DETROIT — The UAW's retiree health care trust no longer has representation on General Motors' board of directors.
The UAW Retiree Medical Benefits Trust forfeited its right to designate a nominee to the GM board when it sold 40 million shares in the company in February.
To keep the seat, the trust -- GM's largest shareholder -- had to retain at least 50 percent of the shares it initially acquired as part of the automaker's emergence from bankruptcy in 2009. The deal was part of an October 2009 stockholder agreement among the UAW trust, GM and the U.S. Treasury.
At the time of the share sale in February, it was unclear if the initial shares outlined in the agreement included a three-way stock split before the automaker's November 2010 initial public offering that increased the trust's holdings to 262.5 million shares from 87.5 million.
The trust -- which is a voluntary employees' beneficiary association, or VEBA -- and company confirmed the loss of the board seat Friday, citing the sale in February that reduced the trust's shares to 100.15 million -- below the 50 percent threshold.
"The VEBA's right to nominate a director for election to the Board was predicated on the VEBA owning a certain percentage of the shares that they initially acquired in 2009," GM said in a statement. "After their February sale of GM shares, they no longer meet this requirement."
The trust's seat had remained empty since December 2017, when retired UAW Vice President Joe Ashton resigned amid a widening federal probe into joint training centers overseen by representatives of the union and Detroit automakers.
Ashton, who was appointed to the GM board in August 2014, was the first UAW representative to join GM's board in its more than 100-year history.
On Wednesday, GM named Jami Miscik, CEO of geopolitical consulting firm Kissinger Associates in New York, to its board. She brought the number of board members back to the total when Ashton was on the board.