Jake DeSantis, an executive vice president at insurance giant AIG, also used The New York Times to resign in 2009 in a letter promising to give his $742,000 bonus to charity. The company, which had received a $182.5 billion government bailout, had been criticized for awarding $165 million in bonuses to employees.
"Our earnings have caused such a distraction for so many from the more pressing issues our country faces, and I would like to see my share of it benefit those truly in need," DeSantis said.
SHORT AND TWEET
Social media offer new opportunities for pithy farewells to zing around the world in an instant. Sun Microsystems chief executive Jonathan Schwartz managed a classic of the genre when he quit his job in a philosophical tweeted haiku in 2010: "Financial crisis/Stalled too many customers/CEO no more."
GOODBYE AND GOOD LUCK
With resignation letters, timing can be everything. In April, a German civil servant on the verge of retirement sent a goodbye message to colleagues claiming he had not done any work for 14 years. The surveying official in the town of Menden said that thanks to overlap and double-staffing, "since 1998, I was present but not really there. So I'm going to be well prepared for retirement — Adieu."
After the email was leaked to a local newspaper, the town's mayor pointed out that the man had never complained of being underworked during 38 years of employment.
Norwegian radio newsreader Pia Beathe Pedersen quit on air in 2010, accusing her employers of putting too much pressure on staff and saying she wanted to "be able to breathe" again.
She walked out after refusing to read the day's news bulletin because "nothing important has happened" anyway.
Associated Press writers Cassandra Vinograd in London and Louise Nordstrom in Stockholm contributed to this report. Jill Lawless can be reached at http://Twitter.com/JillLawless