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JP SHAREHOLDER SEEKS INDEPENDENT DIRECTORS, REGRETS WITHDRAWAL OF JP GENERAL COUNSEL

 CHARLOTTE, N.C., Nov. 25 ~PRNewswire~ -- A major shareholder of Jefferson-Pilot Corporation (NYSE: JP) who last year waged a proxy contest against the Greensboro, N.C.-based insurer, today requested that the company allow shareholders to vote on a proposal that would mandate that most of JP's board be composed of independent directors.
 The proposal from Louise Parsons was submitted by letter today for inclusion in JP's 1993 proxy statement. It would require, if shareholders approve, that 75 percent of the board and 100 percent of the audit, compensation and nominating and conflict of interest committees be composed of independent directors. It defines an independent director as "someone whose only significant connection to the corporation is the directorship. Such a person is above the internal politics, social and economic pressures that exist within any corporation."
 Parson's proposal immediately follows the Tuesday announcement by Charlotte attorney Robin Hinson that, contrary to a decision made public four weeks ago, he will not serve as JP's general counsel, head of its 10-member legal staff and senior vice president. His latest announcement stated only that he had not been able to resolve some key details of his arrangement with JP.
 "We view Robin Hinson's withdrawal as a major setback to what we thought was progress at JP," said Parsons, chair of the JP Shareholders Committee and owner of 450,000 shares of JP stock worth about $18 million. "We had seen his appointment as the third positive move following the election of C.D. Spangler (head of the University of North Carolina system) as the non-executive vice chairman of JP's board and naming David Stonecipher (formerly president of the GeorgiaUS insurance companies) as CEO-elect of JP."
 "I know Robin Hinson well," said Craig Redwine, JPSC vice chair. "He is a brilliant and independent thinker with a leading law firm that bears his name. His unexpected departure is a shock and seems to signal that something is drastically wrong at JP. We are deeply disappointed by his latest announcement."
 "We fear that disappointments will continue until we have an independent board which serves as the representative of shareholders and challenges management to perform at peak capacity," Parsons said.
 Parsons added that she believes JP will earn only about 11 percent on its shareholder capital this year. "Based on the performance of comparable insurance companies, JP shareholders have a right to expect JP to earn at least a 15 percent return. We need to bring in a fresh group of objective, experienced independent directors. Management should not be in the boardroom unless the directors invite them."
 -0- 11~25~92
 ~CONTACT: Buck Lawrimore of Lawrimore Communications, 704-525-4775, or David Sternstein of H.J. Rubenstein & Associates, 212-489-6900, both for the JP Shareholders Committee~
 (JP)


CO: JP Shareholders Committee; Jefferson-Pilot Corporation ST: North Carolina IN: TLS INS SU:

SB-MM -- CH004 -- 1517 11~25~92 12:44 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 25, 1992
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