Jackie Clegg

Jackie M. Clegg has decided not to stand for re-election to the board at Brookdale Senior Living’s annual shareholder meeting this year, the company announced Monday. Brookdale did not give a reason for the decision.

Clegg, who joined the board of directors in November 2005 as an independent director, is the company’s longest-serving current director and recently had been singled out by an activist investor as being an impediment to the company’s progress.

In a statement, Clegg said, “It has been a pleasure and an honor to serve Brookdale and its shareholders during such a dynamic period, and I am excited to see how our efforts will result in lasting shareholder value creation for years to come.”

Clegg is the managing partner of strategic consulting firm Clegg International Consultants. From 1997 to 2001, she was vice chair of the board of directors and first vice president of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, the country’s official export credit institution, having been nominated by then-President Bill Clinton and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. She was the institution’s chief operating officer from 1999 to 2000.

“Jackie brought significant transactional, financial and governance expertise to the company during a period of rapid change in the senior living environment,” Brookdale President and CEO Lucinda “Cindy” Baier said in a statement. “Her vision and voice helped guide Brookdale as it became the nation’s leading operator of senior living communities, and her leadership will benefit the company and its shareholders for years to come.”

Baier noted Clegg’s recent tenure as chair of Brookdale’s Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee. In the position, she “led our board through challenging transitions and built an environment for excellence in our company and our communities,” the CEO said.

Clegg’s service was not without controversy, however.

In a public letter in August, activist investor Jonathan Litt, founder and chief investment officer of Land & Buildings, said Clegg had “a dated knowledge of best corporate governance practices as well as a strong bias for entrenchment.” Litt recommended that the board “reevaluate her inclusion on any committees” and not re-nominate her at the company’s 2019 annual shareholder meeting because she has “overseen material shareholder value destruction at Brookdale.”

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