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President Bush Signs Legislation To Modernize American Red Cross Governance

Armen Hareyan's picture

Red Cross Governance

President Bush signed legislation that will modernize the governance structure of the American Red Cross and enhance the Red Cross Board of Governors' ability to support the critical mission of the Red Cross in the 21st century.

"The American Red Cross is very grateful to President Bush, Members of Congress, our Governance Advisory Panel, other non-profit and for-profit governance experts and the entire Red Cross family for their outstanding support throughout this transformational process," said Bonnie McElveen- Hunter, Chairman, American Red Cross. "This day and this legislation are truly historic for the Red Cross as we better prepare ourselves to meet the challenges facing us not only today but most importantly, for tomorrow."

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Last year, the Red Cross initiated a comprehensive assessment of its governance structure that culminated in the publication of a 156-page report entitled, "American Red Cross Governance for the 21st Century." Throughout the review process, a group of independent governance experts, led by Karen Hastie Williams, generously donated their time and expertise to the Red Cross Board.

"This is an historic day for the American Red Cross and for all people who rely on this vital organization," said Patricia McGuire, President of Trinity (Washington) University and member of the Red Cross's Governance Panel. "President Bush's signature on this legislation opens a new era for more effective Red Cross governance, which will surely result in even better delivery of Red Cross services and support to the public in times of crisis. I salute Bonnie McElveen-Hunter and the Red Cross board for their courage to undertake difficult change as part of their tireless commitment to excellence in Red Cross services."

Based on this report and its unanimously approved recommendations, the Board sought urgent Congressional approval of its recommendations of which the most significant reforms included: