Is the integration of Environmental, Social & Governance (ESG) criteria into mainstream investment decision-making. Often used as an umbrella term, responsible investment encompasses a range of approaches and investment options, from exclusionary screens to targeted investments to active ownership strategies.

Heartland has compiled a RESOURCE CENTER to include aggregated lists of responsible investment friendly organizations, global best investment practices, and a glossary of relevant terms.


Martin Lipton is a founding partner of Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz, specializing in mergers and acquisitions and matters affecting corporate policy and strategy. This post is based on a Wachtell Lipton memorandum by Mr. Lipton, David M. Silk, David E. Kahan, Sabastian V. Niles, Alicia C. McCarthy, and Carmen X. W. Lu. Related research from the Program on Corporate Governance includes The Illusory Promise of Stakeholder Gove...

A series of form letters sent to retirement plans hint at how the Labor Department may enforce a new requirement that sponsors justify socially conscious investments.

One such letter obtained by Bloomberg Law presses plan administrators to provide 13 types of supporting documents, including: the names, addresses, and duties of those responsible for making investment decisions, proxy voting policies, and myriad financial stateme...

The agency argued a fiduciary responsibility involves focusing solely on returns for participants

A Department of Labor proposal that would reform investment selection rules for retirement accounts could chill the use of socially responsible investments in them, experts said Wednesday.

Tuesday night, the DOL published for public comment a proposal to update and clarify its investment duties regulation for employer-sponsored reti...

July 8, 2020

Office of Regulations and Interpretations
Employee Benefits Security Administration
Room N-5655 U.S. Department of Labor
200 Constitution Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20210

Re: Financial Factors in Selecting Plan Investments
Proposed Regulation (RIN 1210-AB95)

Dear Director Canary:

On behalf of [Insert name of your organization], thank you for the opportunity to submit comments on the notice of proposed rulemaking entitled “Financ...

July 2, 2020

The Department of Labor’s proposed regulation clarifying investment duties of ERISA plan fiduciaries in relation to environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing is already drawing fire from Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA).

Murray, ranking member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee which has primary jurisdiction over ERISA-related issues, argues that the proposed rule would discourage financial...

Expresso Editor’s Note:  The US Department of Labor's (DOL) proposed rulemaking "Financial Factors in Selecting Plan Investments" was published in today's Federal Register.  Accordingly, the comment period is scheduled to end on July 30, 2020. Comments may be submitted electronically at https://www.regulations.gov/document?D=EBSA_FRDOC_0001-0210 .  The Heartland Network will be working to generate letters to the...

A new proposal by the Labor Department will require retirement-plan fiduciaries to choose investments “based solely on financial considerations” and is aimed to slow the interest in environmental, social, and governance (ESG) investing, analysts say. There is $10.7 trillion in private pension plans.

The DOL administers and enforces Erisa, the federal law governing private retirement and health plans. The proposal will have a 30...

June 29, 2020

On June 23, 2020, the Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued a proposed regulation (the “Proposed Rule”) defining plan fiduciaries’ duties under the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 (“ERISA”) when considering economically targeted investments or those that incorporate environmental, social, and governance (“ESG”) factors.  The Proposed Rule embodies some of the prior guidance and adds new recordkeeping requirements...

June 29, 2020

The DOL proposal is out of step with professional investment managers, who increasingly analyze ESG factors precisely because of risk, return and fiduciary considerations. 

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 24, 2020 – Yesterday, the US Department of Labor (DOL) released a proposed rulemaking to revise the fiduciary standard for ERISA-governed retirement plans. The proposal attempts to clarify when retirement plan fiduciaries may consider...

PITTSBURGH, June 25, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The United Steelworkers (USW) union, along with other members and leaders of the labor-environmental partnership BlueGreen Alliance (BGA), today launched the group's ambitious agenda to rebuild American manufacturing while fighting the effects of climate change.

The BGA, founded in 2006 by the USW and the Sierra Club, now includes more than a dozen unions and environmental organiza...

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Raquel Palmer is a Managing Partner of KPS Capital Partners, LP, Chairperson of its Investment Committee and member of its Management Committee.  KPS Capital Partners, LP is the manager of KPS Special Situations Funds, a family of private equity funds with approximately $5.4 billion of assets under management focused on making controlling equity investments in manufacturing and industrial companies across a diverse array of industries, including basic materials, branded consumer, healthcare and luxury products, automotive parts, capital equipment and general manufacturing. [READ MORE]

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