Sharon Merrill Associates Recognized as Top Investor Relations
Thought Leader on Social Media

Wins Bronze Stevie Award for Best Twitter Feed

BOSTON, MA – (June 7, 2017) –  Sharon Merrill Associates, a leading strategic communications advisory firm, was named winner of a Bronze Stevie Award® in the Best Twitter Feed category in the 15th Annual American Business Awards. This award recognized Sharon Merrill Associates as a top Investor Relations thought leader for its innovative and effective use of social media.

“As a firm, we strive to lead the conversation on the changing landscape of corporate communications by featuring top investor relations news, actionable strategic communications advice, and thought leadership articles on Twitter. It is an honor to be recognized for our work by the American Business Awards,” said Maureen Wolff, chief executive officer of Sharon Merrill Associates. “We thank our team and partners for contributing and promoting our content across social media. We also look forward to continuing to work with many of our clients as we leverage our social media expertise and experience to support their communications strategies across all platforms.”

The American Business Awards are the nation’s premier business awards program. All organizations operating in the U.S. are eligible to submit nominations – public and private, for-profit and non-profit, large and small. More than 190 professionals worldwide participated in the judging process to select this year’s Stevie Award winners.

“Each year the judges find the quality and variety of the nominations to be greater than the year before. The 2017 competition was intense and every organization that has won should be proud,” said Michael Gallagher, president and founder of the Stevie Awards.

About the Stevie Awards

Stevie Awards are conferred in seven programs: the Asia-Pacific Stevie Awards, the German Stevie Awards, The American Business Awards, The International Business Awards, the Stevie Awards for Women in Business, the Stevie Awards for Great Employers, and the Stevie Awards for Sales & Customer Service. Stevie Awards competitions receive more than 10,000 entries each year from organizations in more than 60 nations. Honoring organizations of all types and sizes and the people behind them, the Stevies recognize outstanding performances in the workplace worldwide. Learn more about the Stevie Awards at http://www.StevieAwards.com.

About Sharon Merrill Associates, Inc.

Sharon Merrill Associates is a strategic communications advisory firm that provides investor relations, crisis communications, proxy/activist defensereputation management, corporate communications, and presentation and media training. Founded in 1985 and serving public and private client companies in North America and Europe, the firm plans and executes strategic communications that resonate with stakeholders and deliver results. The team has earned wide recognition for communications thought leadership, and is distinguished by its longstanding client relationships. To learn more about Sharon Merrill Associates, please visit its website, www.InvestorRelations.com.


Sharon Merrill Associates Announces the Addition of Innophos Holdings Inc. to its Roster

Leverages Decades of Expertise in Financial Communications to Implement Integrated Strategic Communications Program During Pinnacle Time in Innophos’ Transformation

BOSTON, MA – (June 6, 2017) –  Sharon Merrill Associates, a leading strategic advisory firm focused on investor relations and strategic corporate communications, announced that it has added food, health, nutrition and industrial specialty ingredients provider Innophos Holdings, Inc. (“Innophos”) to its roster. Through the partnership, Sharon Merrill Associates is providing Innophos with integrated communications services including investor relations, strategic positioning, and corporate communications.

“Sharon Merrill Associates has delivered on their promise to serve as a trusted advisor with a highly strategic approach to communications, meticulous attention to detail, and commitment to results,” said Han Kieftenbeld, Innophos’ senior vice president and chief financial officer. “This is a very important transformational time for our company as we execute against our strategy to be a growing global supplier of vital ingredient solutions for the Food, Health and Nutrition markets. Sharon Merrill Associates’ deep experience and insight, strategic thought process and strong relationships with Wall Street are proving to be key as we work to reposition our story, enhance our investor relations program and build greater awareness for Innophos among the financial community.”

The companies kicked off their partnership this past Fall with the completion of a STREETSCOPE® investor perception audit, which was designed to yield actionable insight from investors. This work informed the design of the integrated strategic communications program for Innophos that includes positioning and messaging, quarterly earnings communications, Wall Street relations outreach and employee communications. Most recently, the companies partnered to execute Innophos’ 2017 Investor Day to introduce Innophos’ new strategic growth roadmap and long-term growth plan ‘Vision 2022: The Path to Revitalized Growth.’

“We are thrilled that Innophos has entrusted Sharon Merrill Associates as its strategic communications partner to help set the course for its transformation,” said Maureen Wolff, chief executive officer of Sharon Merrill. “For more than three decades, clients have trusted us to effectively communicate their story through an array of situations including periods of transformation, mergers & acquisitions and other unplanned events. We take a methodical and informed approach to strategic communications that is rooted in our deep understanding of each client’s business and industry. We look forward to working with Innophos to implement a well-thought out strategic communications program that effectively repositions their story, helps them achieve fair valuation and strengthens their relationships with employees, customers, investors and other critical stakeholders.”

