From: John Hicks
Sent: June 15, 2006
Subject: File No. S7-03-04

The directors of a mutual fund are the essence of the fund itself, and too many large funds erroneously treat the advisor as if the advisor and the fund were one and the same. I agree with your previous attempt at a rule that would require at least 75% of directors, and the chair, to be independent. I would prefer to see none of the advisor staff on the board. There is entirely too much conflict of interest between the advisor and shareholders to allow the advisor to control the board, either by numbers or by the chair.

John Hicks
1120 Morningwood Lane
Great Falls, VA 22066