Businesswomen’s associations The Financial Women’s Association, The International Alliance, the Association of Professional Insurance Women (APIW), and the New York Women’s Agenda, all called upon their members to increase women’s representation on corporate boards. The associations urged their members, which number more than 100M in all, to actively encourage women to seek open board positions. The associations will also encourage their members to write letters to the CEOs of corporations in which they are shareholders and in which women are underrepresented in top positions. Sample letters provided to the members of each association explain why it is imperative for corporations to increase women’s representation on corporate boards.
The groups noted that more than half of all workers are women, that women make more consumers purchases than do men, and that women are gaining significant economic clout as stockholders.
Catalyst has reported that women held only 11% of the directorships in the 500 largest U.S. companies in 1998. Fourteen of those top-500 companies have no women directors.