“We interrupt our steady stream of guest posts to post this important message. We will continue tomorrow with the many guest posts we have lined up. If you sent a post in please be patient.”
For seven months we, all of us, have been gathering momentum and intensity like a tropical storm heading up the coast. With every voice heard we churn bigger, stronger and we have long since passed being upgraded to a hurricane. We are a force to be reckoned with…just think about it: in July we reacted to scary news and rallied together in one amazing day. Since then we have not waned in any way shape or form, in fact we have built upon the momentum of each day and each week, feeding off the encouragement of both each other and our customers, who in turn joined us.
Along the way we have sent overtures to the three “independent” board members, Cowan, Weiner and Gebaide, in the hopes that maybe they would come out of the shadows and get to know us a bit. We invited them to our stores and our grand openings. We sent emails and letters, often times pleading for them to understand our culture. All of this we did because we held a belief that maybe, just maybe, they would see the light. Maybe, just maybe, we would be able to win them over to the Market Basket Way.
Boy, were we naive.
It’s time for us to stop asking and inviting and hoping with these guys. Let’s look at their track records and see why they don’t deserve our invitations to engage:
Ron Weiner: Rode in to Andover meeting with Babson fellow alum ASD; has repeatedly written in condescending ways to multiple associates; brushed us off at the Pru; has requested, and received, compensation for sitting on profit sharing plan committee (a previously unpaid assignment)
Keith Cowan: The interim Chairman of the Board is currently facing a suit alleging that he is in no way independent and that he is, in fact, fully in bed with ASD; is a former A director who had a $3m per year job with Sprint that he supposedly left so that he could serve on our board…where he makes approximately $175k per year…something doesn’t smell right there; his courtroom antics of last month have painted a pretty clear picture of his being quite the puppet of ASD’s.
Eric Gebaide: The new guy has flown pretty much under the radar but we have heard one thing about him that gives us a peak at his nature and why we don’t want him around. One of our supporters, who for a while was fairly vocal on our social sites, was silenced after Mr. Gebaide contacted the legal department of the supporter’s company and demanded they have that person cease and desist from participating in our battle. To be clear, Eric searched this person out online and found out all that he could about them, then contacted the legal team at their company and threatened that person’s job…all for supporting We Are Market Basket. Needless to say, this intimidation tactic only served to deepen that person’s resolve to fight alongside us.
We now realize that these three so called “independent” Board members have no interest in doing what is right for OUR company and OUR customers, their only interest is in pleasing and voting the wishes of ASD. For the past seven months we have tried to take the high road only to be rebuffed, ignored and watch as they systematically destroy OUR company. They have not, in all of this time, voted anything except what ASD wanted and have not done a single positive thing as far as OUR Company is concerned.
If they had taken the time to get to know us, they would know that we are so much more than employees, we are associates and we all have a huge stake in this Company. Our commitment to ATD and other top executives is unwavering but OUR commitment to OUR Company and OUR culture is even stronger. From this minute on, let’s make it abundantly clear to these gentlemen that they are not welcome in our stores. They’re not wanted at our store openings. Let’s not engage them in any way other than with a firm resolution that they are not welcome here. We cannot and will not work for someone that has not walked in our shoes, it’s the way we were brought up. If you dare to replace ATD or any other top executives watch what happens, it is going to get ugly.
Their window of opportunity has closed.
We Are Market Basket and WE ARE DONE!