The Association of U S West Retirees



Qwest shareholders reject proposals
By Andy Vuong, Staff Writer
Denver Post
Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Article Last Updated: 05/23/2007 01:03:00 PM MDT

Qwest shareholders defeated proposals today that would have given them an advisory vote on executive compensation and tied stock option awards to the company's performance.

They also rejected two other measures that would have required the Qwest to seek shareholder approval on supplemental retirement plans for executives and to separate the roles of chairman and chief executive.

The results were announced today at Denver-based Qwest's annual shareholder meeting, which featured a protest from shareholders about the company's executive pay policies.

More than dozen Qwest/US West retirees and shareholders held signs before the meeting to encourage the company to give shareholders a say on pay.  Joining them was shareholder advocate Scott Adams, who was dressed in a chicken suit holding a sign that read, "Qwest Don't Be A Chicken - Give Shareholders a Say on Pay."

Sixty-seven percent of stockholders were against the so-called "say on pay" proposal that would given them an advisory vote annually on pay packages awarded to top executives.  Twenty percent voted for the proposal and 14 percent abstained.

Eighty-two percent of investors voted against a measure that would have required the board to link 75 percent of future equity compensation to the company's performance.

The proposal on retirement plans was defeated by a 68 to 32 percent margin.  Eighty-two percent of shareholders voted against splitting the roles of chairman and CEO.  Dick Notebaert currently serves in both roles.

The meeting, held at the Grand Hyatt in downtown Denver, lasted about an hour and a half.

Staff writer Andy Vuong can be reached at 303-954-1209 or