What on earth possesses you to make a sexist joke during a meeting that is addressing the harassment of women in the workplace? Seriously bad judgement.
Billionaire businessman David Bonderman, a member of Uber’s board, resigned Tuesday after making what he called an “inappropriate” comment about women at a company-wide meeting that was aimed at addressing the harassment of women and other unprofessional conduct within the company.
The comment came as an interruption of fellow board member Arianna Huffington, who was explaining the benefits of having more female representation on Uber’s board.
“There’s a lot of data that shows when there’s one woman on the board, it’s much more likely that there will be a second woman on the board,” said Huffington, according to several people who heard the remarks.
“Actually,” Bonderman interjected, “what it shows is, it’s much likely there’ll be more talking.”
“Oh, come on, David,” Huffington said, in between awkward laughs. Addressing the crowd, she added, “Don’t worry, David will have a lot of talking to do, as well.”
In an email that was sent later to company employees, Bonderman said, “I want to apologize to my fellow board member for a disrespectful comment,” calling it “inappropriate.”
The full text of Bonderman’s apology to Uber staff: pic.twitter.com/YkTPKCjrj5
— Brian Fung (@b_fung) June 13, 2017
Bonderman, the 74-year-old co-founder of a private equity firm, also apologized personally to Huffington.
“David has apologized to all Uber employees for a remark that was totally inappropriate and against the new culture we are building at Uber,” Huffington said in a statement.
A few hours later, Bonderman resigned and released this statement: “Uber is examining the issues with its culture, and making significant changes and working to right what has been done wrong, which is extremely important for the future of the company. I do not want my comments to create distraction as Uber works to build a culture of which we can be proud. I need to hold myself to the same standards that we’re asking Uber to adopt.”
Huffington also issued a statement praising Bonderman for his decision, “I appreciate David doing the right thing for Uber at this time of critical cultural changes at the company.” More