This excerpt taken from the HIW 10-K filed Dec 22, 2005.
At least a majority of our directors and all of the members of the audit committee and the compensation and governance committee must meet the test of independence as defined by the New York Stock Exchange. The New York Stock Exchange standards provide that to qualify as an independent director, in addition to satisfying certain bright-line criteria, the Board of Directors must affirmatively determine that a director has no material relationship with us (either directly or as a partner, shareholder or officer of an organization that has a relationship with the Company). The Board of Directors has determined that any relationship or arrangement between us and one or more affiliates of a director that does not require disclosure pursuant to Item 404 of SEC Regulation S-K does not, by itself, preclude a determination of independence (except with respect to members of the audit committee). The Board of Directors has determined that each of Messrs. Adler, Graham, Kaplan, Orr, Sloan, Smith and Vandiver and Ms. Callison and Ms. Kellett satisfies the bright-line criteria and that none has a relationship with us that would interfere with such persons ability to exercise independent judgment as a member of the Board. Therefore, we believe that each of such directors is independent under the New York Stock Exchange rules.