The Association of Clinical Research Professionals

Governance Committee

The ACRP Governance Committee holds the responsibility to enable the Association Board of Trustees (ABoT) to operate at the highest level and make the best use of their collective capacity through ongoing review and recommendations that will enhance the quality, efficiency, and future viability of the ABoT. For further information on the Governance Committee’s goals, objectives, key responsibilities, and meeting schedule, please refer to the Committee Charge below.

The Governance Committee is a committee of the ACRP Board and appointments are restricted to Trustees currently serving on the ABoT.

2020 Governance Committee Members

Ernest Prentice, PhD

Professor Emeritus
Department of Genetics, Cell Biology and Anatomy
University of Nebraska Medical Center
Omaha, NE

John Neal, CPA (inactive), BS, CRCP
(Vice Chair, Ex-Officio, Immediate Past ABoT Chair)
Founder and Chairman
PCRS Network, LLC
Las Vegas, NV

Erika Stevens, MA
(Ex-Officio, ABoT Vice Chair)
Recherche Transformation Rapide, LLC
Lumberton, NJ

Catherine Shuster, BS, MS, BChE
(Ex-Officio as ABoT Public Member)
Boynton Beach, FL

Anne Blanchard, CCRA
Clinical Research Executive Consultant
Buenos Aires, Argentina

Christina Brennan, MD, MBA, CCRC
Vice President, Clinical Research
Northwell Health
Lake Success, NY

Christine Senn, PhD, CCRC, CPI, ACRP-CP, FACRP
Chief Implementation and Operations Officer
IACT Health
Columbus, GA

ACRP Staff Liaison:
Christy Herz
Director of Governance

ACRP Governance Committee Charge

ACRP’s Governance Committee ensures that the Association Board of Trustees (ABoT) operates at its highest level and makes the best use of its collective capacity through the ongoing review of its composition, knowledge, effectiveness, leadership capacity and accountability.

Goals and Objectives

Board Composition:
Assess the current and anticipated needs for board composition and competencies through an annual expertise assessment. Analyze assessment results to determine the knowledge, attributes, skills, abilities and influences needed to accomplish future work of the Board. Develop a board profile as it should evolve over time. Assist the Nominating Committee in the recruitment of Board nominees.

Board Knowledge:
Oversee and implement an orientation process for new and returning Trustees. Monitor best practices in governance to inform Trustees on their roles and responsibilities.

Board Effectiveness:
Review the ACRP Bylaws every three years. Review ACRP policies as per the schedule outlined in each policy. Assess the overall structure of the Board, its processes, and meeting performance/participation. Identify areas in need of improvement and make applicable recommendations to the Chair and entire board, when appropriate.

Leads the performance assessment of Trustees eligible to renew their seats on ABoT. The Committee will conduct the assessment following procedures in ACRP Process for the Review of Renewing Trustees.

ACRP staff will provide the Governance Committee with reports on Trustee attendance at all ABoT meetings. These reports will be added to the agenda for the Governance Committee’s review at each meeting. For Trustees who miss two or more board meetings in one year or otherwise fail to meet participation expectations, the Governance Committee may make recommendations to the ABoT on an acceptable plan of action. The Governance Committee will assist the Board in ensuring that agendas are in alignment with the ACRP’s strategic objectives.

Board Leadership:
Review Leadership Responsibilities Descriptions (LRDs) as indicated on the review schedule for LRDs and further refine the governance role of the Board and expectations of individual board members. Support Trustee development by conducting performance assessments as needed (see Board Performance Evaluation Policy.)

Board Accountability:
At the Direction of the Board, oversee, manage and enforce the Board Conflict of Interest Policy and Management Process.

The scope of the Governance Committee is to ensure board effectiveness by assessing the needs for future board composition; maximizing Trustee participation and performance; drafting and maintaining board policies; implementing board development and growth opportunities throughout the year; ensuring all Trustees receive an initial and ongoing orientation; and leading an assessment process for individual Trustees and the collective board.

It is critical that committee members devote sufficient time to participate in and contribute to committee activities.

Meeting Schedule
Teleconferences are generally held on a monthly basis. Face-to-face meetings are scheduled if needed in conjunction with previously scheduled face-to-face meetings of the ABoT. All meetings will be supported financially by ACRP.

Committee Members

Committee members are appointed by the ABoT and consist of:

  • Three to seven members of the ABoT, excluding the Chair of the ABoT.
  • The Immediate Past Chair of ABoT shall serve ex-officio as Vice Chair of the Governance Committee.
  • The Vice Chair of the ABoT shall serve ex-officio on the Governance Committee.
  • The ABoT Public Member shall serve ex-officio on the Governance Committee.
  • Leadership will entail a Governance Committee Chair.
  • The Executive Director shall be invited to all Governance Committee meetings in a non-voting capacity

Role of Chair
The Governance Committee Chair is responsible for leading and facilitating the work of the Committee. The Governance Committee Chair will regularly report to the ABoT to provide an update on the committee’s work and activities. The Governance Committee Chair will keep the ABoT Chair apprised of committee operations and governance activities as necessary.

Role of Vice Chair
In the absence of the Governance Committee Chair, the Governance Committee Vice Chair is responsible for leading and facilitating the work of the committee. While it is the intent to have succession planning within committees through mentoring of all committee members including the Vice-Chair, it should be understood that based on the needs of the committee, the Vice Chair may not automatically ascend to the Chair position at the completion of his/ her term as Vice Chair.

Role of the Committee Staff Liaison
The Committee Staff Liaison provides all necessary support to the Chair, Vice-Chair, and all the committee members to facilitate the work of the committee, including setting up meetings and helping to prepare the materials.

Staff Liaisons: ACRP Executive Director and Associate Director, Governance

Term Length:

  • With the exception of ex-officio committee members, each member will serve a one-year term and, based upon performance, may serve sequential one-year terms subject to the approval of ABoT. Ex-officio members’ terms are subject to their term of service on the board.
  • If an individual has served two terms, he or she may be appointed as Chair for an additional one-year term. Those who have not completed two terms may also be appointed as Chair at any time during their service on the committee.

Skills and Expertise:

  • Skills and expertise will be determined annually by the committee as a whole, with guidance from the Committee Chair and Staff Liaison.
  • Due to the nature of this committee, members must be comfortable conducting sensitive discussions with individual Trustees and the ABoT as a whole, as well as exhibiting leadership in holding the Board accountable for best practices in governance.

Related Working Groups/Committees: ACRP Nominating Committee


  • A report of activity will be submitted to the ABoT at each board meeting
  • The committee’s work will be aligned with the ACRP Strategic Plan.
  • The Chair and staff liaison are responsible for providing a committee orientation.


  • Conduct performance assessments of individual Trustees and of the ABoT as a whole.
  • Develop and conduct the annual ABoT Professional Expertise Assessment Survey and communicate identified needs to the Nominating Committee.
  • Create a board development plan that includes optimal board size, composition, and responsibilities.
  • Work with the Nominating Committee to recruit Board nominees.
  • Conduct orientations for new Trustees.
  • Develop/revise necessary policies as identified by Trustees and/or ACRP staff.
  • Ensures that the Executive Committee is performing an annual review of the Executive Director’s performance. The Immediate Past Chair as a member of both the Executive and Governance Committees will provide reporting on this process

Approved by ABoT on November 18, 2017
Revised by ABoT on March 16, 2018