Fiscal 2003 annual acknowledgement.

Author:Taggart, David M.
Position:Financial executives research foundation - Editorial
 
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The Foundation's Vision to be The Source for Financial Solutions

To identify, develop and provide leading edge content through objective research to the FEI member and Foundation suppoter in a format that is accessible and practical.

from the Chairman

Fiscal 2003 brought about historic changes to the business landscape in response to the high-profile corporate scandals from a year earlier. In this demanding business environment with expanding and changing regulation, the Financial Executive Research Foundation (FERF) was a leading source of content for FEI members. Through studies, newsletters and articles in Financial Executive magazine, FERF delivered information that addressed the issues facing all financial executives.

The content from FERF was relevant and timely--reflecting peer practices that strive to facilitate prompt and ethical implementation of rapidly changing regulations. In fact, one of our best-selling studies, Valuing Employee Stock Options; A Comparison of Alternative Models, was used by the FASB, the SEC and Canadian Accounting Standards Board, in their stock options valuation debates. Our information stands apart and does not compete with research from the Big 4 public accounting firms since it is gathered in partnership with our members--providing a unique perspective on financial topics. This partnership was further strengthened with the recent launch of our Financial Executives List Exchange service (FELIX) that will allow members to get quick answers to financial questions from their peers.

When the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 was enacted, FERF prepared a financial executive checklist to assist its members with compliance. Similarly, checklists were prepared to outline key corporate governance proposals from the NYSE and NASDAQ. In response to increased regulation, FERF authored Best Practices for Sarbanes-Oxley Implementation, A Review of 2002 MD&A Disclosures and What is COSO? Defining the Alliance That Defined Internal Control, which provided detailed guidance by highlighting practices and methods used by many of the membership's leading companies. FERF also considered the impact on private companies by providing a boilerplate Audit Committee Charter--For Privately-Held Companies on its website. Our commitment to private companies was further emphasized when we developed the content for the 1st annual conference of FEI's Committee on Private Companies. This relationship will continue in 2004 as we assist in the development of the 2nd annual conference.

Other FERF studies such as Integrity-Based Financial Leadership and Ethical Behavior, Effective Implementation of Cross-Border Mergers and Acquisitions, Benchmarking the Planning Process and Commercial Insurance--Strategies for Renewal sought to identify practical alternatives for specific key topics. FERF's research also encompassed findings from full-length financial executive surveys, 2003 Protecting Value Study: Managing Business Risks and Technology Survey for Financial Executives.

Fiscal 2003 also marked the debut of FERF's Topical Alert, brief articles that provide updates and suggestions on dealing with more specific or technical subjects such as 1st Quarter Update on Qualified Retirement Plans for Benefit Plan Sponsors or 2002 Year-End Tax Planning Strategies.

FERF produces a great deal of the educational content supplied to FEI members electronically, along with its five e-newsletters: Global Update, Treasurers, Private Net, TechKnowledge and What's New in Research. As with the research studies, FERF seeks the guidance of the membership and the technical committees to drive the topics researched. We plan to further expand this research guidance this year.

Another fully electronic service, Ask FERF, continued its expansion during the fiscal year. The online service allows members and donors to ask our researchers questions on a wide range of topics and guarantees a tailored response within 48 hours. This service will be integrated with FELIX, a moderated email-based list exchange to be administered by FERF. Our electronic library, The Knowledge Center, provides a catalog of references obtained from our ongoing research. Additional research findings from FERF's studies and member interviews will continue to be highlighted in every issue of Financial Executive magazine.

Through regular attendance at area leadership, chapter and committee meetings, FERF continued its ongoing dialogue with the membership and provided periodic updates on our research. We look forward to even more interaction this year to ensure our research efforts are relevant and on-target.

Our research is supported solely by fundraising--no subsidies are received from FEI member dues. Though much of this research has been free for the past year to FEI members regardless of whether or not they supported FERF, as of July 1, 2003, we moved to a model where products must be purchased by non-donors. With a nationwide 12% decrease in corporate giving to charities, FERF is in a challenging funding position with our significant dependence on corporate contributions.

In order to maintain its level of annual research funding, FERF has implemented a more diverse and focused fundraising strategy. As you can see from the 678% increase in new company gifts, 118% increase in individual gifts, and a 20% increase in chapter giving, we have broadened our appeals to balance the large dependence on corporate giving. FERF's new focus is to increase awareness of FEI members and chapters, as well as smaller corporations and businesses.

