"It Was Kind Of Harsh"
Life goes on at Boeing, as it has in the wake of scandal after
costly scandal, after President and CEO Harry Stonecipher was
ousted last weekend because of his admitted affair with 48-year old
Debra Peabody, a company vice president based in the nation's
Asked by the Seattle Post-Intelligencer about their reaction to
the forced resignation, a lot of employees seemed to take it all in
stride. Some, like John Marberg, who works in the Boeing plant at
Everett, WA, were somewhat taken aback by the sudden announcement
one week ago.
"It was kind of harsh," he told the Post-Intelligencer. "It's
not good, but it's not a big blow, either," he said, noting that
Stonecipher planned to retire anyway in a year-and-a-half, when he
Blame the times, Marberg told the Seattle paper. "It's how he
went about it that got him fired," said Marberg. "We have to focus
on getting clean so we can get those contracts. It just shows how
stringent we are being on ourselves."
I never liked him," said another
worker quoted by the Seattle paper.
"What we really want to know is who he was messing around with,
and why wasn't she fired?" asked yet another. That question was
answered last week by both the Wall Street Journal and BusinessWeek
Online. Stonecipher's paramour has been identified as 48-year old
Debra Peabody, a Boeing vice president in charge of the company's
office in Washington, DC, where she worked under the supervision of
the company's chief lobbyist.
"I think it'll be better," that worker told the P-I. "All you
hear is rumblings about Stonecipher. Nobody liked him."
Still, there seemed to be an undercurrent of optimism at
Boeing's Puget Sound facilities last week. "I'm surprised it all
happened so quickly, but you have to be spotless. You have to lead
by example. Otherwise, he's not much of a leader," said another
employee who declined to be identified. "Let's hope the new man
does things in a more traditional way," he added. "I think we'll be
OK in the long run."