- Associated Press - Wednesday, September 9, 2015

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - The founder of Starkey Hearing Technologies declined to comment Wednesday on reports of a senior leadership shake-up, citing an ongoing investigation at the hearing aid giant.

Minnesota Public Radio News (https://bit.ly/1Mc9dj2 ) reported company President Jerry Ruzicka and three senior executives were fired, citing an internal email it obtained. Ruzicka, Chief Financial Officer Scott Nelson, Senior Vice President of Operations Keith Guggenberger and Senior Vice President of Human Resources Larry Miller were fired effective immediately, according to the email.

All four executives’ names were absent from the company’s website Wednesday afternoon.

Ruzicka referred a request for comment to his attorney, Marshall Tanick.

“We’re looking into the matter and hope it can be resolved fairly and amicably,” Tanick said, adding that he was aware of a document the company sent out saying that Ruzicka and three others were let go. He declined further comment.

In a statement released to The Associated Press through a spokeswoman, company founder and chief executive William Austin wouldn’t confirm the firings and said he couldn’t comment due to an investigation.

“There are no issues that affect our company and it’s business as usual,” Austin said.

It’s unclear what the investigation entails. FBI spokesman Kyle Loven said the agency is not involved. Police in Eden Prairie, where the company is headquartered, have played no part so far, spokeswoman Joyce Lorenz said.

Starkey is a private company that employs more than 3,600 people worldwide and churns out the most hearing aids in the U.S., but the company is perhaps best known for its foundation that hosts star-studded galas to raise money for charity. The company has brought big names to headline its annual event in St. Paul like former presidents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, Katy Perry and Elton John.


Information from: Minnesota Public Radio News, https://www.mprnews.org

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