M. Michele Burns

Director Since: October 2011 

Committees: Chair, Risk Committee; member, Compensation and Corporate Governance and Nominating Committees
Other Current Public Company Directorships: Cisco Systems, Inc. and Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Other Public Company Directorships within past 5 years: Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. 

Career Highlights

  • Chief Executive Officer, Retirement Policy Center, sponsored by Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. (MMC); Center focuses on retirement public policy issues (October 2011 - February 2014) 

  • Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Mercer LLC, a subsidiary of MMC and a global leader in human resource consulting, outsourcing and investment services (September 2006 – early October 2011)

  • Chief Financial Officer, MMC, a global professional services and consulting firm (March 2006 – September 2006)

  • Chief Financial Officer, Chief Restructuring Officer and Executive Vice President, Mirant Corporation, an energy company (May 2004 – January 2006)

  • Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Delta Air Lines, Inc., an air carrier, which filed for protection under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code in September 2005 (including various other positions, 1999 – April 2004)

  • Senior Partner and Leader, Southern Region Federal Tax Practice, Arthur Andersen LLP, an accounting firm (including various other positions, 1981 –1999)

Other Professional Experience and Community Involvement

  • Center Fellow and Strategic Advisor, Stanford University Center on Longevity 

  • Board member and Treasurer, Elton John AIDS Foundation

Experience and Qualifications

As the former Chief Financial Officer of several global public companies, Ms. Burns brings to our Board substantial expertise in accounting and the review and preparation of financial statements. In addition, as the former CEO of Mercer LLC, Ms. Burns brings to our Board her experience in human capital management and strategic consulting, which assists our Board in its oversight of our firm’s strategy. Ms. Burns draws upon these skills, as well as her experience as the former Chair of our Audit Committee, as the Chair of our Risk Committee. Through her service on the boards of directors and board committees of other public companies and not-for-profit entities, Ms. Burns has developed additional leadership, governance and risk expertise.