Corporate Boards

A follow-on comment to the recent correspondence regarding scientists on corporate boards (R. Finn, The Scientist, Jan. 10, 1994, page 21; I.S. Johnson, The Scientist, May 2, 1994, page 13) is in order. Further to the excellent comments of Johnson, it should be pointed out that serving on boards of directors for young companies is not without potential personal financial exposure as a result of the frequent legal action directed ag

Charles Smith
Aug 21, 1994

A follow-on comment to the recent correspondence regarding scientists on corporate boards (R. Finn, The Scientist, Jan. 10, 1994, page 21; I.S. Johnson, The Scientist, May 2, 1994, page 13) is in order. Further to the excellent comments of Johnson, it should be pointed out that serving on boards of directors for young companies is not without potential personal financial exposure as a result of the frequent legal action directed against board members in the United States. It has been reported that approximately one-third of all public biotech-type companies have been sued by shareholders.

I support Johnson's comment about the great value of outside scientists with drug-development experience serving on boards to help guide the decision-making process. Many of us who serve with small company boards have yet to realize any significant monetary gains from stock appreciation (the major reward to board members) because the companies are still in early...

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