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Chief Executive: "Why Retail Boards Are Choosing Less Risky CEOs"

10/20/2014

Chief Executive: "Why Retail Boards Are Choosing Less Risky CEOs"

. . . The latest case in point is J.C. Penney. The big box retailer turned to traditional-retailing veteran Marvin Ellison—the executive vice president of U.S. stores for Home Depot—as its next CEO. After a long transition, Ellison will replace current Penney CEO Myron Ullman, who has been trying without success to stabilize and revitalize the iconic soft-goods retailer during his second tenure as chief.

“The selection of Marvin Ellison builds upon Penney’s need for operating effectiveness and Ellison’s record of operating” at Home Depot, said Joseph Pastore Jr., a Pace University business professor. “It also re-affirms the fundamental principle for performance in mass retailing: low margins/high volume based upon cost-effective, low price, nationally branded product offerings.”

Read more:  http://chiefexecutive.net/retail-boards-choosing-less-risky-ceos

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FASB FORUM ON FINANCIAL DISCLOSURES

10/17/2014

The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) will hold a forum to discuss financial disclosures on December 1, 2014. Pace University will be hosting the event at the Schimmel Center in New York City. The forum is designed to provide an opportunity to engage in a constructive dialogue regarding the current state of financial disclosure and some of the current efforts that are underway to improve the effectiveness of such disclosures.

Details on the event are as follows:

Monday, December 1, 2014
Forum on Financial Disclosure

Time: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Location: Schimmel Center at Pace University, 3 Spruce Street, New York, NY 10038

The forum will be open to observation by the public and will be recorded for replay at www.fasb.org.

Questions regarding the forum can be directed to Nick Cappiello at ntcappiello@fasb.org.

To observe the meeting, you must either present a Pace University student or faculty ID or register.

For more information, visit the Forum on Financial Disclosure Registration Page.

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Fox News: "Old rivalries keeping Turkey on sidelines of Syria fight, analysts say"

10/17/2014

Fox News: "Old rivalries keeping Turkey on sidelines of Syria fight, analysts say"

. . .  Animosity between Turkey and Syria goes back decades. In 1939, land belonging to Syria in the northwest along the Mediterranean, then called the Sanjak of Alexandretta, was annexed by Turkey and became its southernmost province, Hatay. As a result of acquiring Hatay Province, Turkey remained neutral in World War II. Syria has never recognized the action and has been an enemy of Turkey ever since. 

"The Assad family has had a personal vendetta against Turkey," Dr. Michael Izady, professor of Middle Eastern and Western history at Pace University, said. 

Part of the Assad family's payback was supporting PKK in their guerrilla war against Turkey starting in 1984. Bashar Assad's father, Hafez, allowed them into Syria and provided them refuge for years -- as they fought for autonomous Kurdistan for Turkey's Kurds. 

Here's where it gets interesting: 

PKK's Syrian affiliate is known as the Democratic Union Party, or PYD. The Popular Protection Unit, or YPG, is PYD's military wing. YPG now composes the bulk of the fighters in Kobani. 

Sherkoh Abbas, chairman of Kurdistan National Assembly - Syria, says this gives Turkey little reason to step up to the plate for the Kurds in Kobani. 

"Most PYD and YPG are working on behalf of Assad to manage the Kurds," he said. "Iran and Russia are tied to the groups as well." 

PKK has made plenty of enemies. According to some US officials, PKK controls the drug routes through Iran and Turkey and maintains ties with Iran's proxy, Hezbollah, in addition to Assad. 

"PKK has committed great acts of terrorism," Izady said. "They are run like the mafia, they are not a national liberation Army -- they are truly horrific."   

Read more: http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2014/10/16/old-rivalries-keeping-turkey-on-sidelines-syria-fight-analysts-say/

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The Atlantic: "The Cost of China's Determination in Hong Kong"

10/16/2014

The Atlantic: "The Cost of China's Determination in Hong Kong"

. . . "'One country, two systems' was actually a compromise between China and Hong Kong's business elite, as it allowed this elite to continue operating for 50 years," said Joseph Lee, a professor of history at Pace University in New York. "But the compromise reflected short-term thinking, and paid no attention to the needs of the newer generation."

