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Walmart keeps leadership in the family

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FAYETTEVILLE, ARK. » Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is passing the chairmanship of the world’s largest retailer from the eldest son of late founder Sam Walton to a third generation.

The company said board Chairman Rob Walton will step down and be succeeded by Vice Chairman Greg Penner, who is his son-in-law.

The change took effect at the end of the company’s annual shareholders’ meeting Friday and came despite pressures from labor-backed worker groups to name an independent chairman. The calls for independent leadership mounted in the wake of allegations of bribery in Mexico and other countries Walmart operates in that came to surface in spring 2012.

Safety agency admits flaws in GM case

DETROIT » The U.S. government’s auto safety agency acknowledged Friday that staffers’ failure to understand technology and lack of skepticism prevented them from rooting out a deadly problem with General Motors ignition switches for more than a decade.

The mea culpa came Friday as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration outlined actions designed to make itself more aggressive in finding and solving safety problems among the 240 million cars on U.S. roadways. It’s the first time the agency has admitted fault in failing to discover the switch problem and link it to a series of fatal accidents, although regulators still blame the automaker for hiding the defect.


Hawaiian Host has promoted Wilma Asato to accounting and inventory specialist. Prior to her promotion, Asato was an accounting clerk.

Castle High School has announced the appointment of Bernadette Tyrell as the new principal, effective July 1. Prior to filling her current position as principal of Sunset Beach Elementary four years ago, she served as vice principal at Kahuku High and Intermediate for seven years as well as vice principal and teacher for King Intermediate in Kane­ohe.

Hawaii Gas has welcomed the following individuals to its board of directors: 

» Colleen Hanabusa is the former Hawaii congresswoman.

» Colbert Matsumoto is chairman and president of Island Holdings.

» Catherine Ngo is Central Pacific Bank’s incoming CEO.

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