Southern Illinois University Edwardsville School of Business alumnus R. John Fletcher has earned the National Association of Corporate Directors’ (NACD) distinguished designation of 2018 Director of the Year.
Fletcher will be honored during the 2018 NACD Directorship 100 black-tie gala on Wednesday, Nov. 28 in New York City.
The annual event recognizes leading corporate directors, corporate governance experts, policymakers and influencers—leaders who significantly impact boardroom practices and performances. It celebrates those who serve as role models in promoting exemplary board leadership, oversight and courage in the boardroom.
“I am honored to be recognized as Director of the Year by the National Association of Corporate Directors,” said Fletcher, Managing Partner of Fletcher Spaght Inc., which he founded in 1983.
He currently serves on the board of directors of Axcelis Corporation, MRI Interventions, and is Chairman of Metabolon. The NACD Director of the Year honor recognizes his service as Spectranetics Corporation’s Chairman of the Board during its turnaround and subsequent sale to Philips NV in August 2017.
“Serving on a board of directors is a privilege that brings significant responsibility,” he explained. “The best directors are those who feel the presence of the shareholders, and thus, consistently are highly diligent in their governance. I have always believed in taking every professional effort seriously, and devoting all of my energy and capability accordingly. We cannot know how things will end up, but we must be sure we applied our personal best.”
As chairman of the board for Spectranetics Corporation, Fletcher reconstituted both the board of directors and the executive management team. From 2011-17, Fletcher notes that Spectranetics’ enterprise value grew from $200 million to $2.2 billion.
“Success of that magnitude requires a true team effort,” Fletcher emphasized. “I am pleased to represent the team that developed Spectranetics into a successful outcome for its shareholders.”
While a U.S. Air Force jet pilot, Fletcher earned a master’s in business administration from SIUE in 1973.
“SIUE provided the scheduling flexibility to complete my MBA coursework and meet my flying commitments,” he said. “SIUE had an incredible faculty, and I could not have been more pleased with the quality of the courses. I was fortunate to have fellow students who were talented and highly motivated. They greatly enriched my MBA experience.”
The nationally-recognized leader encourages individuals to become a member of a board of directors or a board of advisers as early in their career as possible, as they are “highly beneficial learning experiences.”
“Boards are comprised of experienced business people who serve as equals,” Fletcher said. “In the few hours allotted to most board meetings, a director must come up to speed, decide what the issues or options are, and be persuasive relative to other directors.”
“At Spectranetics, it would have been easy to resign at the time the future of the company was in doubt,” he added. “The effort to turn it around was going to be enormous, and the probability of success was low. But, I stayed involved with the company, reasoning that if I wanted to be a director in good times, I should live up to that commitment in difficult times.”
NACD Directorship magazine will feature profiles of the 2018 honorees in its November/December issue.
Photo: School of Business alumnus R. John Fletcher has earned the National Association of Corporate Directors’ (NACD) distinguished designation of 2018 Director of the Year.