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Arconic Lawyer Hired Last Year Quits as Company Fights Bias Suit

Nov. 23, 2021, 9:25 PM

Arconic Corp. is parting ways with its chief legal officer, Diana Toman, who became the target of bias allegations after she was hired by the lightweight metals manufacturer last year.

Toman notified the company Nov. 13 of her intention to resign for personal reasons, Pittsburgh-based Arconic, which traces its lineage to the breakup in 2016 of Alcoa Inc., disclosed in a securities filing.

Arconic and Toman, who is also the company’s corporate secretary, reached a separation agreement Nov. 17 that could see her receive more than $1.4 million in total compensation.

Her exit comes a little over a month after a judge ruled that Arconic must face a bias lawsuit filed by Daniel Burbach Jr., a former securities and corporate governance counsel at the company.

Burbach claimed in court papers that Toman forced him to work while he battled a case of Covid-19 during the early days of the pandemic. He alleges he was denied a disability accommodation and subsequently fired last year.

When asked if the Burbach allegations had anything to do with her departure, Tracie Gliozzi, an Arconic spokeswoman, reiterated that Toman resigned for personal reasons. Gliozzi said Arconic has yet to name a replacement.

Toman, a former general counsel at salt producer and mining company Compass Minerals International Inc., didn’t respond to a request for comment. She was hired last year by Arconic’s corporate predecessor, Arconic Rolled Products Corp.

Pittsburgh’s Rothman Gordon is advising Burbach in the lawsuit he’s filed in federal court against Arconic, which is being represented in the dispute by Babst, Calland, Clements and Zomnir. Burbach is now a corporate counsel at San Francisco-based biopharmaceutical company Nurix Therapeutics Inc.

Arconic has agreed to make a $506,000 lump sum payment to Toman representing her annual base salary, as well as a $525,000 one-time supplemental separation payment. Toman will also receive $379,500 in target incentive compensation for 2021 and two years of health and wellness benefits.

The deal, as detailed by Arconic in securities filings, will see Toman “provide transition and certain other advisory services” to the company through Dec. 31. She will continue to receive her annual base salary during that time.

Bloomberg data shows that Toman owns more than $2.6 million in Arconic stock. Her total compensation package during 2020 was almost $1.3 million, including roughly $510,500 in cash, according to Arconic’s most recent proxy statement.

Arconic was formed last year following a separation of the metal processing business that in 2016 split off from Alcoa to form Arconic Inc. The latter became Howmet Aerospace Inc., an engineered products and forgings company that in June hired a new legal chief of its own in Lola Lin, a former general counsel at Airgas Inc.

Lin succeeded Katherine Ramundo, who left Howmet earlier this year to become the top lawyer for automobile parts supplier Aptiv PLC. Ramundo previously served as Arconic Inc.’s legal chief prior to the separation that created Howmet.

The next law department leader at Arconic will inherit a litigation docket that includes an environmental remediation case in New Jersey, as well as lawsuits related to London’s Grenfell Tower fire in 2017. Arconic, which once made the aluminum cladding that caught fire in that disaster, successfully freed itself of some securities claims in that matter in June.

To contact the reporter on this story: Brian Baxter in New York at bbaxter@bloomberglaw.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Chris Opfer at copfer@bloomberglaw.com;
John Hughes in Washington at jhughes@bloombergindustry.com

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