Finding Top Board Talent From Within & Outside of the Organization


Join Lee Ann Howard, Founder, Howard & O’Brien Executive Search; Christine Yan, Board Director for Modine Manufacturing Company, ON Semiconductor, Ansell Limited, and Cabot Corporation; and David Shaw, Publishing Director, Directors & Boards, as they discuss best practices for identifying, developing and retaining the next generation of board talent.

Thursday, July 15, 2021
2:00 PM EDT

Vimeo Video

Board recruitment should be top of mind in every organization. Even if your seats are full today, boards should be forward-thinking in addressing the need to develop future members. Companies ought to be pre-recruiting candidates (both internally and externally) long before a seat at the table opens.


In today’s competitive climate, we are no longer filling vacant slots but rather identifying the best potential leaders who possess the right competencies for board service. So how do you begin the process of finding highly qualified and engaged talent that will align with your company strategy? And once you have found them, what do you do next?



Lee Ann Howard

Founder, Howard & O’Brien Executive Search;

Lee Ann Howard is the founder of Howard & O’Brien Executive Search, where most of her time is spent on executive search assignments and consulting clients. Lee Ann identifies candidates for senior general management positions and specializes in functional assignments in human resources, finance, and sales and marketing. In addition, she has expertise in finding key members for boards of directors for both public and privately held companies. Prior to entering executive search, Lee Ann’s career included senior human resources positions with world-class companies, including Nestlé SA, The DuPont Merck Pharmaceutical Company, Marion Merrell Dow, and Frito-Lay Inc.  


Lee Ann is active in both professional organizations and philanthropic endeavors. She is currently on the board of the MetroHealth Foundation, the John Carroll University Entrepreneur Association, and is the former board chair of the American Heart Association. She has also served on the boards of In Counsel with Women, The Gathering Place, Women’s Community Foundation, and Business Volunteers Unlimited, and is the founder of the Conversations with the Board® series.


Ms. Howard was an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist and has received many awards and honors, including the National Association of Women Business Owners Top Ten Award in Northeast Ohio, the Athena Award, and the Medical Mutual Pillar Award for Community Service.  


Lee Ann earned an MS in management from Baker University and a BA in mass-communications from Truman State University.


Christine Yan

Board Director for Modine Manufacturing Company, ON Semiconductor, Ansell Limited, and Cabot Corporation

Christine Yan is an experienced public company board member and senior operating executive with a successful track record in managing global P&L, M&A, Sales and Marketing and R&D Engineering. Christine serves on the board of Modine Manufacturing Company, ON Semiconductor, Ansell Limited, and Cabot Corporation. She is a member of the China Advisory Group for the Merchant Banking Division of Goldman Sachs. She has assumed committee leadership roles and has been actively involved different aspects of corporate governance. She is the Chair or Governance and Nominating committee for Modine Manufacturing and Chair of Compensation committee for ON Semiconductor. She also serves in Audit, Safety, Health, Environmental and Sustainability and Science and Technology committees.

Christine spent nearly 30 years with Stanley Black and Decker, a $14 billion global diversified industrial company known for superior quality, continual innovation and rigorous operational discipline in Tools and Storage, Engineered fastening and Security Services. She was a member of the senior executive team and held a number of significant P&L roles including as President of Asia, President of Storage and Workspace Systems, President of Americas and President of Global Automotive for Stanley Engineered Fastening.

Christine began her career as an engineering intern at Emhart Technologies, Black & Decker’s Fastening and Assembly Systems Group. During her tenure there she held a number of positions of increasing responsibilities including Product Development Engineer, Engineering Manager, General Manager of China Operations, Vice President of Research and Development and Vice President of Sales and marketing for the company’s North American Automotive business. She became the first female at Black and Decker to take on a significant P&L role when she was named President of Global Automotive in 2006.

Christine is a member of The Committee of 200 (C200), an invitation only membership organization of the world’ most successful women business leaders, she was a spokesperson for C200 on their Women in STEM initiative. She is a member of Paradigm for Parity Coalition, which is aimed at achieving gender parity in corporate leadership and a member of the Pinnacle group, a pan Asian corporation directors organization.

Christine holds a Master’s of Business Administration degree from the University of Michigan, a Master’s of Science in Mechanical Engineering degree from Wayne State University and a Bachelor’s of Science degree from Shandong University.

David Shaw

Publishing Director, Directors & Boards

David Shaw is the publishing director of Directors & Boards and its sister publication, Family Business. With more than 30 years of experience in business-to-business and consumer media markets, he has served as an editor, publisher, publishing director, group publisher and group vice president of a variety of publications, trade shows, conferences and websites.

Prior to founding GRID Media, David served as senior vice president for Phillips Business Information Inc., where he oversaw nearly 100 discrete media properties, and helped build the business from $35 million to more than $100 million in annual revenues. He is a frequent author and speaker on issues related to business-to-business media, multi-generational family businesses and private and public company governance. He is married, with two grown children, one serving in the Navy and the other in law school.

  • No cost to attend.
  • All participants receive a copy of the webinar materials after the event.
  • All particpants will receive the Directors & Boards newsletter featuring real-time news, analysis and thought leadership on corporate governance  -- all delivered right to your inbox every Monday morning. You may, of course, opt out at any time.
  • Opportunity for questions and feedback.
  • Unbiased third-party director education.
  • 60 minutes -- maximum value for time.

Howard & O'Brien Executive Search