Where's Walmart? Ask corporate headquarters and you'll hear about the shareholders meeting in Fayetteville, Arkansas. Ask anyone else and they'll point you to Washington, D.C. June means decision time on the Supreme Court ruling for Betty Dukes v. Walmart. Dukes — one of the superstore's 850,000-plus female employees — sued the company in 2001 over unfair pay and promotion practices for women, and the court is now deciding whether to uphold the case's class-action status. Win or lose, there's no real victory for Walmart — even if it escapes billions in damages, it may take more to clear its reputation.
A version of this article appeared in the June 2011 issue of Fast Company magazine.