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Corporate Board Composition Study Shows Modest Gains for Diversity

A study organized by the Alliance for Board Diversity in collaboration with Deloitte analyzed the participation of diverse professionals on boards of directors across America’s largest companies. The study found that, overall, diversity in top company boardrooms is growing at a modest pace. In 2016, women and minorities held 35.9 percent of board seats in Fortune 100 companies compared to 30.1 percent in 2010, and 28.8 percent in 2004. The study reviewed data of 492 companies and 5,440 board seats from 2012-2016 across the Fortune 500. Some of the study’s findings:

  • Currently, 65 percent of Fortune 100 boards have greater than 30 percent board diversity, compared to the Fortune 500 where that percentage drops to just under 50 percent of boards.
  • The percentage of Caucasian/White women currently holding Fortune 500 board seats has increased by 21.2 percent since 2012, and the number of Caucasian/White men has decreased by 6.4 percent.
  • There has been an increase in the Fortune 500 of African American/Black women board members by 18.4 percent since 2012, while the total number of African American male board members in the Fortune 500 had only an increase of 1 percent.