Founded in 2008, the Directors and Chief Risk Officers group (“the DCRO”) was formed to be a resource to board members, chief risk officers, and other c-level executives whose work was focused on the governance of risk-taking at their organizations. The mission of the group was to advance the practice of risk governance around the world. 

As guidance to boards, investors, and stakeholders, DCRO members collaboratively developed the DCRO Qualified Risk Director Guidelines and various Guiding Principles on Risk Governance, all of which are available for free download. 

From early in the financial crisis until the spring of 2015, the DCRO published the Crisis Sentiment Index - a collaborative, real-time analysis of global, regional, and local risk conditions from the perspective of board members and c-level executives around the world. The Crisis Sentiment Index provided a timely analysis of trends in credit availability, financial market (in)stability, and general economic conditions across various industries in diverse regions of the world. The Crisis Sentiment Index proved prescient and valuable as an indicator of progress through, as well as the end of, the global financial financial crisis.

The DCRO also regularly facilitated member interaction via conference calls, resource sharing, in-person roundtables, benchmarking research and more. This collaborative work brought together perspectives of nearly 2,500 members, from more than 120 countries, as well as from diverse industries, financial, non-financial, for-profit, and not-for-profit.

In 2018 and 2019, through the DCRO Exemplar Awards, the DCRO recognized several individuals for their global leadership in risk governance and the advancement of governance practices.

DCRO Guiding Principles

The documents below were developed through the collaborative efforts of leading chief risk officers, board members, and other c-level executives as a resource to be used in the advancement of risk governance practices. Contributions were made by members from more than 20 countries on five continents. Click on the images below to download a PDF file.

Qualified Risk Director Guidelines


Identifying Qualified Risk Directors to serve on Boards - Guidance from a  select committee of board directors and chief risk officers on how to  better govern risk through the identification and recruitment of board  members with special risk governance expertise. 

Guiding Principles for Board Risk Committees


Board Risk Committee Best Practices - DCRO Members from 13 countries  collaborated to develop these best practices for board Risk Committees.  Includes guidance on how to determine the need for a board Risk  Committee and how it best functions.

Guiding Principles for Cyber Risk Governance


 Cyber Risk Governance Principles for Boards of Directors - Gudiance from  an esteemed international committee to provide boards of directors with  direction on governing this existential risk and for external parties  to evaluate boards' practices.

Guiding Principles for Compensation Committees


Compensation Committee Best Practices - Guidance from an international  group of board directors, chief risk officers, and other C-level  executives on how to best govern the link between pay, performance, and  risk via board Compensation (Remuneration) Committees. 

DCRO Exemplar Award Winners

 Through the DCRO Exemplar Awards, the DCRO recognized several individuals for their global leadership in risk governance and the advancement of governance practices Pictured below from top left to bottom right: Andrea Bonime-Blanc, Martin M. Coyne II, Jon Lukomnik, Anne Simpson, Knut Kjaer, Richard L. Sandor, Anne Sheehan, James Lam, James McRitchie, Ann Yerger,  Florence Anglès, Todd Davies, Darlene Halwas, Laurie Brooks, Carol Gray, W. Ronald Dietz.

Qualities of a DCRO Exemplar


  • Demonstrates, articulates, and expects the highest ethical standards
  • Recognized by the markets, or in other public media, for their high professional standards
  • Demonstrates the importance of understanding and governing risk at an advanced level 


  • Demonstrated work to advance the use and governance of risk in pursuit of corporate goals
  • Recognized for contributions to innovations in risk governance
  • Takes unique and effective approaches to improved risk governance 


  • Exhibits and maintains courage and leadership, doing what is best for those who depend upon them for success
  • Demonstrated trust from their peers, markets, or other public media
  • Individual excellence demonstrated beyond what is typical for their industry or field 


  • Devotion of time and resources to the continual improvement of risk governance within their organization 
  • Devotion of time and resources to the continual improvement of risk governance outside of their own organization via professional  associations or other avenues 

The Founder of the DCRO

David R. Koenig

David formed the DCRO as a non-commercial, all-volunteer initiative and managed its activities from the beginning, keeping true to its original goals. David has been at the forefront of innovation in the governance of risk-taking at traditional and new technology companies, was named as one of the winners of the inaugural M-prize for management innovation in the category of "reinventing leadership," is the recipient of the 2008 PRMIA Higher Standard Award, and has been invited to speak at more than 100 events on five continents. David has served on numerous for-profit and non-profit boards and has advised board members and executives around the world. His leadership roles include board chair, chief executive officer, and other senior executive responsibilities.  He is the author of the critically acclaimed book Governance Reimagined: Organizational Design, Risk, and Value Creation and is a member of the Editorial Board of the Journal of Risk Management in Financial Institutions. David has also written numerous articles and chapters in textbooks and was one of the founders of the Professional Risk Managers' International Association (PRMIA).