Lockheed Martin announced that its president and CEO-to-be, Christopher Kubasik, resigned after an ethics investigation found he had a "close personal relationship" with a subordinate employee and violated the company's code of ethics and business conduct. Lockheed Martin's board of directors elected Marillyn Hewson to fill his current position and take over as CEO on Jan. 1.
Kubasik on Friday left his role as vice chairman, president and chief operating officer. He was due to succeed Lockheed's outgoing chairman and CEO, Robert Stevens, on Jan. 1.
Stevens, who is retiring, said Friday he is "deeply disappointed and saddened by Chris's actions, which have been inconsistent with our values and standards" but insisted he is confident in Hewson's capabilities to succeed him. Stevens referred to Hewson in a statement as an "exceptional leader with impeccable credentials and deep knowledge of our business, customers, shareholders and employees."
Hewson, 58, joined Lockheed in 1983 and has served as executive vice president of the Electronic Systems business area for nearly three years; she will also keep that position until the end of this year. Lockheed's board of directors named her president and COO-elect last April.
In a conference call with reporters, Stevens praised the defense giant's robust transition plan and was encouraged by the "forward leaning" ethics program within the company, which asks employees to step forward if they "see anything unusual." He praised the action taken by the employee who initially reported Kubasik's relationship with a subordinate "without fear of reprisal."
The other person involved in the relationship no longer works at Lockheed.