April 30, 2012
External Affairs Branch
Robert Udall Glazier, Deputy Executive Officer
Brad Pacheco, Chief, Office of Public Affairs
Graco Shareowners Back CalPERS Proposal for Majority Vote in Board Elections
SACRAMENTO, CA – The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) announced today that Graco shareowners strongly supported a proposal by the pension fund that advises the company to adopt a majority vote standard for board candidates in uncontested elections. Approximately 83 percent of Graco shareowners voted for the good governance measure.
“This is the third consecutive year Graco shareowners have overwhelmingly given their seal of approval on a fundamental right of shareowner democracy to elect directors by a majority vote,” said Anne Simpson, the Senior Portfolio Manager who heads the CalPERS corporate governance program. “Majority voting is a basic good governance practice and a hallmark of accountability.”
Proposal 6 at the company’s annual shareowners’ meeting asked the company to replace its plurality vote rule in uncontested Board of Director elections with election by a majority vote. The plurality standard, which allows uncontested candidates to be elected by a single “For” vote, would be retained for contested elections. The company confirmed that the proposal passed.
About 80 percent of the companies in the S&P 500 and 60 percent of the companies in the Russell 1000 have adopted some form of majority voting.
CalPERS has engaged 81 of its largest public equity holdings and the companies have agreed to introduce majority voting.
The pension fund owned 207,761 shares of Graco common stock on the Feb. 21, 2012 record date.
CalPERS, with assets of approximately $235 billion, is the largest public pension fund in the U.S. It administers retirement benefits for more than 1.6 million California State, local government, and public school employees, retirees, and their families on behalf of more than 3,000 public employers, and health benefits for more than 1.3 million enrollees. The average CalPERS pension benefit is $2,332 per month. The average benefit for those who retired in the recent fiscal year ended June 30, 2011, is $3,065 per month. For more about CalPERS, visit www.calpers.ca.gov.