Mark Hurd – the Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of HP – resigned on Friday. He's been replaced on an interim basis by the company's CFO, Cathie Lesjak. Ms Lesjak says she doesn't want the permanent CEO role but will serve as interim CEO until a new chief executive has been found.
Mr Hurd’s decision was made after an investigation of a claim of sexual harassment by a former contractor to HP. The investigation determined there was no violation of HP’s sexual harassment policy but did find violations of HP’s Standards of Business Conduct.
In a statement, Mark Hurd said "As the investigation progressed, I realized there were instances in which I did not live up to the standards and principles of trust, respect and integrity that I have espoused at HP and which have guided me throughout my career. After a number of discussions with members of the board, I will move aside and the board will search for new leadership. This is a painful decision for me to make after five years at HP, but I believe it would be difficult for me to continue as an effective leader at HP and I believe this is the only decision the board and I could make at this time. I want to stress that this in no way reflects on the operating performance or financial integrity of HP."
MercuryNews.com has subsequently named Jodie Fisher as being the woman involved in the case, quoting her as saying "Mark and I never had an affair or intimate sexual relationship" and "I was surprised and saddened that Mark Hurd lost his job over this. That was never my intention".