LOS ANGELES AND REDWOOD CITY, CA (April 19, 2017) — The Semler Brossy Consulting Group and Equilar, the leading provider of board intelligence solutions, are partnering on a thought leadership series in 2017 to bring more awareness to the critical issues of corporate board composition and diversity.
“We’re proud to partner with Semler Brossy on research, analysis and insights with respect the changing boardroom landscape, particularly with respect to composition and diversity,” said Belen Gomez, Senior Director of Research and Board Services at Equilar. “We share a common interest in bringing awareness to these issues across our wide range of corporate clients.”
“We look forward to our partnership with Equilar to further the dialogue around this important topic,” said Blair Jones, Managing Partner at Semler Brossy. “Together, we will explore where board diversity efforts are working well, where they can be improved, and the impact they are having.”
Diversity has become a hot-button issue among both activist and institutional investors, and many believe boards should be doing more not only to consider diverse directors when addressing board composition, but also to be more transparent around their efforts. An Equilar report from 2016, which featured commentary from Semler Brossy, found that just 12.8% of the S&P 500 disclose information about race or ethnicity in their board composition. Since there is not a requirement for board diversity disclosures, this information remains difficult to find and benchmark.
Without accurate benchmarks, many boards lean on an excuse that there are not enough qualified diverse candidates that they can include in a director search. However, in terms of gender diversity—which is generally available in public filings—a joint study between Equilar and the U.S. 30% Club found that about four in five currently serving female executives at public companies have never served on a board.
According to the Equilar Gender Diversity Index (GDI), a quarterly benchmark of women on boards, the percentage of females on Russell 3000 boards reached 15.1% in 2016, up from 13.9% a year earlier. While there has been progress on an annual basis, it would take until 2055 for boards to reach gender parity at the current rate of growth, the most recent report found.
To help support the efforts of those boards seeking diverse candidates for board succession, the Equilar Diversity Network (EDN) launched in 2016 within Equilar BoardEdge as the “registry of registries” for diverse director lists. Currently, EDN has more than a dozen partners featuring thousands of director candidates with diverse backgrounds, searchable within the BoardEdge database alongside more than 150,000 executives and board members.
The Equilar and Semler Brossy partnership will include a quarterly webinar series as part of the Equilar Executive Network Series, in addition to articles in the Equilar Board Intelligence newsletter and “The Changing Face of America’s Boardrooms,” a recurring feature in C-Suite magazine, which highlights the contributions of new directors who have joined their first boards. These items are designed to help board members understand and strategize director recruitment and succession planning.
Semler Brossy joins the KPMG Board Leadership Center on as a partner on the Equilar Diversity Network (EDN) Advisory Council.
About Semler Brossy
Semler Brossy is an established, independent executive compensation consulting firm founded in 2001. Over the years, our clients have trusted us with their toughest business issues, helping them work through changes in strategic direction, turnaround situations, CEO succession, transactions such as mergers, acquisitions and IPOs, and conflicts between management and the board. We have built and maintained longstanding corporate and board consulting relationships because we always view issues from a multi-faceted business perspective.
Equilar is the leading provider of board intelligence solutions. Companies of all sizes rely on Equilar for their most important boardroom decisions, including 70% of the Fortune 500 and institutional investors representing over trillion in assets. Equilar offers data-driven solutions for board recruiting, executive compensation and shareholder engagement that bring together business leaders, institutional investors and advisors to drive exceptional results while ensuring sound corporate governance. The Equilar suite of solutions includes industry-leading board education symposiums, comprehensive custom research services and award-winning thought leadership. Founded in 2000, Equilar is cited regularly by Associated Press, Bloomberg, CNBC, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and other leading media outlets.
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