Foley's National Directors Institute Announces Directors of the Year Winners

21 October 2014 Media Contact: Dan Farrell News

Foley & Lardner LLP is pleased to announce the recipients of its second annual National Directors Institute (NDI) Director of the Year awards. In connection with its 13th annual NDI Executive Exchange conference in Chicago on November 5 and 6, Foley’s NDI will award Kenneth Jastrow, lead director of MGIC Investment Corporation, as Public Company Director of the Year, and Walter Winding, owner and president of Winding & Company, as Private Company Director of the Year.

“We are thrilled to honor Kenny and Walt with this recognition,” said Steve Barth, chair of Foley’s National Directors Institute. “Both take great pride in their contributions to the corporate governance of their companies, which is clearly visible through their focus on strategic planning and enterprise risk management.”

The award program was created in 2013 to acknowledge exceptional public and private company directors who have exhibited demonstrable leadership in the boardroom resulting in a significant impact on the level of corporate governance and performance at their company. Currently in its 13th year, NDI is one of the nation’s oldest and most preeminent practical symposiums focused on boardroom governance.

Jastrow has served as a director of the MGIC Investment Corporation since 1994 and has acted as its lead director since the position was first created in 2009. During his tenure as MGIC’s lead director, Jastrow worked closely with MGIC’s management team to lead the mortgage insurance company out of the housing crash. He had an active role in overseeing MGIC’s raising a total of $2.3 billion of new capital, its successful defense of a class action strike suit litigation and related SEC inquiry that followed the onset of the housing crisis, and its resolution of mortgage insurance coverage disputes with some of the world’s largest financial institutions. Through these economic and industry challenges, Jastrow’s corporate governance experience, strong leadership and knowledge of the residential real estate industry helped MGIC reemerge as the strong competitor it is today.

“I am honored to receive the Director of the Year Award from NDI. Good governance is a cornerstone of successful American companies, and NDI provides a creative environment for the peer-to-peer exchange of governance best practices and analysis of key trends to ensure good governance remains the hallmark of American business,” said Jastrow.

Winding formed his business consulting practice more than two decades ago after holding several executive positions including CEO, president and executive vice president. He is currently director of 15 privately held companies in the Midwest, with revenues ranging from $10 million to more than $1 billion per year. Among others, Winding serves on the boards of Palermo Villa, First Supply Group, Everett Smith Group, Novum Structures, Town Bank, Velocity Machining, Alliance Industries, Sheboygan Paint Company, Winsert, Inc., Brewer Co., Liturgical Publications Inc., Reinders, Inc., RCS Innovations, Boelter Companies, Great Lakes Roofing Corp., Drillmaster Tool, Nelson Container Corp., Midway Industrial Supply Co., Cousins Subs and Spring Valley, Inc. He also serves on the board of a community bank and three non-profit institutions. Winding has deep experience in corporate governance, succession planning, mergers and acquisitions, strategic planning, interim management, operations management, management development and developing boards of directors and advisory boards for privately held organizations. Recent examples include helping a board of directors through a government intervention over hiring issues and alleged illegal employees, leading a board through its oversight of a federal investigation of an alleged Buy American Act violation and coordinating an exit resolution strategy for two founders.

“I am humbled, honored and grateful to be named the National Directors Institute’s 2014 Private Company Director of the Year. Excellent corporate governance is an absolute necessity in today’s business environment and directors must continually promote a high degree of ethics and integrity in our day-to-day business relationships,” said Winding. “All corporate directors should be laser focused on adopting best practices, adopting appropriate policies and procedures, continually evaluating the effectiveness of the management team and providing the necessary changes and critical oversight to fully represent the best interests of our shareholders.”

For 13 years, NDI has served as a forum for business leaders to discuss best practices and new trends in corporate governance. In addition to its annual symposium, NDI offers a series of Web conferences and interactive programs throughout the year for executives, directors, officers, general counsel and boardroom advisors to both public and private companies. For more information or to register to attend NDI, please visit

The honorees were selected by a panel of judges from public and private companies across a variety of industry sectors, including Mary Brevard, executive director of Inforum BoardAccess; Richard Donnelly, chairman of the board for Oshkosh Corporation and NDI’s 2013 Public Company Director of the Year Award recipient; Michele Hooper, president and chief executive officer of The Directors’ Council, audit committee chair for PPG Industries, Inc., nominating and governance committee chair for UnitedHealth Group and board member for the Center for Audit Quality; Gail Lione, a director of Sargento Foods Inc. and Badger Meter; Marie Meisenbach Graul, audit committee chair and independent director of Pelican Products and NDI’s 2013 Private Company Director of the Year Award recipient; Rolf Richter, chief executive officer of Groeb Farms, Inc.; John Rowe, chairman emeritus of Exelon Corporation; Steve Scogna, chief executive officer of Northwest Community Healthcare; Mary Ellen Stanek, managing director and director of asset management for Robert W Baird & Co and chief investment officer of Baird Advisors; Carol Ward, vice president and corporate secretary of Mondelez International, Inc. (formerly Kraft Foods Inc.); and Jim Williams, president and chief executive officer of International Legwear Group.

Director of the Year Recipient Videos