In meeting on company culture, David Bonderman said theres likely to be more talking when Arianna Huffington mentioned having more women on board
Venture capitalist David Bonderman resigned from Ubers board of directors on Tuesday, after apologizing for making a sexist statement during an all-staff meeting earlier in the working day about reforming the companys culture.
The resignation goes at a critical time for the nearly $70 bn ride-hail company. On Tuesday, CEO Travis Kalanick announced that he would take an indefinite leave of absence and the company released the results of an investigation into allegations of sexual harassment, gender discrimination, and a toxic work environment.
During the session presenting the report to Uber employees on Tuesday, Bonderman interrupted his fellow members of the security council Arianna Huffington with a sexist remark, according to an audio recording of the session obtained by Yahoo Finance.
Huffington said that data showed that once a company had one female on its committee, it was more likely to have a second.
Then Bonderman interjected: Actually, what it displays is that its much more likely to be more talking. He subsequently sent an email to the staff apologizing for his disrespectful comment.
In a statement released on Tuesday evening, Bonderman called his commentary careless, inappropriate, and inexcusable and said he understood the destructive effect it had.
I do not want my comments to generate distraction as Uber works to build a culture of which we can be proud, he added. I need to hold myself to the same standards that were asking Uber to adopt. Therefore, I have decided to be removed from Ubers board of directors, effective tomorrow morning.
Bondermans commentary came as Uber has tried to reform a corporate culture that has become an exemplar of boorish Silicon Valley behavior and disregard for basic ethical standards.
On Sunday, the board voted unanimously to approve the recommendations contained in the report, which was prepared by the law firm of former US attorney Eric Holder. The report was commissioned after a former Uber engineer published a viral blog post containing allegations of widespread sexual harassment and gender discrimination, as well as the institutional failures to handle such matters.
I appreciate David doing the right thing for Uber at this time of critical culture changes at the company, Huffington said in a statement.
Earlier this week, Uber appointed Nestl executive Wan Ling Martello to the board. Martello is the second woman, after Huffington, to serve as an Uber director.
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