Michelle Edkins is a Managing Director at BlackRock and Global Head of its Corporate Governance and Responsible Investment team of 20 specialists based in five key regions internationally. Michelle is responsible for the team’s engagement and proxy voting activities in relation to the companies in which BlackRock invests on behalf of clients. She also serves on the firm’s Government Relations Steering Committee. She is an active participant in the public corporate governance debate and regularly speaks and writes on the importance of good stewardship for company performance. She is Vice-Chairman of the Board of Governors of the International Corporate Governance Network and is involved in a range of other initiatives in the field of corporate governance and responsible investment. Prior to joining BlackRock in 2009, Michelle was Managing Director at Governance for Owners, an independent partnership offering products that support responsible long-term share ownership. She started her corporate governance career in 1997 at Hermes Pensions Management, where she spent eight years, initially as the head of the corporate governance team and thereafter as Director of Institutional Relations. An economist by training, Michelle has also worked for New Zealand’s central bank and the British High Commission in Wellington.