There is no substitute for a culture of integrity in organizations. Compliance alone with the law is not enough. History shows that those who make a practice of skating close to the edge always wind up going over the line. A higher bar of ethics performance is necessary. That bar needs to be set and monitored in the boardroom.  ~J. Richard Finlay writing in The Globe and Mail.

Sound governance is not some abstract ideal or utopian pipe dream. Nor does it occur by accident or through sudden outbreaks of altruism. It happens when leaders lead with integrity, when directors actually direct and when stakeholders demand the highest level of ethics and accountability.  ~ J. Richard Finlay in testimony before the Standing Committee on Banking, Commerce and the Economy, Senate of Canada.

The Finlay Centre for Corporate & Public Governance is the longest continuously cited voice on modern governance standards. Our work over the course of four decades helped to build the new paradigm of ethics and accountability by which many corporations and public institutions are judged today.

The Finlay Centre was founded by J. Richard Finlay, one of the world’s most prescient voices for sound boardroom practices, sanity in CEO pay and the ethical responsibilities of trusted leaders. He coined the term stakeholder capitalism in the 1980s.

We pioneered the attributes of environmental responsibility, social purposefulness and successful governance decades before the arrival of ESG. Today we are trying to rebuild the trust that many dubious ESG practices have shattered. 


We were the first to predict seismic boardroom flashpoints and downfalls and played key roles in regulatory milestones and reforms.

We’re working to advance the agenda of the new boardroom and public institution of today: diversity at the table; ethics that shine through a culture of integrity; the next chapter in stakeholder capitalism; and leadership that stands as an unrelenting champion for all stakeholders.

Our landmark work in creating what we called a culture of integrity and the ethical practices of trusted organizations has been praised, recognized and replicated around the world.


Our rich institutional memory, combined with a record of innovative thinking for tomorrow’s challenges, provide umatached resources to corporate and public sector players.

Trust is the asset that is unseen until it is shattered.  When crisis hits, we know a thing or two about how to rebuild trust— especially in turbulent times.

We’re still one of the world’s most recognized voices on CEO pay and the role of boards as compensation credibility gatekeepers. Somebody has to be.

Emerson once observed that “Some circumstantial evidence is very strong, as when you find a trout in the milk.”  Some details in reporting are a tad too crucial to leave out, as when the author of an opinion piece is penning the missive from a federal prison because of two little character defects called fraud and obstruction of justice.  This is what occurred in Time’s online edition, which ran a piece by Conrad Black, known widely as Lord Black of Crossharbour, formerly of the Bridle Path in Toronto, Palm Beach, and London, but more recently as inmate number 18330-424 of the Coleman Correction Facility in Florida, and a regular subject of commentary on these pages.

It somewhat boggles the imagination that mainstream journalism, and one of its most storied institutions at that, has to turn to miscreants and fraudsters to interpret the world of politics to its readers.  That spinning sound you hear is Henry Luce turning over in his grave. Repeatedly. Fortunately, this is a detail that matters to some thoughtful readers, like the intellectually versatile and always curious Lance Knobel, who is also troubled by the sudden plunge in the magazine’s byline standards.  His to-the-point admonition of Time for its selective memory is available here.