Janus Capital Group Inc. appointed two independent directors to its board yesterday. To make room on the board, Helen Young Hayes, whose term expires in May, will step down, the company said. She was a managing director of investments and managed Janus' international stock funds before she resigned last April.

Michael D. Bills, the founder of Bluestem Asset Management, and Deborah R. Gatzek, a former member of the executive committee at the mutual fund firm Franklin Resources Inc., were added to the Janus board.

With the two outsiders, seven of Janus' 10 board members are now independent. The Securities and Exchange Commission has recommended that three-fourths of a fund company's board be independent.

Gatzek was most recently chief counsel of ING Americas mutual funds. Previously, she was a special counsel in the SEC's enforcement division and regional counsel at the NASD. Bills was the chief investment officer for the University of Virginia's $2 billion endowment.

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