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HP Chief Resigns During Sexual Harassment Investigation

Aug 09 2010

HP Chief Resigns During Sexual Harassment Investigation

Hewlett Packard (HPQ) recently announced the resignation of Mark Hurd, Chairman, President, and CEO of HP Corporation. Hurd's resignation comes following the sexual harassment claims leveled at the former HP executive and the HP company by a former contractor.

Upon investigation, HP determined the sexual harassment policy of its Corporation had not been violated, though it appeared there were violations against  the HP "Standards of Business Conduct".

In an interview, Hurd acknowledged he had failed to live out the standards and principles of trust, integrity, and respect that he had consistently espoused to others during his five years at HP.  He decided after speaking with board members, that he should step down so that a search committee could seek out new leadership for his replacement. 

Hurd met with the board and together they came to the difficult decision that he should resign.  The board and Hurd determined that it would be very difficult for him to continue effectively leading the HP Corporation in light of the violations.  They were quick to stress that the decision had not affected the overall operating performance of HP or its ongoing commitment to financial integrity.  In fact, Hurd went on to assure people that this would not affect HP's outlook for the future.  In his estimation, the corporation is healthy and strategically well positioned.  Both Hurd and the board believe that HP has a hardworking and talented team of executives that receive great support from their dedicated customer oriented work force.

The HP Director Board appointed Cathie Lesjak as CEO during the interim period.  Lesjak's 24-year record of accomplishment as CFO of the company should provide the company with stability as they move forward with HP's strategy and their goal of financial growth.  Lesjak sounded optimistic about the future of HP, and feels that  the strong preliminary numbers coming from the results of the third quarter validate her belief that the company is riding the strong momentum of the market.  Lesjak will continue to maintain the responsibilities of her CFO position throughout the interim period.

The Board of Directors has already established a committee to oversee the search for Hurd's replacement as CEO and Board Chair of the HP Corporation.

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