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Avon elects McKinsey partner Killefer as director

NEW YORK (AP) -- Avon Products Inc. on Monday said Nancy Killefer, a senior partner at McKinsey Co., was elected to its board, effective Sept. 1.

Killefer, age 59, will be retiring from McKinsey later this month after 32 years with the management consulting firm, where she has focused on strategy, marketing, and organizational effectiveness and efficiency issues.

Avon said her emphasis had been on consumer-based and retail industries, prior to working in the public sector and her subsequent founding of McKinsey's public sector practice.

Killefer served as assistant secretary for management, chief financial officer and chief operating officer at the U.S. Department of Treasury from 1997 to 2000, and as a member of the IRS Oversight Board from 2000 to 2005.

Also effective Sept. 1, Kimberly Ross will step down from the board. Avon said in May that Ross, the company's chief financial officer, would serve as a director on an interim basis while the board conducted the search for a new independent director. The move was made in order to maintain the minimum number of directors required by Avon.

Earlier this month, Avon posted a 48 percent drop in second-quarter net income, dragged down by currency exchange rates and the sale of its Silpada jewelry business at a loss. The results topped Wall Street expectations, but sales slid 2 percent, including a 12 percent drop in North America. The company is still grappling with bribery allegations stemming from a probe that started in China in 2008 and since spread to other countries. An offer to settle allegations with U.S. authorities for $12 million was rejected.