The directors of Delek US Holdings this week voted to add a veteran technologist to their ranks — a move that came just days after the company’s largest shareholder said it wants a say in naming three new board members.
In a statement, Delek Chairman, President and CEO Uzi Yemin said the addition of Laurie Tolson — which grows the board to eight members — helps the Brentwood-based oil refiner and marketer progress toward its 2022 goals of having 30 percent of its directors be women or racially diverse. Tolson, 60, last year founded a digital transformation strategies consulting firm after leaving GE Transportation, where she had been chief digital officer for two and a half years. Before that, she worked nearly five years at global manufacturing conglomerate ABB, most recently as head of its enterprise software group.
“Laurie's background in technology adds yet another aspect of diversity and perspective to our board and complements the company's drive to utilize technology to enhance operations,” Yemin said. “We strongly believe technology advancements will lead to progressively improving efficiency, reliability and safety of our workforce, and Laurie's background will assist us in our journey.”
Tolson, who also spent five years at Dell and more than a decade at Sun Microsystems, was elected last November to the board of Fenix Marine Services, which runs a large container terminal in the Port of Los Angeles.
Tolson’s appointment comes on the heels of CVR Energy, which is controlled by investor Carl Icahn, having sent a letter to Yemin and his fellow Delek directors calling for major changes to the company’s strategies and governance practices. CVR has for several years been rumored to want to buy Delek — its letter acknowledges that was the initial plan — but President and CEO David Lamp wrote last week that is no longer the case. Instead, Lamp said, among other things, the local company’s board is in need of “new and independent perspectives,” among other things.
Shares of Delek (Ticker: DK) fell 2.6 percent to $20.54 Thursday. Over the past six months, they have risen about 10 percent.