Gender Equity: Increase Representation of Women on Corporate Boards


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When SB826 became law, 1,275 women needed to be added to public company boards in California

Now, more than 97% of California companies have at least ONE woman director.


467 companies (71.8%) need one or more women to join their boards by the end of 2021 to meet the gender requirement of SB826.

In Q3 2018, California ranked 29th among all U.S. states in terms of the percentage of female board members (17.4%). California jumped to the 16th position in Q4 2019, with 23.3% of directorships held by women.

S&P / RUSSELL 3000

22% WOB Q1 2020

The percentage of women on Russell 3000 boards was 22 percent at the end of the first quarter of 2020, according to Equilar’s Q1 2020 Gender Diversity Index.

At the current rate of growth of women joining boards, the Russell 3000 would achieve gender parity by 2030. This is significant progress from Q4 2017 when gender parity was expected by 2048. 

July 2019 marked the first time all S&P 500 companies had at least one female director on their boards.



improved stock performance over all-male boards 

Credit Suisse conducted a six-year global research study showing that women on boards improve business performance for key metrics, including stock performance; companies with women directors on their boards outperformed shares of comparable businesses with all-male boards by 26 percent.


higher earnings for companies with female directors

A 2017 study by Morgan Stanley Capital International found that United States companies with three or more female directors reported earnings that were 45 percent higher per share than those companies with no female directors. 

There has been a greater correlation between stock performance and the presence of women on a board since the financial crisis in 2008. Companies with women on their boards significantly outperformed others when the recession occurred. 

A 2012 University of California, Berkeley study found that companies with women on their boards are more likely to “create a sustainable future” by, among other things, instituting strong governance structures with a high level of transparency.

Since 2018, based on research indicating superior market performance, BlackRock recommends at least two women directors serve on boards of companies in which it chooses to invest.

Several European countries have instituted requirements mandating board seats on companies headquartered in their nations to be held by women directors. Germany, Norway, France, Spain, Iceland, and the Netherlands, among others, all have such requirements.