Robert resigns position on hospitals boardElisabeth Robert, president and CEO of Vermont Teddy Bear, resigned her seat of the Fletcher Allen Health Care’s Board of Trustees today (February 9, 2005). Robert issued the following statement: “After discussing the matter with other board members at our meeting yesterday, I have decided to resign form the Fletcher Allen Board of Trustees, effective immediately, because I believe this will be in the best interest of the organization. I believed it was necessary to have a discussion with the entire board before reaching this decision and yesterdays meeting was our first opportunity.It has been an honor to service Fletcher Allen as a volunteer during a period of tremendous challenges. I am proud of my work as chair of the board Audit Committee and as a member fo the Finance Committee and Compensation Committee, and I am especially proud of the enormous progress Fletcher Allen has made since ai joined the board in the midst of a crisis two years ago. I brought enormous energy to this board and a persistent commitment to see it succeed. There is much work remaining to be done, but I recognize that the recent controversy surrounding one of my companys teddy bears will detract from my ability to serve effectively and I cannot allow this to occur. I leave Fletcher Allen with great respect for my follow board members, its skilled leaders and dedicated employees, and will continue to support the organization in any way I can, said Robert.The teddy bear in question was the Crazy For You Valentines bear that featured a teddy bear in a straightjacket; it also came with commitment papers. The bear was very popular and eventually sold out. However, it drew opposition from mental health advocates. Fletcher Allen already had drawn criticism from such groups because of its plan, now changed, that would have moved psychiatric services out of the main hospital in Burlington.She was appointed by the Vermont Health Foundation to the FAHC board in December 2002.At the board meeting on Tuesday, February 8, a professor of psychiatry from the University of Vermont said Robert should resign her position.