Knowledge Center

2008 Catalyst Census of Women Corporate Officers and Top Earners of the FP500

In the 2008 Catalyst Census of Women Corporate Officers and Top Earners of the FP500, Catalyst tracks the progress that corporate Canada has made in this area over time, including an account of the number of women corporate officers at the top 500 companies in Canada as ranked by the Financial Post 500 (FP500), data on top-earning women corporate officers at these companies, and data comparisons by industry. This report is the sixth in a biannual series that assesses the status of women in corporate leadership of the largest companies in Canada.

  • Catalyst analyzed the corporate officers and top earners of each company in the FP500, including publicly traded and privately held companies, crown corporations, and cooperatives as of June 3, 2008.

  • Companies verified the total number of corporate officers, the most highly compensated individuals listed in the management proxies, and the name, gender, title, and line/staff status of each officer. Our verification rate was 95.8 percent. For companies that did not verify this information, data obtained from public records was reported.  

In 2008, women’s representation as corporate officers rose to 16.9 percent, an increase of 1.8 percentage points since 2006 and greater than the 1.1 percentage point increase from 2002 to 2006. The increase in women’s representation among corporate officers was driven by private and crown corporations. Women’s representation among corporate officers of public companies remained stagnant. Meanwhile, since 2002, approximately one-third of FP500 companies have had no women corporate officers. In corporate officer subcategories, women held only 11.4 percent of line roles and comprised only 5.6 percent of top earners. Women led only 30, or 6.0 percent, of FP500 companies.