Read more: http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2014/10/the-cost-of-chinas-determination-in-hong-kong/381519/

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Commercial Observer: "The Plan: 140 William Street"

10/15/2014

Commercial Observer: "The Plan: 140 William Street"

At the start of the current school year last month, Pace University unveiled the second phase of its renovation project at Pace Performing Arts’ home at 140 William Street.

Plans included the conversion of the seventh floor and penthouse into a design studio, sound studio, mechanical and electrical equipment rooms and a rooftop terrace for special events.

Read more: http://commercialobserver.com/2014/10/the-plan-140-william-street/

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InsideCounsel: "AIG shareholders press on with their lawsuit"

10/15/2014

InsideCounsel: "AIG shareholders press on with their lawsuit"

. . . there are some pluses with the evidence being presented during the trial. “I’m pleased to see it being aired out under oath,” John J. (Jack) James, chairman emeritus of Pace University’s Center for Global Governance, Reporting, and Regulation, told InsideCounsel in a recent interview. “It will get the conspiracy theorists to shut up for a while.”

He also points out that the list of witnesses includes the people “who were in charge.”

The case provides lessons to boards at other companies, as well, he said.

“AIG’s board was asleep at the switch,” James said.

The company not only has to follow the law, but internal governance is probably even more important than external governance, he adds.

Will the AIG case end up being a wake-up call for other companies? Overall, many observers are now watching how the case will be settled. The parties even may be able to reach a settlement before a verdict.

With cases such as Enron out there as well, general counsel and compliance officials need to be ready to speak up if issues arise.

From the point of view of the general counsel, where there are concerns, sometimes general counsel needs to work with other top officials. James explained that, in most companies, the chief legal officer is in contact with the chief risk officer and the chief corporate officer, and maybe even the top internal auditor if issues are pending. The three or even four of them can get together and go to see the CEO and tell him/her, “Hey boss. We would like to discuss something with you.”

Remember, “There is safety in numbers,” James advises. Things may be going on that are legal but not ethical, he adds.

In addition, depending on the role of the CEO in the situation, they could also go to talk to the audit committee of the board or the board chairman. After all, if the general counsel is an officer of the corporation, she/he likely took an oath to protect shareholders, and needs to come forward if there is something not in the interest of the shareholders, James said.

Read more: http://www.insidecounsel.com/2014/10/14/aig-shareholders-press-on-with-their-lawsuit

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The Hill's Congress Blog: "Question of ethnicity in the Middle East"

10/09/2014

The Hill's Congress Blog: "Question of ethnicity in the Middle East"

There is a glaring discrepancy in Western sources when identifying various ethnic groups in the Middle East, writes Michael Izady, a professor of Middle Eastern and Western history at Pace University in New York. The lingering and often imperceptible, Orientalist ideas have further discouraged new thinking even when the old ideas have been manifestly and visibly wrong. This is exacerbated by the confusion by which the local states identify the ethnicity of their own citizens, which is often marred by political motivation and expediency. In the meantime, the Western sources--media and in fact, academia--have enthusiastically supported this idealistic simplification and now find it perplexing why there are so many civil wars and discord between the supposedly same ethnic group, e.g., the Arabs, from Basra to Banias, from Manama to Morocco.

Read more: http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/foreign-policy/220057-question-of-ethnicity-in-the-middle-east

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Leslie F. Seidman to speak at the AICPA Women’s Global Leadership Summit in Washington, October 23-24

10/08/2014

Leslie F. Seidman to speak at the AICPA Women’s Global Leadership Summit in Washington, October 23-24

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Leslie F. Seidman, Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in Financial Reporting at Pace University and former Chairman of the Financial Accounting Standards Board, to speak at the AICPA Women’s Global Leadership Summit in Washington, October 23-24

Seidman to discuss her journey to becoming the first female leader of the FASB as part of a panel discussion on “Women Trailblazers”

New York, NY – October 8, 2014 -- Leslie F. Seidman, a recognized expert in accounting, will speak on Thursday, October 23 at the Women’s Global Leadership Summit hosted by the American Institute of CPAs, the world’s largest member organization representing the accounting profession.

Seidman will discuss her journey to becoming the first female Chairman of the FASB as part of a panel discussion on “Women Trailblazers: Path to Being the First.”

