women in business, catalyst

Annual Diversity Report on Women in Business

Catalyst, a nonprofit group devoted to women in business, just released its annual report on how many women are on corporate boards and top business roles — and the numbers aren’t good.

Catalyst reported several key findings about representation of women at S&P 500 companies in 2015:

  • Women hold 4.2% of CEO positions (for a full list of Women CEOs of the S&P 500, click here)
  • Women account for only 19.9% of all board seats, up only 0.7% from 2014
  • Women were given only 26.9% of new directorships
  • Women hold 9.5% of top earner positions
  • Women hold 25.1% executive/senior-level officials and managers positions
  • Women make up 36.4% of first/mid-level officials and managers positions
  • Women account for 44.3% of total employees


“Our new Census shows little progress has been made at the board level, and even less progress has been made in the pipeline for women officers and directors—suggesting women are nowhere near the path to parity with men. Men continue to be overrepresented, holding more than their fair share of board seats and, in some cases, all the board seats,” Catalyst’s President and CEO Deborah Gillis, said in a press release.

Where does the U.S. stack up against international business?

“Unfortunately, these data indicate that the United States stands in stark contrast to other countries where intentional, bold action is being taken by businesses and governments to accelerate meaningful, sustainable change,” Gillis said. “U.S. companies are missing opportunities to achieve gender diversity.”

The Washington Post listed eight U.S. companies that have no women on their boards: Concho Resources,  Delphi Automotive, Dentsply Sirona, Diamond Offshore Drilling, Discovery Communications, Linear Technology, Qorvo, and TransDigm Group.

For another, broader take on women in top business roles, Bloomberg pointed to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP recent study of 2,500 global public companies, which found women were placed in less than 3 percent of new CEO positions.

“In January, the Government Accountability Office estimated it would take another 40 years before women reach parity in board seats among the S&P 500, even if they filled seats at twice the current rate,” Bloomberg reported.