In an effort to establish a greater level of board independence, the trustees of the Putnam Funds of Boston last week passed over George Putnam III for the chairmanship and instead named John A. Hill chairman, said Laura McNamara, a company spokesperson.

Hill has no affiliation with the funds' investment manager, she said. The board named Putnam III president of the funds. He has served on the board of trustees since 1984.

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