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Gratitude & Good Governance

Gratitude & Good Governance

Today we received a letter from a shareholder in New York City that was deeply touching in its simplicity, clarity, and grace.  It expressed thanks for our efforts to improve Intel’s corporate governance.

Too infrequently do folks pause to recognize and thank others (especially those we don’t already know, as this person did).  I thank him for writing, and encourage readers to think of someone in your life – perhaps one who quietly perseveres without much recognition – and reach out to them in some way.

I suggest a note that is written or typed by hand – something the person can hold, carry, and revisit.  Even if you never find out how much it meant, rest assured you will make a difference… and will feel better in doing it!  

For thoughts about writing personal notes, visit: Heartspoken Note Writing and: Heartspoken’s Facebook Notes page.

Here’s that letter from NYC…   or, if you’d rather, read a PDF of the original letter 

May 3, 2015

Dear (Investor Voice):

Please know that I voted for your Intel shareholder proposal regarding simple majority voting.  I feel it is important to express my gratitude and support to people who are concerned about capitalism with a conscience.  I urge you to continue your work.

Please know that I also own shares in the corporations listed below.  If you have proposals with any of these, then alert me so that I know to support them.

  • Altria
  • AT&T
  • General Electric
  • GlaxoSmithKline PLC
  • Home Depot Inc
  • Johnson and Johnson
  • Kraft Foods
  • Mondelez International Inc.
  • Nokia Corp. Spon.
  • Omnicom Group Com.
  • Philip Morris Int’l Inc.
  • Procter & Gamble


See the original letter 

  1. Seattle, Thursday 5/7/2015

    Dear Mr. Z,

    Thank you for your wonderful letter of May 3rd which arrived today – I have scanned it and sent a copy to Dr. R & Ms. G.

    I was quite moved by your expression of thanks; in fact, it prompted me to write something for our website which you may view at:

    I hope you will take from this how deeply I appreciated your message.

    Other Shareholder Proposals

    Investor Voice does not currently have shareholder proposals at any of the other companies that you listed. However, there are several excellent resources for shareholder-sponsored proposals available.

    (1) One is the Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, ICCR (the folks who literally created the South African divestiture movement some 50 years ago). A list of the proposals that ICCR members have filed can be obtained at:

    (2) Ceres has a superb listing of environmentally-related proposals on their website:

    (3) The Investor Environmental Health Network offers a third excellent grouping:

    In closing

    While there are good groups besides these three who file important proposals, this trio is a superb place to start.

    Investor Voice works closely with each of these organizations, and I feel safe in suggesting that if you see a shareholder proposal listed on any of the three you may feel perfectly fine voting FOR it.

    Mr. Z, I wish to again thank you for the generosity of spirit which compelled you to write. I feel humbled and honored and glad to know that we have a friend in New York City.

    Sincerely, . . . Bruce Herbert

  2. May 7, 2015

    Dear Mr. Herbert:

    Well, you certainly gave me a very unexpected reason to be satisfied with myself for staying up so late when I should have been asleep two hours ago.

    Thank you once again for your work, for your reply, for the information you’ve provided and for kindly showcasing my simple letter. Don’t be humble, be proud of the work that you do. If these corporations are people, don’t people have consciences? That’s what you are, the critical conscience.

    I shall continue to write letters as I have. You should know that I had to contact Kraft and AT&T by regular post to request the names of the shareholders who submitted proposals.

    My very, very best.

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