Boeing's chief of communications resigned Thursday after complaining about an article he had written more than 30 years ago that claimed women should not serve in combat.
His resignation comes when a number of US companies investigate their corporate culture after weeks of protests in the country against racism and police brutality after African American George Floyd was killed by a white policeman.
Niel Golightly leaves Boeing after only a few months.
In a press release, he said the article "was a misguided contribution by a 29-year-old Cold War naval pilot to a debate that was live at the time".
"My reasoning was embarrassingly wrong and offensive," said Golightly, adding that the subsequent dialogue quickly opened my eyes, indelibly changed my mind, and shaped the principles of fairness, inclusion, respect, and diversity that have guided my professional life since then. ""
Its exit comes when Boeing is trying to get out of a crisis in which the 737 MAX has been grounded since March after two fatal crashes, and when the aviation industry is coping with the coronavirus pandemic that has resulted in travel restrictions and blocking measures.
David Calhoun, Boeing's chief executive, said he and Golightly had "discussed" the article extensively and discussed "its impact on his role as the company's chief spokesman."
"I want to emphasize our company's tireless commitment to diversity and inclusion in all its dimensions," said Calhoun.
At the beginning of June, the Boeing CEO informed employees that he wanted to intensify the dialogue on diversity.
(Except for the headline, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and published from a syndicated feed.)