It has been an honor to serve as chairman of the FERF's board of trustees. I look forward to continuing to work with my fellow trustees, with Maria Markowitz Bace, the Foundation's FVP and COO, and with her hardworking staff. I would like to thank our retiring trustees Donella Rapier of the Harvard Business School and Dr. Lawrence F. Davenport of Hale House Center, Inc. for their many years of service and to welcome incoming trustees, Irina Simmons, Vice President and Treasurer of EMC Corporation, and Marsha Hunt, Vice President and Controller of Cummins, Inc.

Last, but not least, thank you to the financial supporters of FERF. Your contribution makes our success possible.

FY 2003 board of Trustees

Chairman

David M. Taggart

Vice President & Treasurer

The Coca-Cola Company

Vice Chairman & Treasurer

Katharine B. Stevenson

Treasurer

Nortel Networks Corporation

Raj Aggarwal

Firestone Chair in Finance/Business

Kent State University

Graduate School of Management

Scott M. Boggs

Retired

Corporate Vice President, Finance

Microsoft Corporation

George Boyadjis

Executive VP, CFO, and Treasurer

American TeleCare, Inc.

Lawrence F. Davenport

Executive Director & CEO

Hale House Center, Inc.

Joan E. Netzel

First Vice President, Audit Services

SunTrust Banks, Inc.

Donella M. Rapier

Associate Dean of External Relations & CFO

Harvard Business School

Norman N.Strauss

Ernst & Young Executive Professor in Residence

Baruch College

The City University of New York

Ex-Officio Trustee

FEI Vice Chairman

H. Stephen Grace, Jr.

President

H.S. Grace & Company, Inc.

our Contributors

The Financial Executives Research Foundation extends its gratitude to the contributors 2002-2003 campaign. Supporters included public and private corporations, FEI chapters and individuals from both the active and retired membership ranks. We consider every donor our partner in providing timely, practical research to enhance the financial management profession.

Presidents' Circle

(Patron)

$10,000 and up

Abbott Laboratories

American International Group, Inc.

Bristol-Myers Squibb Company

Microsoft Corporation

President's Circle

(Investor)

$5,000-$9,999

Aluminum Company of America

Anonymous

AOL Time Warner

AT&T

Baxter International, Inc.

Citigroup

Coming Incorporated

CVS Corporation

Daimler Chrysler Corporation

Dell USA LP

Dow Chemical Company

Duke Energy Corporation

E.I.du Pont de Nemours & Company

Eli Lilly & Company

Exxon Mobil Corporation

General Electric Company, Inc.

General Motors

Hewlett-Packard Company

IBM Corporation

J.P. Morgan Chase & Co.,

Incorporated

Johnson & Johnson

Lockheed Martin Corporation

Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc.

Medtronic, Inc.

Merck & Company, Incorporated

Motorola, Inc.

Pfizer Inc.

Procter & Gamble

Tenneco Automotive, Inc.

United Technologies Corporation

Verizon

Wyeth

Individual

David M.Taggart

Leadership

$1000 to $4999

Corporate

3M

3M Canada Company

A&E Television Networks

Adaptec, Inc.

Aetna, Inc.

Air Products & Chemicals, Inc.

Airborne Express

Alltel Corporation

American Financial Corporation

Anadarko Petroleum Corporation

Automatic Data Processing Inc.

Aventis

Bank of Montreal

Bank One Corporation

Barnes Group, Inc.

Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation

Canada Life Assurance Company

Cargill Incorporated

Carlson Companies, Inc.

Caterpillar, Inc.

Ceridian

Chevron Texaco

CNF Transportation Inc.

Coachmen Industries, Inc.

Colgate-Palmolive Company

Comcast Corp.

Computer Sciences Corporation

ConocoPhillips

Cooper Industries, Inc.

Cooper Tire & Rubber Company

Crane Company

Crown Central Petroleum Corporation

Cubic Corporation

Datascope Corporation

Deloitte & Touche LLP

Deluxe Corporation

Detroit Edison Company

Eaton Corporation

Edward Jones

Enbridge, Inc.

EnCana Corporation

Energen Corporation

Engelhard Corp.

Equifax Inc.

Ernst & Young

Estee Lauder Companies, Inc.

Ethyl Corporation

Federal Signal Corporation

Financial Executives International

Florida Power & Light Company

Four Seasons Hotels and Resorts

Genencor International Incorporated

Georgia-Pacific Corporation

Gillette Company

Granite Construction Inc.

Halliburton Company

Hallmark Cards, Inc.

Hershey Foods Corporation

Hunter Douglas Inc.

Illinois Tool Works, Inc.

Inco Limited

International Flavors & Fragrances Inc.

Interprovincial Pipe Line Inc.

Johnson Controls, Inc.

Jones Management Services, LLC

KeyCorp

LaBranche & Co. Inc.

Lehigh Cement Company

Lexmark International, Inc.

Life Care Services LLC

Louisville...

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