STORY: Shareholders at Tesla's annual general meeting on Thursday re-approved Musk's 2018 record-setting compensation that backers said is necessary to keep the billionaire focused on the car company.

"If that pay package had not been passed," said Gilbert, "he very well could have left the company. And that would have been disastrous for Tesla and disastrous for the stock."

Gilbert said she believes "the pushback that came from institutional investors is around just CEO pay packages in general. And I don't think you can say 'CEO packages in general.' I think each company needs to look at their own metrics and what they're trying to accomplish and what the CEO needs to make."