Small Voice Raised at PAM Shareholders Meeting

Small Voice Raised at PAM Shareholders Meeting

There was a miniature failed corporate overthrow that you might have missed earlier this month.

PAM Transport Inc. of Tontitown still has the same nine-man (zero women) board of directors, which is still led by Chairman and majority owner Matthew T. Moroun. All were reelected by substantial majorities at the company’s May 5 shareholders meeting.

A minority shareholders group, the California Public Employees’ Retirement System, had called for three of the directors, including Moroun, to be voted out as directors in a filing with the U.S. Securities & Exchange Commission on April 27.

CalPERS said its reason was “as a long-term shareholder of the company, we believe these three board members have demonstrated a lack of responsiveness on requests to address board composition related to diversity.”

PAM didn’t respond to a request for comment. A CalPERS’ spokeswoman told Whispers that the group has targeted corporations it believes “lack broadly defined diversity on their boards.”

PAM, the spokeswoman said, had been “non-responsive” to “multiple engagement efforts” about diversifying its board since July 2017.

CalPERS’ efforts were doomed to failure, mostly because Moroun owns or controls more than 68% of PAM shares. Also, CalPERS owns just 426 shares, according to its annual investment report.

CalPERS can claim a small moral victory, if it would like. Moroun received the fewest votes of any director with slightly more than 4.1 million; he owns or controls more than 3.9 million but 1.1 million votes were withheld.

The other two executives CalPERS urged to be voted out were Frederick Calderone (4.4 million votes for, 860,810 votes withheld) and former Stephens Inc. executive W. Scott Davis (5 million votes for, 243,921 votes withheld).

Another board member, Franklin McLarty of Little Rock, was reelected with nearly 5.1 million votes compared with 178,602 withheld.