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Navigant Investor Fights Executive Pay Increase in Lawsuit

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Jan. 18 (Bloomberg) -- A Navigant Consulting Inc. shareholder sued the firm’s top officers on the corporation’s behalf, arguing that they received an “irrational” pay increase last year in light of a falling stock price.

“For the past several years, the board has awarded excessive executive compensation despite the fact that Navigant shareholders have seen the value of their investment plummet,” the investor, Natalie Gordon, said in a complaint filed today in federal court in Chicago.

Exercising their right to “say on pay” under the 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, a majority of company shareholders last year opposed an executive pay raise later approved by Navigant’s board, she said.

She accused William M. Goodyear, the company’s chairman and chief executive officer, as well as Chief Operating Officer Julie M. Howard, Chief Financial Officer Thomas A. Nardi, General Counsel Monica Weed and seven board members of breaching their fiduciary duties to the Chicago-based company.

Gordon is seeking an award of unspecified money damages on behalf of Navigant together with a court order compelling the company to reform and improve its corporate governance.

Carrie Grapenthin, a spokeswoman for the company, didn’t immediately reply to voice-mail and e-mail messages seeking comment.

The case is Gordon v. Goodyear, 12-cv-00369, U.S. District Court, Northern District of Illinois (Chicago).

To contact the reporter on this story: Andrew Harris in Chicago at aharris16@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Michael Hytha at mhytha@bloomberg.net

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