Conn. Treasurer to Vote Against Wal-Mart Board

May 24, 2012 ( - Connecticut State Treasurer Denise L. Nappier is following other state pension fund leaders in rallying against board members at Wal-Mart Stores.

In a May 15 letter sent to Wal-Mart’s presiding director, James Breyer, Nappier called on the company’s board of directors to report to shareholders by June 15 what they are doing to reinforce the company’s legal and regulatory compliance.  “At a minimum, the board  must  determine  who  was  responsible  for  failing  to  keep  the  board  informed  and remove them from the company,” Nappier said in the letter.     

The letter is in response to reports that members of Wal-Mart’s board of directors and senior management were allegedly complicit in legal and regulatory misconduct in connection with bribery by officials at its Mexico subsidiary.  Treasurer Nappier said she will vote against the re-election of Wal-Mart Audit Committee members to the board of directors as well as CEO Michael Duke, Former CEO H. Lee Scott and board chair S. Robson Walton.    

California’s two largest pension funds also recently announced they would vote against re-election of the board members (see “CalSTRS Seeking Changes in Wal-Mart’s Corporate Governance”) as did New York City’s pension funds (see “NYC Pensions to Challenge Wal-Mart Board”).  

The $24-billion Connecticut Retirement Plans and Trust Funds (CRPTF) owns Wal-Mart stocks and bonds valued at $38 million.