A Yahoo director who didn't challenge an inaccuracy in CEO Scott Thompson's academic record will step down from the troubled Internet company's board, according to a report published Tuesday.
Patti Hart, the head of the Yahoo search committee that hired Thompson in January, reportedly won't seek re-election at the company's annual meeting later this year.
That's what unnamed people close to the situation told All Things D, a technology blog affiliated with The Wall Street Journal.
Yahoo, which is based in Sunnyvale, California, had no immediate comment.
Hart's resignation would make her the first casualty of a dust-up caused by the recent exposure of a bogus college degree that has periodically appeared in Thompson's official biography.
The bio included a computer science degree that Thompson never received from Stonehill College, a Catholic school near Boston. Thompson was graduated from Stonehill in 1979 with a bachelor's in accounting, an accomplishment correctly listed in his bio.
The fabricated degree periodically appeared in various summaries about Thompson before Yahoo lured him away from his previous job running eBay's online payment service, PayPal.
Those earlier falsehoods have raised questions about whether Thompson deliberately allowed the deception to perpetuate and why Hart didn't insist on a more thorough background check before Yahoo hired him.
After Thompson joined Yahoo, the bogus degree appeared on his bio on Yahoo's website and in documents filed April 27 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
An activist hedge fund that owns a 5.8 per cent stake in Yahoo already had been demanding that the company jettison Thompson and Hart.
The report about Hart's impending departure comes the day after the hedge fund, Third Point LLC, filed a request to review all the internal Yahoo records that led to Thompson's hiring.
In a Monday memo to Yahoo's employees, Thompson apologised for the distractions caused by furore over his inaccurate bio without offering an explanation on who was responsible for the deception.
He also promised to cooperate with an investigation by Yahoo's board into the circumstances surrounding the illusory degree.
Hart, 56, joined Yahoo's board nearly two years ago. She is also CEO of gambling machine maker International Game Technology. Before joining Yahoo's board, Hart was a director for Korn/Ferry International, which specialises in executive search.