Wal-Mart shares rose 3% after it revealed plans to scale back supercenter expansion. And Edwards told CNBC's Dylan Ratigan that the world's biggest retailer has been infused with a much-needed "breath of fresh air."
She cited the inclusion of Alan Questrom, former CEO of J.C. Penney, who joined the board Friday, and the successes of Eduardo Castro-Wright as CEO of Wal-Mart Stores USA. The latter had shaped Wal-Mart's Mexican subsidiary, Wal-Mex, into that country's top retailer; luring him to his present position "is a brilliant stroke."
But Edwards also said that, in the wake of high-profile problems, the world's biggest retailer needs to change company "ethics from the top." She believes that the firm's public relations efforts are "more a facade than the true soul of the corporation," and called for a "little more airing out in Bentonville before stock prices move again."
Pressed by Ratigan on whether that "airing out" might include CEO Scott, she replied, "It might."