Former CEO leaving Lexmark's board

This year's annual meeting of Lexmark International will be the last for the man who helmed the company at its inception.

Former CEO Marvin Mann, who retired from the position in 1998, has decided to retire from his seat on the company's board of directors. It will be the first time since the printer maker's inception as a spinoff of IBM that Mann, previously an IBM executive, hasn't been involved in some form.

"You do something like this with mixed emotions," Mann, 76, said last week. "I will miss being involved and miss seeing the team and being in touch with the people.

"I was involved with the company from the first day, and that was almost 20 years ago, so it's time for me to move on."

Mann said he considered stepping down last year but was persuaded to stay longer.

Lexmark CEO and Chairman Paul Curlander said Mann will be missed.

"No one has contributed more to the building of Lexmark than Marvin Mann," he said.

Mann said that while he will no longer be actively involved, "I will view from afar with a great deal of interest."

"They're a great group of people," he said of his Lexmark colleagues. "They've done a terrific job in a very tough, competitive environment over a very long period of time."

Mann said he's retiring from the boards of the various businesses on which he serves but will continue to serve on several university boards.

He said he plans to spend more time with his children and grandchildren, as well as travelling more.

"There's no problem filling the time," he said. "The problem is finding enough time to do the things you want to do."

Asked about his favorite memories of Lexmark over the years, he responded, "It would take a book to write that."

"There are so many challenges we faced and managed our way through and so many great people who had great ideas and were willing to work hard to change and do things in different ways," he said.

Another director, James F. Hardymon, 75, is also retiring. Hardymon, who led Textron Inc. and served in numerous roles at Emerson Electric, had been a Lexmark director since 1998.

Curlander said Hardymon has served as presiding director "for three of the last four years during a very challenging time for Lexmark."

"On a personal level, I have greatly appreciated his experienced counsel," Curlander said.

With Hardymon's retirement, only Curlander, Kathi Seifert and Jean-Paul Montupet will be up for re-election.

The company's annual meeting, always a low-key affair, will be at 8 a.m. April 22 at the Embassy Suites on Newtown Pike. Proof of ownership of the company's stock is required for admission.

The meeting will mark the first use of the say-on-pay advisory vote that the company agreed to adopt last year. Stockholders had approved the proposal brought by sponsor Amalgamated Bank in 2008 and 2009 before the company's board agreed to implement it after last year's vote. The vote is non-binding and merely reflects the stockholders' view of whether they approve of the company's executive compensation policies.

The company's proxy statement, issued in advance of the annual meeting, showed that the company's top leaders saw significant pay increases in 2009, except for Curlander.

Curlander's total pay fell below the other three top officers because he requested, in an effort to control costs, that he not be given a long-term incentive award in 2009.