REDWOOD CITY, CA (March 8, 2021) — Equilar, the leading provider of corporate leadership data, today announced several new Equilar Diversity Network partnerships in an ongoing effort to build the largest database of highly-qualified women and minority candidates for corporate board service.
“In recognition of International Women’s Day, Equilar is proud to announce partnerships with The Forum of Executive Women, OnBoardNC, UNC School of Law Director Diversity Initiative, WomenExecs on Boards, and The Boston Club. These leading organizations are focused on supporting board-ready women and underrepresented minorities for board opportunities,” said Belen Gomez, Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Equilar. “Their registries of highly-talented executive leaders will join Equilar’s BoardEdge database to be included in searches by hundreds of leading public companies, search firms and other governance stakeholders searching for diverse candidates.”
“The Forum of Executive Women is proud to be the first organization in Philadelphia to join the Equilar Diversity Network. This partnership provides a tremendous benefit to our members who are seeking board seats and aligns with our mission to advance women in leadership roles,” said Forum President Lisa Detwiler.
"As we are learning, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion are key tenants for acquiring and retaining top talent, building inclusive work environments, and improving corporate performance," said Suzanne Miglucci, Chair of OnBoardNC. "Until now, the challenge has been finding qualified, diverse candidates to lead from the boardroom. OnBoardNC is thrilled to join Equilar's Diversity Network consortium to close this gap with board-ready talent and help advance diverse representation."
“The Director Diversity Initiative at the University of North Carolina School of Law is excited to partner with Equilar and expand the reach of the incredibly diverse talent we have in our database of potential directors,” said Lissa Broome, the head of DDI. “So often we hear that organizations are committed to diverse talent, but don’t know where to find it. We are so happy to join Equilar in helping to be part of the solution to that problem.”
About the Equilar Diversity Network
Launched in September 2016 to advance diverse representation in boardrooms across the globe, EDN now consists of more than 40 partner organizations and nearly 170,000 diverse board candidates, supplementing nearly one million candidate profiles already in the Equilar BoardEdge database. EDN is a consortium of leading diversity-focused organizations consolidating robust registries of board-ready executives into one searchable database. Since the Network was founded, more than 2,000 members across EDN partner organizations have been appointed to corporate boards.
About the Equilar Gender Diversity Index
According to the latest Equilar Gender Diversity Index (GDI), women now hold 23.5% of all Russell 3000 directorships. This acceleration moved the needle, pushing the GDI to 0.47, where 1.0 represents parity among men and women on corporate boards.
The movement around board diversity has gained tremendous momentum over the last few years, particularly as companies across Corporate America have faced pressure from investors and legislators to make a conscious effort towards more diverse boardrooms. This trend is expected to further expand in the coming years.
However, the rate of growth of women on Russell 3000 board took a small step back in Q4 2020. At the current rate, the Russell 3000 would achieve gender parity by 2032. Just a year ago, the anticipated date was 2030.
“A slowdown in the growth rate could be attributable to any number of reasons, and importantly the GDI year-over-year comparison serves as a valuable reminder that progress requires intentionality, commitment and ongoing persistence,” said Susan Angele, Senior Advisor, Board Governance at The KPMG Board Leadership Center.
Despite the slight slowdown in growth, the conversation around diversity and inclusion persists. Additionally, key stakeholders are calling for more transparency around diversity. “While the number of women on boards has improved in the U.S. over the past few years, attributed to a shift in investor, stakeholder and public interest, more investors are now calling for companies to disclose their board and workforce diversity profiles,” said Brigid Rosati, Director of Business Development at Georgeson.
Given these new developments, the presence of more women in the boardroom is likely to increase in the coming years as the Russell 3000 inches closer to gender parity.
Other key findings from the report include:
44.2% of new directors were women in Q4 2020
71 Russell companies 3000 have at least 50% women on their boards
Less than 6% of companies do not have a women director
Please click here for more details and commentary on the latest Gender Diversity Index.
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