ESG and the Future of Corporate Governance | Women in the Boardroom

Recorded Webinar

ESG and the Future of Corporate Governance

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The demand has been steadily increasing for companies and their boards to not only take ESG considerations into account in their decision-making, but to make ESG a permanent part of corporate strategy, and to report accountability on their progress.  These changes are driven by the demands of major institutional shareholders and other stakeholders, as well as increasing regulation.  ESG is by definition multifaceted, and may mean different things to different companies based upon their industry, size, location, history, etc.  Our panel of experts will discuss the evolution of Board oversight of ESG and best practices in effective ESG governance structures.


Howard Brod Brownstein, Katayun Jaffari, Stephen A. Pike, Victoria Avara

Date & Time

April 27, 2022
12:00 PM ET


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About the Speakers

Howard Brod Brownstein

President, The Brownstein Corporation; Director, P&F Industries (NasdaqGS: PFIN), Merakey, NACD Philadelphia Chapter

Howard Brod Brownstein, CTP, is a nationally-known turnaround and restructuring professional, and regularly provides programs for Women in the Boardroom. He is President of Brownstein Corporation, which provides turnaround management and advisory services, as well as investment banking, fiduciary services, litigation consulting, investigations and valuation services. He regularly serves on the boards of directors of public and private companies, and currently serves on the boards of: P&F Industries (Nasdaq: PFIN) where he chairs the Nominating/Governance and Strategic Planning & Risk Assessment Committees, Renew Financial, where he serves as chair of the Risk Committee, and Merakey, a nonprofit with over 10,000 employees. He is a Certified Turnaround Professional, and also an NACD Board Leadership Fellow and Immediate Past President and Board Chair of the NACD Philadelphia Chapter. He has authored ninety articles and textbook chapters, is a Contributing Editor at two publications, and is a regular guest-lecturer at Harvard Business School, Wharton, NYU and elsewhere. He received JD and MBA degrees at Harvard, and B.S. (Wharton) and B.A. degrees from the University of Pennsylvania.

Katayun Jaffari

Chair, Corporate Governance & Securities, Cozen O'Connor

Ms. Jaffari is Chair of the Corporate Governance and Securities group at Cozen O’Connor.  Recognized as a leader in the fields of corporate governance and securities, Ms. Jaffari devotes her practice to advising boards of directors with respect to governance matters and handling complex securities transactions for businesses in a variety of industries. Advising clients in deals that have reached the multibillion-dollar range, Ms. Jaffari has broad experience in corporate finance, compliance, and internal investigations, representing special committees of public company boards. Her practice includes business counseling, capital-raising, and mergers and acquisitions. She currently serves, on a pro bono basis, as Special Corporate Counsel, on behalf of Cozen O’Connor, to DirectWomen, a nonprofit whose mission is to increase the number of women on corporate boards.

Ms. Jaffari has been named “Best of the Bar” and a “Woman of Distinction” by the Philadelphia Business Journal.  She was selected as the “Star Influencer” for SmartCEO’s Centers of Influence Awards.  Ms. Jaffari has been named a Pennsylvania “Super Lawyer” for securities and corporate finance, to SmartCEO’s Legal Elite as a go-to attorney for business legal advice, one of Philadelphia’s “40 Under 40” by Philadelphia Business Journal, and one of Pennsylvania’s “Lawyers on the Fast Track” by American Lawyer Media.  The Philadelphia Bar Association’s Business Law Section honored her with the Committee of the Year Award and Chair of the Year Award.  Ms. Jaffari also is the recipient of the Adjunct Teaching Award for Excellence in the Classroom, Legal Studies, Fox School of Business at Temple University.

Stephen A. Pike

Business Law and ESG Partne, Gowling WLG

A senior lawyer and legal advisor to global and Canadian businesses. He advises on corporate law and corporate governance; sustainability, ESG (Environmental Social and Governance), and CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility) issues including modern slavery, forced labour, human trafficking, and child labour in supply chains, as well as M&A; risk management and product-related issues (including distribution, licensing, advertising, manufacturing, regulatory and product liability).

An advisor to American and global corporations and investors making acquisitions in Canada, setting up subsidiaries and new operations in Canada, and bringing their products into the Canadian market.

Victoria Avara

ESG Equity Research Analyst, Brown Advisory

Victoria joined Brown Advisory’s Equity Research team in 2019 focusing on ESG research and sustainable investing priorities. Victoria works broadly with the equity investment team to leverage ESG insights as a component of Brown Advisory’s bottom-up due diligence. Victoria joined Brown Advisory in 2016, serving as the firm’s Senior Equity Compensation Specialist. Prior to joining the firm, Victoria worked as a Senior Audit Accountant at SC&H Group Inc. in Sparks, Maryland.

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