This excerpt taken from the AKS DEF 14A filed Apr 17, 2008.
2007 Special Recognition Awards
On July 19, 2007, the Companys Board of Directors, upon the recommendation of the Committee, ratified the grant of special recognition awards to certain officers of the Company relating to the outstanding performance of the Company. Each award consisted of cash in an amount equal to one month of base salary for the recipient.
The awards were made pursuant to a special recognition program for all employees by which the Chief Executive Officer of the Company rewards extraordinary performance in the form of a cash award. Such awards typically are in the amount of one month of base salary. In accordance with the terms of the program, Mr. Wainscott decided to recognize various officers (excluding himself) for their contribution to the record-breaking financial performance of the Company. Because the intended recipients included the Executive Officers of the Company (excluding Mr. Wainscott himself), Mr. Wainscott requested and received the ratification of the Compensation Committee and the Board before making the awards to those individuals.
In making these special recognition awards, Mr. Wainscott stated that the purpose was to reward the members of senior management who most contributed to the success of the Companys financial turnaround since the Board acted in the fall of 2003 to replace both the Chief Executive Officer and the President of the Company. Mr. Wainscott observed at the time of the special recognition awards that, under the new management team, the Company had significantly increased its shipments and gross revenues, substantially reduced its controllable costs, significantly increased its cash position and overall liquidity, reduced its net debt by approximately 75%, and returned to sustainable profitability. Since the fall of 2003, the Company also has negotiated 12 new era labor agreements, including a new industry standard contract earlier this year at the Companys Middletown Works following a year-long lockout during which the Company continued to operate the plant so that it could honor its customer commitments.
Mr. Wainscott noted that the triggering event for the special recognition awards in July 2007, and the culmination of senior managements nearly four-year turnaround effort, was the record-breaking performance of the Company during the second quarter of 2007. For the second quarter of 2007, the Company reported quarterly records for its performance with respect to safety, quality, productivity, shipments, revenues, revenues per ton, operating profit and operating profit per ton. During the nearly four-year period leading up to those quarterly record results, the price of the Companys common stock has increased by more than 2000% from an intraday trading low of $1.74 per share on September 26, 2003 to a close on July 19, 2007 (the date of the Board ratification of the awards) of $38.94 per share.
The amounts of the Special Recognition Awards to the NEOs are included in the Summary Compensation Table beginning on page 40 of this Proxy Statement.