CalSTRS Statement on Occidental Petroleum Shareholders’ Meeting Results

Statement Ricardo Duran

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA – Despite California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS) support, Occidental Petroleum Board Chairman Ray Irani failed to receive a majority of shareholders’ support. The vote took place today at the company’s annual meeting in Los Angeles.

CalSTRS Director of Corporate Governance Anne Sheehan issued the following statement following the vote:

“We supported Mr. Irani for another year as Chairman of the Occidental board, given his role in helping the board progress in developing a succession plan and the board’s commitment to name an independent chair after he retires in 2014.

“However, Mr. Irani failed to garner the support of a majority of shareholders and we respect their position and collective decision.  We are hopeful the company has settled their leadership issues and will continue working to position the company to a more stable and productive long-term course with a focus on increasing shareholder value.

“We continue to support a permanent separation of the Chair and CEO roles, and believe Oxy will honor its agreement to place the issue to a vote of shareholders next year. CalSTRS remains concerned about the company’s compensation practices, which is why we voted no on the compensation proposal at the meeting. We will be communicating with the company about our specific ongoing concerns with their compensation structure.”

As of April 28, 2013, CalSTRS held 3.1 million shares of Occidental Petroleum. The market value of those holdings was set at $272 million. That ownership stake accounted for about 0.39 percent of outstanding Occidental shares.

The California State Teachers’ Retirement System, with a portfolio valued at $163.7 billion as of March 31, 2013, is the largest educator-only pension fund in the world. CalSTRS administers a hybrid retirement system, consisting of traditional defined benefit, cash balance and voluntary defined contribution plans. CalSTRS also provides disability and survivor benefits. For 100 years, CalSTRS has served California’s public school educators and their families, who today number 862,000 from the state’s 1,600 school districts, county offices of education and community college districts.