Walmart director Daft leaves board of another company in trouble

Douglas Daft

Walmart Board of Directors member Doug Daft suddenly stepped down from the Board of Directors of Green Mountain Coffee Roasters last week, citing “personal reasons.” It’s been a rough time for the coffee company lately. As Reuters reported, Green Mountain is facing “concerns of slowing growth and allegations of accounting malpractices.” The company’s lead director and its founder and former chairman were just demoted from leadership positions on the company’s board after violating company policies about internal stock trading.

Of course, we don’t know the specific details of why Daft left the Green Mountain board, but industry analysts pointed out that it doesn’t look good when board members leave in the midst of turmoil. Perhaps, in light of accusations of systemic bribery at Walmart (and allegations of a subsequent cover-up by high-level executives), Daft decided that he could only handle one crisis-riddled corporate board at a time.

Interestingly, back in 2004, Daft retired from his position as CEO from Coca-Cola seven months earlier than he had originally announced. During his tenure as CEO, the company faced multiple difficulties, including a management drain and thousands of layoffs, investigation by the FBI and SEC for fraud, and a shareholder lawsuit that accused Daft of making statements about the company that were too optimistic.

Green Mountain is the second public company board that Daft has left in recent weeks; he quit the board of McGraw Hill when his term expired in late April.

What do you think?