Women Gain in Boardrooms

According to a 1996 census of the nation’s largest 500 companies, women hold more than ten percent of the directors’ seats, the largest number to date. Conducted by a woman’s non-profit research group, Catalyst, the census also indicates that those numbers are leveling off. The numbers of women directors increased, but at a slower rate than in previous years. From 1994 to 1995, the number of directors jumped seven percent, from 1995 to 1996 it increased only at a rate of three percent. As of March 1996, women occupied 626 of the 6,123 Fortune 500 company board seats. Catalyst’s president Sheila Wellington commented, “Progress slowed in 1996. Nonetheless, if one realizes that only 69 percent of Fortune 500 companies had a woman director in 1993…and that now 83 percent have a woman, that demonstrates quite good progress.”


The New York Times - December 12, 1996

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