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Urban Outfitters Deflects Shareholder Pitch For Women, Minorities On Corporate Board

(A building on the Urban Outfitters campus, on the grounds of the former Philadelphia Navy Yard, in South Philadelphia.  Photo provided)

(A building on the Urban Outfitters campus, on the grounds of the former Philadelphia Navy Yard, in South Philadelphia. Photo provided)

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - A measure calling on retailer Urban Outfitters to consider including women and minorities on the company’s corporate board was defeated today by shareholders during the annual meeting of the South Philadelphia-based company.

Company officials announced that the proposal put before shareholders was defeated by a majority of the shares of stock voted, but it wouldn’t disclose the vote totals — deferring that announcement, under securities laws, for a few days.

Aditi Mohapatra is a senior analyst with Calvert Investments, one of two parties behind the proposal.

“Even if we were to earn 51 percent of votes, they would not actually have to implement what we were asking,” she said.  “Rather, it should be an indication to companies that there is a certain percentage of support for a policy change on the part of the company.”

The State of Connecticut’s treasurer, an African-American female, also was supporting the diversity move.

Mohapatra says she is hopeful that Urban Outfitters’ leadership, which caters to women with its clothing products and employs thousands of women in its operations, would act on its own at some point to make its corporate board more inclusive.

Urban Outfitters issued no comment after the meeting.

Reported by Mark Abrams, KYW Newsradio 1060

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