About Sharon Merrill Associates, Inc.

Sharon Merrill Associates is a strategic communications advisory firm that provides investor relations, crisis communications, proxy/activist defense, M&A communications, corporate communications, and presentation and media training. Founded in 1985 and serving public and private client companies in North America and Europe, the firm plans and executes strategic communications that resonate with stakeholders and deliver results. The team has earned wide recognition for communications thought leadership, and is distinguished by its longstanding client relationships.

To learn more about Sharon Merrill Associates, please visit its website, www.InvestorRelations.com.

About Innophos Holdings, Inc.

Innophos is a leading international producer of specialty ingredient solutions that deliver far-reaching, versatile benefits for the food, health, nutrition and industrial markets. We leverage our expertise in the science and technology of blending and formulating phosphate, mineral and botanical based ingredients to help our customers offer products that are tasty, healthy, nutritious and economical. Headquartered in Cranbury, New Jersey, Innophos has manufacturing operations across the United States, in Canada, Mexico and China. For more information, please visit www.innophos.com. ‘IPHS-G’


Sharon Merrill Associates Announces Launch of Proxy GamePlan™

New service delivers unique approach to strategic shareholder engagement rooted in voting analytics and communications expertise

BOSTON, MA – (June 5, 2017) –  Sharon Merrill Associates, a leading strategic communications advisory firm, announced that it has launched a strategic service called Proxy GamePlan™. The new service helps clients implement best-in-class, year-round shareholder engagement programs that enhance shareholder and proxy advisor relations, identify risks before they become contested proxy issues and achieve desirable proxy voting results.

Sharon Merrill Associates’ Proxy GamePlan provides management teams and boards of directors with a year-round strategic roadmap for effective shareholder engagement that is grounded in a deep, data-backed understanding of a company’s proxy practices, shareholder voting behavior and peer landscape, and is activated through a series of thoughtful and effective communications channels.

“With shareholder activism still on the rise and institutional investors sharpening their focus on corporate governance issues like board diversity, Proxy Access, environmental, sustainability and governance (ESG) reporting, and Say-on-Pay, it is critical that public companies take a proactive approach to shareholder engagement,” said Maureen Wolff, chief executive officer of Sharon Merrill Associates. “Furthermore, recent strong public stances on governance issues from major institutional investors such as BlackRock and State Street Global Advisors reinforce the need for shareholder engagement to be based on a sophisticated understanding of shareholder focus areas and voting trends.”

Proxy GamePlan helps companies engage with their key stakeholders in a consistent and informed manner with the goal of avoiding unwanted contested proxy situations and improving overall governance practices and relationships.”

With Proxy GamePlan, Sharon Merrill Associates utilizes the predictive power of voting analytics data from Proxy Insight to profile each client’s shareholder base and identify potential proxy risks. This analysis is combined with a thorough company and peer group proxy review to inform the development of a fully integrated shareholder engagement program. Each Proxy GamePlan includes customized recommendations on effective proxy design and communications.  The platform is fully customizable to each client’s distinct circumstances and proxy agendas, and can include:

  • Company ‘form and function’ analysis
  • Shareholder base profiling
  • Activism defense review
  • Peer group analysis
  • Impactful proxy presentation and design review
  • Shareholder engagement plan

The new Proxy GamePlan service complements the firm’s 30 years of experience in the areas of investor relations and crisis communications, including its work helping clients communicate environmental, social and governance programs through impactful sustainability reports. This practice is becoming increasingly important as institutions are holding management and boards more accountable for ESG practices and policies. According to Proxy Insight, through May of 2017, institutional investors representing approximately $5.4 trillion in assets under management have implemented voting policy changes related to environmental & social (“E&S”) resolutions.

Wolff concluded, “We look forward to integrating our new Proxy GamePlan service with our existing investor relations offerings to provide clients with a holistic approach to communicating with all key institutional stakeholders – from portfolio managers and analysts to governance contacts.”

About Sharon Merrill Associates, Inc.

Sharon Merrill Associates is a strategic communications advisory firm that provides investor relations, crisis communications, proxy/activist defense,  reputation management, corporate communications, and presentation and media training. Founded in 1985 and serving public and private client companies in North America and Europe, the firm plans and executes strategic communications that resonate with stakeholders and deliver results. The team has earned wide recognition for communications thought leadership, and is distinguished by its longstanding client relationships.

To learn more about Sharon Merrill Associates, please visit its website, www.InvestorRelations.com.


