Patti Hart, the CEO of International Entertainment for Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO), is planning to step down from her position in amid of the recent controversy.
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Apparently, she was one of the executives responsible for vetting chief executive office Scott Thompson, who may or may not be qualified for his position. Shareholder Third Point has made accusations against both Hart and Thompson stating that both of them are misrepresenting their educational backgrounds in order to gain employment with the search engine company.
Thompson originally reported that he graduated from Stonehill College back in 1978 with a degree in accounting and computer science. The educational institution said he obtained a degree in accounting but not computer science, a program which was later added in 1983.
Hart claimed she earned a degree in marketing and economics from Illinois State University but it turns out that she just earned a degree in business administration.
The news comes after Hart refused to stand for a re-election. She was one of the member of the board who selected Thompson for the chief executive position. According to DealBook, Yahoo announced the creation of a three-person committee to investigate the hiring of Thompson and his educational record. The committee features Alfred Amoroso, John Hayes, and Thomas McInerney. They’ve already started the investigation process.
This scandal paints a bad light on Yahoo and their business practices. Who alerted Third Point to investigate Yahoo in the first place remains unknown.
Just last Monday, Third Point demanded that Yahoo hand over their records regarding the hiring process of Thompson. Shortly after that, the CEO sent apology emails to Yahoo employees.
It’s probably a smart move that Patti is leaving her position in Yahoo and it’s probably only a matter of days until Thompson is forced to resign. It’s the kind of scandal that makes you wonder how many other companies have unqualified executives as leaders. Fortunately, I doubt this is a huge concern for most companies.