Minnesota May Attract Top Female Talent

GMI Ratings released today its third study this year of gender diversity on corporate boards of directors. The current study provides a comprehensive quantitative state-by-state analysis of gender diversity on the boards of Russell 3000 companies headquartered in the 50 U.S. states.

Key findings include:

  • Country-wide: 36% of companies have no women on their boards of directors
  • Regional: The Midwest region leads the nation in boardroom gender diversity
  • State Rankings: Among states with more than 50 companies, Texas has the highest percentage  of companies (52%)with no women on corporate boards, compared with 15% for Minnesota
  • Industries: Energy companies have the highest percentage of boards with no women (61%)

From the report:

Gender diversity on corporate boards varies widely by US state and region, but the major driver of this variation appears to be industry. Female board participation is higher in areas where industries like consumer products or financials predominate, reflecting the fact that these industries generally perform better than others in terms of their percentage of female directors. Similarly, regions whose economies are based on more male-dominated industries, such as energy or technology, tend to lag in their percentage of female directors. Therefore, efforts to improve boardroom gender diversity in a given state or region may be best executed on an industry-specific basis…

These findings suggest that that the best way to address these regional inequities may be through industry-based initiatives. For example, companies in the energy and technology sectors may need to recruit female executives from below the C-suite level if the top positions in those industries are held to a disproportionate degree by men.

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