After a day at the Massachusetts Conference for Women, it feels appropriate to look at the state of women’s leadership in the Commonwealth. Last week The Boston Club, an organization dedicated to appointing women to corporate boards of directors, released its annual census of Women Directors and Executive Officers of Massachusetts Public Companies. While the report shows some gains for women, a closer look at the data reveals progress is slow.
- A record number of women (108) hold board seats at the 100 largest companies in Massachusetts. This is a 1.6 percent increase over 2011. In 2003, when the census was started, women held just 74 board seats.
- The number of companies with no women directors decreased from 50 to 35.
- Sixty-five of the 100 companies now have one or more women directors – a record for Massachusetts.
- The number of companies with at least one woman director is at a record high too (65).
- Six companies that previously had all-male boards in the 2011 census have elected a woman director in the past year.
- Thirty of the top 100 public companies in Massachusetts have at least one woman among the most highly compensated executives.
- The number of women executive officers in the top 100 public companies increased as well – to 73 total. Two companies added two women to the executive suites. Another company named its first female executive officer ever.
The Work Ahead:
- While the number of women executives increased from 2011, there were more women at the top in 2005, 2006 and 2007.
- Thirty-five of the 100 largest public companies in Massachusetts have all-male boards.
- And almost half (49) of the census companies have no women in their executive suites.
- Twenty-six companies have no women directors or executives. in either their boardrooms or their executive suites.
- Less than 2 percent of the 850 director seats in the Census companies are held by women of color.