Maybe "removing a moderator" was an over-reaction ("going nuclear").
A more gradual escalation might be e.g. kicking someone from a chatroom temporarily, for a cooling off period, maybe resuming the chat in private when you have the time and patience to explain things clearly.
I think this is what moderators do -- it's how they're expected (dare I say "required") to handle errant users. Perhaps it surprises a moderator to find that SE treats them (or "her") differently than how we ("moderators") are expected to treat others ("users").
I don't know who took that "important decision for our community". Monica's post suggests it might have been or involved you personally ...
Someone with a "director" job title had dropped into the room to announce ...
As an aside I expect that one of the functions of a director is to fire people -- I think of that job title as synonymous with "hatchet-person" (so if I'd seen "a director", that might have 'chilled' my speech)!
But anyway: "moderating"...
Normally the CoC says (note well):
Focus on the content, not the person
In this case apparently somebody escalated -- and made it a personal or personnel matter.
Incidentally the CoC is the moderators' "bible", if you'll excuse my jargon, I mention that in case you wonder how a moderator might take it literally or argue about its wording -- moderators have to know it, have to quote and explain it to users, and so on. So ... (!!)
Maybe a "culture" thing, communication styles?
Speaking of content, I read the original post (above) closely. Others answers argue that you ought to reverse your decision and that it's not a true apology unless you correct your alleged error.
Instead of repeating that, I was curious to discover exactly what you are or were apologising for -- it says it's "an Apology" there 'on the tin' (i.e. in the title) -- and as far as I can tell the one apologetic bit is, this sentence:
But we must also acknowledge the way in which we implemented it and our communications surrounding the decision could have been much better.
Every other sentence reads as an "apologia" (i.e. 'words afterwards, intended to justify or defend'), not as an "apology" ('expression of remorse, to avoid perpetuating an error').
Oh, and this paragraph:
We learned (or were painfully reminded, rather) to never ship at 6 PM (EDT) on a Friday. We didn’t follow that rule last week and as a result there was a lot of confusion over the weekend. Even more, this weekend was a religious holiday observed by many on the site. We’re sorry for the confusion and uneasiness that caused.
We’re doing a postmortem internally on how we can do better next time.
In the old days, did you know, if you made a mistake in what you shipped, you'd have to recall the product, correct the defect, and ship again. Costly! But no avoiding it, otherwise you'd lose your sales channel or user base.
Gong back to "explaining things clearly" in a private chat, I mean e.g.
- Explaining your motives and policies -- maybe with specific examples since generalities can be hard to grasp
- Communicating how you perceive the tone and direction of the conversation, and whether you tolerate continued talk-back -- maybe "I don't feel like you're hearing me, stop talking and read this very carefully: ... etc."
- What the choices are and the consequences of choice -- maybe "If you won't please kindly stop talking and comply now, we'll have to ask you to resign"
I guess that would be unambiguous.
You wrote, in the original post ...
being unwilling to accept our CM’s repeated requests
... maybe that's putting a polite gloss on it, a euphemism -- it doesn't sound like the moderator (i.e. Monica) understood that she was being told to e.g. 'understand, comply, and stop talking back'. Monica's post says that she wasn't aware that the time for feedback and dialog had ended.
So to me it sounds like it was (and still is) a miscommunication.
Not that I'm privy to the communications, this is how it seems to be based on the little public information that I've seen.
Anyway; good luck with your (plural) new direction!