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Next, an affidavit of Ms. Sally Lent, an employee of Broadridge Financial Solutions, as to the distribution beginning on March 14, 2012 to our shareholders of record as of February 27 of a notice regarding the availability of proxy materials for the annual meeting to be held on April 25, 2012 or paper copies of those proxy materials. The notice informed our registered shareholders of the availability online of the notice of meeting, the proxy statement for this meeting, and the 2011 annual report to shareholders.Shareholders were also informed how to obtain these proxy materials in paper form or by e-mail, at no charge. The notice disclosed the date, time, and location of this meeting, as well as the items to be voted on. Copies of the proxy materials have been posted on the internet and provided in paper form to those shareholders who requested them. I will file these materials with the minutes of the meeting. Jim? Jim Cracchiolo – Chairman and Chief Executive Officer The Inspector of Elections has reported the existence of a quorum, so we will proceed with the business of this meeting, which I now call to order. First, I'm pleased to introduce my colleagues on the Board who are with us today. Once I have introduced them all, I ask that you please join me in a warm round of applause in recognition of their efforts on behalf of Ameriprise Financial and its shareholders. Will the directors please stand as I call your name and please remain standing until I introduced you all? Siri S. Marshall; Lon R. Greenberg, our newest director who joined the Board last year; Warren D. Knowlton; W. Walker Lewis; Jeffrey Noddle; H. Jay Sarles; Robert F. Sharpe, Jr.; William H. Turner, please join me in giving our Board a warm round of applause.
Next, I would like to introduce as a group, the members of the executive leadership team of Ameriprise Financial who are here today. The Board and I rely heavily upon the skills and experiences to let these talented officers to help run the company. I ask the executive leadership team to all stand and please join me and the Board in giving them a round of applause.I would also like to acknowledge Ameriprise Financial employees and advisors who are here with us today or listening on the web. Our company is in a terrific position today because of your hard work and dedication to our clients. On behalf of the Board of Directors, the executive leadership team, I sincerely thank each of you. Now, I am going to turn it back to Tom for the statement of order of business and the opening of the polls. Tom Moore – Corporate Secretary and Chief Governance Officer Thank you, Jim. To ensure the orderly conduct of the business of this meeting, the Board of Directors has adopted the order of business set forth in the agenda provided to each person as he or she entered. Accompanying the agenda are the meeting procedures approved by the Board of Directors. We ask in fairness to all of those present that you please honor these rules. The three items of business for today’s meeting are: first, the election of four directors to serve until the company’s 2013 Annual Meeting or until their successors are elected and qualified; second, a non-binding and advisory vote to approve the compensation of the named executive officers; finally, the ratification of PricewaterhouseCoopers by the Audit Committee to serve as the company’s independent auditors for the fiscal year ending December 31, 2012. The company has not received notice from any shareholders, as required under its by-laws, of any other matter to be considered at today’s meeting. And therefore no other proposal or nomination may be properly introduced by shareholders. On behalf of the Chairman, I now declare the polls open for voting at this Annual Meeting. If you wish to vote at the meeting and have not yet done so, you may deliver your ballot to the Inspector of Elections. Inspector, please stand in order to identify yourself. Thank you. Read the rest of this transcript for free on seekingalpha.com