This excerpt taken from the BAC DEF 14A filed Mar 18, 2009.
The Board is composed at all times of at least a majority of directors who are independent. As described below, the Board has determined that 16 of the Boards 18 director nominees, or approximately 89%, are independent directors. The Board has adopted categorical standards to assist it in making the annual affirmative determination of each directors independence status. These Director Independence Categorical Standards (Categorical Standards) are attached as Appendix A and posted on our website. A director will be considered independent if he or she meets the requirements of the Categorical Standards and the criteria for independence set forth from time to time in the listing standards of the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
The Board has evaluated the relationships between each current director (and his or her immediate family members and related interests) and Bank of America and its subsidiaries. The Board has affirmatively determined, upon the recommendation of the Corporate Governance Committee, that each of the following directors is independent under the Categorical Standards and the NYSE listing standards: William Barnet, III; Frank P. Bramble, Sr.; Virgis W. Colbert; John T. Collins; Gary L. Countryman; Tommy R. Franks; Monica C. Lozano; Walter E. Massey; Thomas J. May; Patricia E. Mitchell; Joseph W. Prueher; Charles O. Rossotti; Thomas M. Ryan; O. Temple Sloan, Jr.; Meredith R. Spangler; Robert L. Tillman; and Jackie M. Ward.
The Board has determined that Charles K. Gifford and Kenneth D. Lewis do not meet the independence standards. Mr. Lewis is our Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Gifford was employed by Bank of America or a predecessor and receives compensation from the Corporation which exceeds the threshold set forth in the Categorical Standards.
In making its independence determinations, the Board considered that in the ordinary course of business the Corporation and its subsidiaries may provide commercial and investment banking, financial advisory and other services to some of the independent directors, or members of the directors families, and to business organizations and individuals associated with them. The Board also considered that in the ordinary course of business some business organizations with which an independent director is, or members of the directors family are, associated may provide products and services to the Corporation and its subsidiaries. The Board has determined that, based on the information available to the Board, none of these relationships was material.