One more dead: KLA's founder-chairman is the latest backdating casualty

The founder and chairman of semiconductor equipment maker KLA-Tencor retired today over a stock option backdating scandal. Kenneth Levy (pictured) had been with the company for over 20 years. KLA will re-price backdated options that he and other KLA executives hold. The Wall Street Journal notes that a May article in that paper sparked the options probe.

That adds KLA to the list of companies kicking out officers over backdating, including Apple, CNet, and the latest company, chip maker Altera, whose CFO retired Monday. There are a few non-tech companies, but so far this is mostly a Silicon Valley problem.

The Journal lists (in a free article) companies that NASDAQ could de-list, including Apple (agreed to be only a minor threat due to its prestige and ability to recover).

KLA Chairman Steps Down [TheStreet.com]
List of company officials ensnared in stock options furor [AP]
Big Names on the 'D' List [WSJ, free]