Sharon Merrill Associates Transitions Ownership to Long-Time Partners

Maureen Wolff and David Calusdian Take Reins at Leading Investor Relations Firm; Founder and Financial Industry Veteran Sharon F. Merrill to Focus on Serving Corporate Boards

David Calusdian and Maureen Wolff Sharon Merrill AssociatesBOSTON, November 17, 2016 – After building Sharon Merrill Associates into one of the nation’s premier investor relations and corporate communications strategic advisory firms, Founder Sharon F. Merrill has transitioned her interest in the business to long-time partners Maureen T. Wolff and David C. Calusdian, the firm announced today.

Wolff (31 years at Sharon Merrill Associates) and Calusdian (21 years) will continue to lead a team of some of the best and brightest professionals in investor relations. Nationally recognized for its expertise, Sharon Merrill Associates’ reputation for strategic leadership in M&A, transaction communications, proxy/activist defense and crisis communications continues to expand.

Merrill, a leading communications expert and veteran of Boston’s financial industry, founded the firm in 1985, leveraging both her experience as a buy-side analyst and as the creator of Lotus Development Corp.’s investor relations department.  She will now turn her attention to serving public company boards. Sharon Merrill Associates will retain the name of its founder, who will have the title of chairman emerita.

With the transition, Wolff moves from the role of president to chief executive officer. Calusdian, formerly executive vice president, takes over as president. National experts in investor relations and corporate communications, Wolff and Calusdian are quoted frequently in the national media and sought after as speakers on topics including disclosure, board and shareholder communications and shareholder activism.

“Given my interest in devoting more time in service to public company boards of directors, coupled with the increased roles Maureen and David have taken in driving the firm’s growth and reputation over the years, this is the ideal time to pass the torch to my long-time partners,” said Merrill.

“It is an honor to lead the firm whose name has become synonymous with excellence in investor relations and communications strategy,” said Wolff. “We will continue to innovate in all facets of our practice, from investor relations to M&A, proxy/activist defense and crisis communications. On behalf of myself, David and the firm’s dedicated team, we thank Sharon for her leadership during the past 31 years and look forward to continuing to exemplify communications excellence and building on the firm’s stellar national reputation.”

Known for its leadership in advancing the practice of investor relations, the firm helps companies improve liquidity, lower their cost of capital and attract new investors.  And when an unplanned event threatens a company’s credibility or reputation, Sharon Merrill Associates serves as a trusted advisor with a track record of successfully handling the most challenging crisis situations.

About Sharon Merrill Associates, Inc.

Sharon Merrill Associates is an independent strategic advisory firm that provides investor relations, crisis communications, proxy/activist defense, M&A communications, corporate communications, and presentation and media training. Founded in 1985 and serving public and private client companies in North America and Europe, the firm plans and executes strategic communications that resonate with stakeholders and deliver successful results. The Sharon Merrill Associates team has earned wide recognition for communications thought leadership, and is distinguished by its longevity at the firm and longstanding client relationships.

To learn more about Sharon Merrill Associates, please visit its website, www.InvestorRelations.com.


Sharon Merrill Celebrates 30 Years of Leadership in Strategic Communications

Launches Redesigned InvestorRelations.com Website Highlighting Expanded Portfolio of Client Services and Featuring Award-Winning Blog, The Podium

BOSTON, Mass., September 9, 2015 – Sharon Merrill, a strategic communications advisory firm, today announced the launch of its newly redesigned website, InvestorRelations.com, coinciding with the 30th anniversary of the firm’s founding in 1985.

“We begin our fourth decade in business with an unchanged mission — helping our clients achieve their strategic goals,” said Sharon F. Merrill, the firm’s chairman, founder and chief executive officer. “This commitment has not only driven our success as an enterprise, it has formed the basis for client relationships that are remarkable for both their longevity and productivity. We extend our sincere appreciation to the hundreds of public and private companies that have honored and rewarded us with their trust for the past 30 years.”

“Our newly designed website reflects our corporate mission, culture and market position, and highlights our expanded set of practice areas,” said Maureen T. Wolff, the firm’s president and partner. “Building on our core expertise in investor relations, we have established Sharon Merrill as insightful strategic advisors on crisis and transaction communications, reputation management, and presentation and media training, serving an international client base. This growth is a testament to our team members’ extraordinary talents and length of service with the firm. We thank them for their commitment and dedication.”

Sharon Merrill’s high-touch approach to client relationships combines senior-level experience with unparalleled service. Senior team members not only work directly with and on behalf of clients day-to-day; they frequently speak at major conferences and help set corporate governance and communications best practices as leaders in industry organizations, including the National Investor Relations Institute, Financial Executives International and National Association of Corporate Directors. The firm’s 30-year record of growth and reputation for integrity stem from the team’s dedication to their craft and singular focus on helping clients achieve their business goals.

