About Vermillion: Steering Committee

You want to know that the organizations you work with have established rigorous systems to ensure good operations and good governance.

Vermillion Professional Network is borne of the collaboration of professional consultants, lawyers and engineers so we understand how important it is for projects to conducted in a rigorous and businesslike manner.

After looking at the practices of professional associations and open project developers whose accomplishments we respect, we created systems to monitor and drive the success of our initiatives.

We knew we were preparing a foundation for a worthy set of activities—and that's why the network's development model was structured to add value.

It is guided by a steering committee of subject-matter experts who recommend programs and operational models to the network's directors. It's also guided by the board of directors of Vermillion Institute (the "Board") that contribute to its effectiveness in corporate governance, financial governance, information technology, social media engagement, learning, and scientific analysis. It is also informed by a growing roster of advisors and senior advisors who are also subject-matter experts.

Board members were nominated and elected based on their (i) competencies; (ii) integrity; (iii) capacity for independent judgment; (iv) willingness to volunteer and commit over a 100 hours in the Institute's first year; (v) capacities for board interaction.

In the very first meeting of the Board, they established the respective roles and responsibilities of the Board and executive officers; these roles continue to be reviewed on a periodic basis.

In the same meeting, Elise Dubourg moved that the board create a robust framework for oversight and accountability.

The resulting framework came to be known as Vermillion Institute's governing policies. The board resolved to adopt those governing policies in April 2009.

They establish a comprehensive code of conduct, describing the objectives and conduct the board, the chairs of board committees, as well as for Vermillion staff and signatories. In addition to promoting the ethical and responsible behavior and decision-making of Vermillion people, they provide direction for the development and no-charge distribution of useful sustainability information to both public and business groups. And since competitors may occasionally come together in Vermillion discussion forums, the policies manage risk through appropriate competition (antitrust) law and anti-corruption policies.

As another part of the governance process, in 2009 the Board identified the need to compartmentalize the roles of international, national, and local research, policy development and communications. When it comes to elevating people, planet and prosperity, the many fields of professional service have unique opportunities and tensions, all of which require a dedicated community. To that end, Vermillion Professional Network was established as a division of Vermillion Communities Incorporated—and it was given a mandate to grow and become an independently self-sustaining social enterprise, focusing primarily on the needs of professionals who have the ears of key decision makers and whose recommendations impact the sustainable development agenda (one way or another). The Board therefore holds a crucial oversight role, while enabling research and solution development to occur through the efforts of subject-matter experts in Vermillion Professional Network working groups.

In 2010, following consultations with a range of professions, Vermillion Professional Network adopted its own set of "Governing Policies"; but while the institute's governing policies focus on the means to add value to sustainability policy and governance, the network's Governing Policies focus on how to enable professionals to innovate and collaborate, building strategic tools that deliver value to themselves, their clients and society.

The Institute has also established processes to:

  1. Examine its board membership to select and appoint directors to ensure its members have the necessary competencies
  2. Improve board performance
  3. Provide its new directors with a comprehensive orientation and, as funds permit, provide continuing education opportunities for all directors
  4. Identify, assess and resolve actual and potential conflicts of interest
  5. Ensure that compensation policies are aligned with Vermillion's best interests
  6. Recognize and manage risks that could adversely impact the achievement of Vermillion's objectives

Vermillion has also established processes to engage with and report to its stakeholders on a regular basis.

Accordingly, we report results in terms of measurable outcomes, and we adhere to our bylaws and governing policies; these are the best ways we know to continue to demonstrate Vermillion's value to the sustainability movement.

Get Started

Meet the first member of the steering committee.