Stan Kozlowski, board chairman of the Satellite Broadcasting and Communications Association (SBCA) resigned his association post after a majority of the board moved to formally endorse the pending merger of EchoStar and DirecTV.
Kozlowski, who is National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC) sales and marketing senior VP, had recognized a motion for the board to adjourn to seek legal counsel before breaking a long-standing SBCA precedent and endorse a private business matter. He had also recognized a motion to vote by secret ballot. He resigned after both motions failed.
"I felt I had no other option than to step down," Kozlowski said. "I believe that the SBCA is breaking its precedent of not taking positions on private business matters. SBCA is charged with representing all segments of the satellite industry, not just two of its largest members, and I don't feel it is fulfilling its charter by taking any position — pro or con — on any private business transaction."
The NRTC, which distributes DirecTV programming in rural markets, represents areas of the country that are most vulnerable to a monopolization of satellite-based TV programming distribution, since many rural consumers don't have access to cable or even over-the-air television signals.
First vice-chairman Eddy Hartenstein, who is also chairman and CEO of DirecTV, took Kozlowski's role on the board and led the panel in its vote to approve the merger endorsement. For additional information, see www.TWICE.com.