About Sharon Merrill

Sharon Merrill is an independent strategic advisory firm focused on investor relations, crisis communications, transaction communications, corporate communications, reputation management, and presentation and media training. Founded in 1985 and serving public and private client companies in North America and Europe, Sharon Merrill plans and executes strategic communications that resonate with stakeholders and deliver successful results. The Sharon Merrill team has earned wide recognition for communications thought leadership, and is distinguished by its longevity at the firm and longstanding client relationships – some of which extend more than 20 years.

To learn more about Sharon Merrill, please visit its website, www.InvestorRelations.com.


Sharon F. Merrill Honored with 2015 F. Gorham Brigham, Jr. Award by Boston Chapter of Financial Executives International

BOSTON, Mass., May 19, 2015 — Sharon Merrill (www.InvestorRelations.com), an investor relations and corporate communications strategic advisory firm, announced that Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sharon F. Merrill has received the 2015 F. Gorham Brigham, Jr. Award from the Boston Chapter of Financial Executives International (FEI).

For the past 10 years, the prestigious award has been given to an FEI Boston member who best exemplifies F. Gorham Brigham, Jr.’s exceptional standards in community leadership, personal integrity, commitment to the well-being of others, and dedication to the goals and objectives of FEI through mentoring and volunteerism.

FEI is a globally recognized leading organization that advances the successes of senior-level financial executives, financial organizations, and the financial profession.

“I am honored to be a part of this legacy, especially in Gorham Brigham’s 100th year,” Sharon Merrill said. “Gorham has been an irreplaceable inspiration and source of wisdom and guidance for me since the earliest days of my career. I have come to know and benefit first-hand from his longstanding dedication to both the financial profession and to community service, and appreciate it greatly.”

“This distinguished award recognizes the qualities that Sharon exemplifies and her leadership and volunteerism in the community,” said Maureen Wolff, President and Partner of Sharon Merrill Associates, Inc. “We have always known Sharon to value and uphold the highest levels of personal integrity and ethics, and to lead change by setting an example.”

About Sharon Merrill

Established in 1985, Sharon Merrill assists corporate clients across the U.S. and internationally in planning and executing critical communications that resonate with stakeholders and deliver desired results in virtually any situation an enterprise may confront. Practice areas include investor relations, crisis and transaction communications, reputation and issues management, presentation and media training, and social media. The Sharon Merrill team has earned wide recognition for corporate communications thought leadership, as well as dozens of industry awards. To learn more about Sharon Merrill, please visit the Company’s website at www.InvestorRelations.com, or its thought leadership blog at http://blog.investorrelations.com/.


Sharon Merrill Receives Awards for Investor Relations Excellence and Industry Leadership

BOSTON, Mass., June 20, 2013 — Sharon Merrill (www.InvestorRelations.com), a critical communications strategic advisory firm that is nationally recognized for its investor relations expertise, recently received awards for both excellence in investor relations and industry leadership.

The firm received a 2013 Bell Ringer Award from The Publicity Club of New England for an investor relations program it developed for a Fortune 500 client.The program included a highly successful investor day.The Publicity Club of New England’s Bell Ringer Awards recognize and honor excellence and achievement in the communications and public relations professions.In the past 17 years, the firm has won an award for investor relations in each of the 14 years it has entered a submission.

In addition, the National Investor Relations Institute (NIRI) recognized Maureen Wolff, President & Partner, with the NIRI National Volunteer of the Year Award. This award honors the NIRI member who best exemplifies the NIRI mission of advancing the practice of investor relations and the professional stature of NIRI members at the national level.At the awards ceremony, Jeff Morgan, NIRI President and Chief Executive Officer, said that Maureen “has shown true leadership skills during her tenure as a NIRI member. She has generously given a tremendous amount of her time and energy to NIRI, and is an everlasting NIRI advocate.”

Dennis Walsh, Vice President and Director of Social Media, received the 2012-2013 NIRI Individual Leadership Award for his work on the board of directors of the Boston chapter.Recipients of the leadership award were nominated by their chapter peers in recognition of their superior performance during the year.

“We are honored to be recognized for our work on behalf of clients as well as our contributions to the investor relations profession,” said Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Sharon F. Merrill. “The Bell Ringer award reflects the dedication of our experienced team of investor relations counselors to providing best-in-class services. It also is rewarding to see Maureen and Dennis recognized for their industry leadership and commitment to advancing the field of investor relations.”

About Sharon Merrill

Established in 1985, Sharon Merrill assists corporate clients across the U.S. and internationally in planning and executing critical communications that resonate with stakeholders and deliver desired results in virtually any situation an enterprise may confront. Practice areas include investor relations, crisis and transaction communications, reputation and issues management, presentation and media training, and social media. The Sharon Merrill team has earned wide recognition for corporate communications thought leadership, as well as dozens of industry awards. To learn more about Sharon Merrill, please visit the Company’s website at www.InvestorRelations.com, or its thought leadership blog at http://blog.investorrelations.com/.