1-Hour Program

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Corporations have historically engaged in political and lobbying activity within a well-defined compliance framework, often with an either implicit or explicit understanding that such activities support the corporation’s business purpose and “core values.” However, recent elections, proposed federal agency rules, state and federal legislation and resulting litigation have placed corporate political activity in a compliance crossfire. Corporations face increased pressure to take positions on controversial social and political issues. Employees, shareholders, third party advocates and the public at large are calling on corporations to better define their values, increase transparency, and clarify positions in regard to social and political issues.  

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), with roots in the consumer protection movement, has found new expression in Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) standards and policies, a drive for increased Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), and a reaction against these programs and initiatives as “Woke Capitalism.” Faculty will explore these developments as they pertain to corporate political activity compliance and discuss ways to minimize reputational and legal risks while protecting shareholder value in the current crossfire.  They will discuss:

  • Shareholder and third party proposals, media coverage, and other public focus on corporate political activity – 10 minutes
  • Federal and state-level attempts to regulate social and political activity, including by the Securities Exchange Commission, the Accountable Capitalism Act, and in Florida and other states – 10 minutes
  • What we can learn from corporations’ reactions to ESG issues and recent election controversies – 10 minutes 
  • Efforts to better define the intersection of CSR, ESG, and DEI by the American Bar Association (ABA) and others – 10 minutes 
  • The role of public-facing corporate representatives: CEO, Board of Directors, Government Affairs and compliance teams – 10 minutes
  • Developing updated policies and procedures related to political and lobbying activity – 10 minutes 


Who Should Attend:  In-house counsel, law firms, corporate compliance officers, corporate social responsibility (CSR) professionals, environmental, social and governance (ESG) professionals, and diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) professionals

Program Level: Update

Prerequisites: None

Advanced Preparation: None





Jason D. Kaune

Nielsen Merksamer Parrinello Gross & Leoni LLP


Evann Whitelam

Nielsen Merksamer Parrinello Gross & Leoni LLP


Credit Details

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