rejected such proposals, and another eight are in the queue.