At one time, the O'Sullivan family provided prosperity for the Lamar community and the entire area through their stewardship of O'Sullivan Industries. As of Sept. 29, one of the family's last remaining links to the legacy started by Tom O'Sullivan Sr., is no longer with the company.
Mr. O'Sullivan's oldest son, Dan, resigned from the company's board of directors following a special meeting Sept. 29.
In his resignation letter, O'Sullivan told million-dollar CEO Bob Parker that he did not agree with the direction in which Parker and his executive team, nearly all of whom worked with Parker at Newell Rubbermaid, are taking the company.
"I am writing to inform you of my decision to resign from the Board of Directors of O'Sullivan Industries Holdings, Inc. effective immediately at the close of today's special meeting," O'Sullivan wrote in his letter, which was addressed to Parker.
"I have been deeply ijnvolved in the operation and direction of O'Sullivan Industries for my entire adult life," O'Sullivan wrote. "I served as CEO and Chairman of the Board of O'Sullivan Industries Holdings until Oct. 16, 1998, and was an employee of O'Sullivan Industries from 1962 to 2000. However, due to recent changes in the methods used by management in directing the company's operations, I do not believe that I can remain on the board of directors. I do not question that management has the right to run the company as it sees fit, but I cannot remain a director because I do not subscribe to the methods management has recently used.
"Although I am resigning from the board, I remain a shareholder in the company, and will continue to follow the company's operation closely."
Though O'Sullivan did not spell out the methods with which he disagreed, it is no secret that in the past few months, Parker was eliminated many people who have worked for O'Sullivan Industries for more than three decades, people who helped lead the company to much of its success, including members of O'Sullivan's family.
The company also recently hired Parker, Rick Watkins, and Michael Orr from Newell Rubbermaid, with a deal already in place to move the corporate headquarters from Lamar to Atlanta, GA.