Benedictine Coalition for Responsible Investment
The Benedictine Sisters of Chicago have been a member of the Benedictine Coalition for Responsible Investment since 2015. Along with 18 Benedictine monasteries and three other congregations, the Director, Sister Susan Mika, OSB from the Benedictine Sisters of Boerne, Texas, advises and guides us to make a difference through our corporate investments. Each monastery invests a nominal amount of money in companies we might not otherwise invest in so as to be able to participate in shareholder meetings and in sponsoring or co-sponsoring shareholder resolutions on various issues such as workers’ rights, transparency in lobbying, health and safety for workers and consumers, and care for the earth. As Community Treasurer, Sister Mary Ann O’Ryan, OSB presently manages our small investments in two companies: Boeing and McDonald’s, in order to have a place at the shareholders’ table where our Benedictine Coalition voices are heard. On April 29, 2019 Sister Mary Ann attended the Boeing annual shareholder meeting at the Field Museum. She read a resolution proposing separation of the CEO & Board Chairman; at that time both positions were held by one person, a situation that had prevailed for some time.
Additionally, Sister Mary Ann through our Benedictine Coalition for Responsible Investment membership, has served as a shareholder proxy when shareholder meetings are held in Chicago. As noted in the Fall 2019 Issue 24 of the Benedictine Coalition for Responsible Investment magazine (pages found below), Sister Mary Ann attended the J.P. Morgan Chase meeting on May 21, 2019, the United Health Group shareholders meeting on June 3, 2019, and the United Airlines shareholder meeting on May 22, 2019. At the United meeting she presented two shareholder proposals: proxy access and the ability of shareholders to nominate board members. Read Sister Mary Ann’s official report here: (link to .pdf of pages)
Finally, A recent Global Sisters Report article “Q & A with Sr. Susan Mika, pushing McDonald's to remove antibiotics from its beef,” by Dan Stockman, described the Benedictine Coalition for Responsible Investment in detail and specifically our proposals to McDonald’s to remove antibiotics from their beef, which Sister Susan had been working for many years. In 2016, McDonald’s announced that they would remove antibiotics from its beef.