Some Whole Foods Shareholders Want to Split C.E.O., Chair Titles

AUSTIN, Texas -- Leading natural and organic foods retailer Whole Foods Market, Inc. here said yesterday in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission that its shareholders will vote on a proposal to separate the chief executive and chairman titles during a March 5 meeting.

John P. Mackey currently holds the chairman and chief executive titles.

The shareholder proposal calls for an independent director who hasn't served as an executive officer of Whole Foods to serve as chairman of its board.

"Separating the roles of chairman and c.e.o. can promote greater management accountability to shareholders and lead to a more objective evaluation of our c.e.o.," said the writers of the proposal.

The Whole Foods board recommended that shareholders vote against the proposal, according to an Associated Press report.
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