Non-Executive Chairman Duties

Written by mike broemmel
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Non-Executive Chairman Duties
Role and duties of non-executive board chairman. (gavel image by Cora Reed from Fotolia.com)

A corporation typically has one of two types of board chairmen. One option is an executive chairman of the board who is involved in day-to-day operations of the business in some manner. The second option a non-executive chairman who is not involved in day-to-day operations.

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Presides Over Board of Directors

The primary function of a non-executive chairman is to preside over the board of directors of the business. In addition to presiding over meetings of the board, a non-executive chairman makes appointments to board committees and coordinates the scheduling or regular and special meetings of the board of directors.

Advice to Management

Although not involved in the day-to-day management of the corporation, a non-executive chairman typically provides advice to the executive management team. Even though a non-executive chairman is active in making routine decisions, because of her position with the corporation, her opinions tend to carry weight with those charged with overall corporate management.

Public Outreach

Oftentimes a person is selected to be the non-executive chairman of a corporation because of his reputation in the community or world at large. Consequently, a primary duty of such a non-executive chairman is to attend or otherwise participate in public events and functions. Public outreach is a major task for such a chairman. A prime example of a non-executive chairman is Roy Disney, the nephew of Walt Disney. Although Roy Disney held a variety of positions with the Disney Company during his career, he served as a non-executive chairman for the company for a period of time. In no small way he was appointed to this position because of his relationship to the founder of the company and his family name.

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