Restructure This! Episode 7: The Role of the Independent Director in Chapter 11


The appointment of an independent director to the board of a distressed company has become a common strategy in the chapter 11 playbook. What is the role—and value—of an independent director in an in-court restructuring? Oftentimes appointed by parties in interest, are they in fact independent? Today we discuss this topic and related issues with John Dubel, CEO of Dubel & Associates, LLC, who has served as an independent director for numerous large scale companies in financial distress.

John has over 35 years of experience in the restructuring space and has worked on many chapter 11 cases, advising both debtors and creditors. His independent director roles in recent chapter 11s include, but are not limited to, Alpha Media Holdings LLC, Purdue Pharma Inc, Highland Capital Management, LP, and WMC Mortgage, LLC. John has also served as CEO and Chief Restructuring Officer of SunEdison, Inc. and as CFO of WorldCom, Inc.

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What We Discussed in This Episode:

  • The types of decisions that a chief restructuring officer or independent director typically makes at the financially struggling companies
  • The driver for the need of independent directors in modern restructurings
  • Whether the recent criticisms of independent directors in chapter 11s is warranted
  • Whether the filing of retention applications for the independent director or soliciting creditors’ input on who is appointed would address concerns re the independent director model in complex chapter 11 cases

Contact Information:

John Dubel

This podcast is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not to be construed as legal advice specific to your circumstances. If you need help with any legal matter, be sure to consult with an attorney regarding your specific needs.


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