DOVER, Del. — The chairman and CEO of a California solar energy company that sought bankruptcy protection after receiving a $528 million loan guarantee from the Obama administration has resigned.
Solyndra Inc. said in papers filed in Delaware bankruptcy court Wednesday that Brian Harrison resigned last Friday.
Attorneys for Fremont, Calif.-based Solyndra said Harrison's resignation was contemplated even before the bankruptcy filing and was "consistent with the company's budget and status of its wind-down effort."
Solyndra said Harrison's position was superseded by the appointment of a chief restructuring officer.
Solyndra's choice for CRO, which is subject to court approval, is R. Todd Neilson, a director of Los-Angeles-based Berkeley Research Group LLC.
According to court papers, Neilson's previous bankruptcy clients include rap mogul Marion "Suge" Knight's Death Row Records and boxer Mike Tyson.
Solyndra's court filing came in response to a motion by the Justice Department to appoint a trustee to oversee the bankruptcy case.
The U.S. bankruptcy trustee requested the appointment of a Chapter 11 trustee after Harrison and Solyndra chief financial officer W.G. Stover, citing an ongoing FBI investigation, refused to testify before a House subcommittee investigating the loan guarantee Solyndra received in 2009 from the Department of Energy.
Harrison joined Solyndra in July 2010, just over a year before the bankruptcy filing. Prior to Solyndra, he was president and CEO of flash memory chip maker Numonyx BV, a company created by Intel, STMicroelectronics and investment company Francisco Partners.
Solyndra was the first renewable-energy company to receive a loan guarantee under a stimulus-law program to encourage green energy and was frequently touted by the Obama administration as a model. President Barack Obama visited the company's Silicon Valley headquarters last year, and Vice President Joe Biden appeared by satellite at its groundbreaking.