The AICPA Women’s Global Leadership Summit is inspirational and unique — offering perspectives from women finance and accounting leaders in firms, business and industry, government, not-for-profits and academia.  Attendees will gain direct access to new ideas, prominent role models and deep, expanded professional networks. Throughout the summit, attendees will also be rewarded with valuable insights from global women leaders. The annual summit is designed to help you learn, grow and prosper professionally with new skills, knowledge and relationships gained every year. 

To learn more, visit the conference page at www.cpa2biz.com/lead.

About the Lubin School of Business at Pace University: Globally recognized and prestigiously accredited, the Lubin School of Business integrates New York City’s business world into the experienced-based education of its students at Pace’s suburban and downtown campuses, implemented by the region’s largest co-op program, team-based learning, and customized career guidance. Its programs are designed to launch success-oriented graduates toward upwardly mobile careers.  www.pace.edu/lubin

About Leslie F. Seidman:  Leslie F. Seidman is currently the Executive Director of the Center for Excellence in Financial Reporting at the Lubin School of Business at Pace University.  She is also a Director of Moody's Corporation, where she serves on the Audit, Governance & Compensation and MIS (Moody's Investors Service) committees and a Public Governor of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA). She is the immediate past Chairman of the FASB, where she also served as a member of the Board from 2003-2013. During her tenure, the FASB issued standards and proposals on complex topics such as accounting for stock compensation, business combinations, disclosure effectiveness, off-balance sheet financing, fair value, revenue recognition, leasing, insurance, and financial instruments.

As FASB Chairman, Seidman collaborated with the Securities and Exchange Commission, the PCAOB, and other regulators to improve financial reporting in the U.S. capital markets. She helped launch the FASB's Private Company Council, to address concerns about the cost and complexity of accounting for small businesses. Seidman guided the FASB's joint agenda with the International Accounting Standards Board to converge U.S. and international financial reporting standards. Seidman represented the U.S. in the International Forum of Accounting Standard Setters and was an Observer to the International Integrated Reporting Council.

Previously, Seidman was an auditor with Arthur Young & Co., a Vice President of Accounting Policy with J.P. Morgan & Co., and a member of the FASB staff, serving first as an Industry Fellow, and later as the Assistant Director of Technical Activities. Immediately prior to joining the FASB, Seidman founded and managed a financial reporting consulting firm, serving corporations, accounting firms, and law firms.

Seidman was named CPA of the year by the American Woman's Society of CPAs (2013). She also was ranked among the Top 10 Most Influential People in Accounting by Accounting Today from 2010 to 2012, and was named to the NACD Directorship 100 for Governance in 2011. Seidman authored the first three editions of Financial Instruments: A Comprehensive Guide to Accounting and Reporting (currently in its 11th edition from CCH). She is a frequent speaker at conferences and universities.

Seidman, a CPA (inactive), earned an M.S. degree in accounting from New York University Stern School of Business and a B.A. degree in English from Colgate University.

She is a member of the AICPA, the American Woman's Society of CPAs, Financial Executives International, the International Women's Forum, and the Institute of Management Accountants, where she formerly served on the Financial Reporting Committee. She is also a member of the National Association of Corporate Directors. 

Media contact:  Bill Caldwell, Pace, 212-346-1597, wcaldwell@pace.edu

 

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Wall Street Journal: "H-P Move Highlights Disruption in Tech"

10/07/2014

Wall Street Journal: "H-P Move Highlights Disruption in Tech"

. . . “We are moving from the past generation of leadership to a new generation of leadership,” said Joseph M. Pastore Jr., professor emeritus at Pace University’s Lubin School of Business in New York. “Until that new generation of leadership really takes hold, it’s going to be a very ill-defined, undefined moment in the industry.”

Read more: http://online.wsj.com/articles/hewlett-packard-move-highlights-the-disruption-in-tech-1412639249

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International Business Times: "Hong Kong Protests: Talks Or Not, Beijing Still Has A Problem"

10/07/2014

International Business Times: "Hong Kong Protests: Talks Or Not, Beijing Still Has A Problem"

. . . "The students no longer trust Leung Chun-yin's leadership," said Joseph Lee, a professor of history at Pace University in New York. "But they're also going to avoid asking for unrealistic concessions from either the Hong Kong or Chinese governments."

Read more: http://www.ibtimes.com/hong-kong-protests-talks-or-not-beijing-still-has...

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