ABA Launches Task Force on Corporate Monitors

The American Bar Association’s (ABA) has created a Task Force on Corporate Monitors.

The task force will be chaired by Ronald Goldstock, a Commissioner with the Waterfront Commission of New York Harbor, a faculty member at NYU, Columbia and Cornell Law Schools and an independent private sector inspector general.

In addition to Goldstock, task force members include U.S. District Court Judge Barbara Jones, Mary Jo White, a partner at Debevoise in New York, John Hanson, a retired FBI Agent and corporate monitor, Deborah Rhodes, a former Assistant U.S. Attorney in San Diego, Ronald Aborn, a partner at Constantine Cannon in New York, and Gerald Coyne, a deputy Attorney General in Rhode Island.

Larry Thompson, general counsel at Pepsico, will be a special adviser to the task force.

The task force will set standards for corporate monitors.

Possible subject areas for the task force include how the monitor is chosen, the scope of the monitor’s work, ethical considerations of the monitor, how the monitor is paid – how much and by whom, if there are disputes how they are resolved, and oversight of the monitor.

Goldstock said that interested parties like the Department of Justice or the Association of Corporate Counsel may appoint liaisons to the task force.

Goldstock estimated that the work of the task force would take about two years, and that it would probably take another year or so for the task force’s recommendations to make their way through the ABA.

Goldstock says there are many more monitors appointed by state and federal regulatory agencies than by the Department of Justice every year.

“Just here in New York there are probably more regulatory monitors appointed than by the Department of Justice,” Goldstock said.

“And the scope of monitoring through administrative bodies tends to be much greater than it would be through deferred prosecution agreements at the federal level.”

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