A proposal to amend the company’s bylaws to require an independent director who has not served as chief executive to be the board chairman failed, with only 28.05% of the votes cast in favor and 70.8% against it, Dow Jones reported.
A proposal calling for independent board members without business ties to the firm drew only slightly more support, while a proposal requesting shareholder approval for certain pension benefits for senior executives was turned away by a 69.3% to 29.5% margin, according to Dow Jones, citing a preliminary count.
The proposals were supported by the company’s 23,000-member retirement group – the Association of US West Retirees – as well as by the California State Teacher’s Retirement System (CalSTRS), which holds about 4.48 million Qwest common shares. Two leading shareholder advisory firms, Institutional Shareholder Services and Glass Lewis & Co., also supported the proposals.
Qwest’s board had urged shareholders to vote against the proposals.
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