About Catalyst CEO Champions For Change

Women represent about 51% of the US population.1 They earn around 60% of all master’s degrees in the United States2 and contribute an estimated $24.8 billion in labor every day to the nation’s gross domestic product (GDP).3 Yet only about 5% of CEOs in corporate America are women.4 Only 26.5% of executives5 and only 26% of board seats are held by women in the S&P 500.6 For women of color, the numbers are even more dismal.7 We have to change that. Because progress for women is progress for everyone. That’s why on International Women’s Day 2017, we launched Catalyst CEO Champions For Change.

Today, our group includes more than 60 high-profile CEOs whose companies represent more than 10 million employees and over $3 trillion in revenue globally.8 These leaders are drawing a line in the sand and publicly pledging to advance more women and women of color into senior leadership positions and onto their boards. And they are sharing their data on women’s advancement so we can collectively measure and report our progress.

Affirmation of Support

We believe in the power of diversity and inclusion. As business leaders we know that making room for everyone to succeed at work is not only the right thing to do, it’s the smart thing. It improves innovation, boosts corporate performance, and energizes employee engagement.9

Progress has been made, but there is still much to do. Women are not represented equally at all levels of management in organizations. Only 26% of S&P 500 board seats are held by women.10 And, women of color are underrepresented on boards and in senior levels of management broadly.11 It’s time for more rapid change and that requires taking a bold stand.

As senior leaders, we hold ourselves and our teams accountable to make change happen and accelerate diversity, inclusion and equality of opportunity within our organizations. We won’t rest until we can all succeed together.

To that end, we commit to continuing to strengthen the diversity and inclusion metrics, policies, and practices across our organizations. We commit to reviewing and improving the pipeline of women of diverse backgrounds for advancement and empowering them with a strong support system. We commit to identifying and working to reduce any structural barriers or unconscious bias that may exist and to doing everything we can to continue to build an inclusive workplace culture.

We will drive these actions with Catalyst, a global thought leader and partner in the advancement of equality of opportunity, regardless of gender for more than 50 years. And, in partnership with Catalyst, we will publicly report on our collective progress, so we can continue to learn, improve, and accelerate change and inclusive prosperity for everyone.

Organizational Commitment

On behalf of my organization, I will work to:

Personal Commitment

As a leader, I personally commit to:

Learn more.

  1. U.S. Census Bureau, “QuickFacts.”
  2. National Center for Education Statistics, “Table 318.10: Degrees Conferred by Postsecondary Institutions, by Level of Degree and Sex of Student: Selected Years, 1869-70 through 2028-29,” Digest of Education Statistics, 2018 Tables and Figures (2019).
  3. This figure accounts for the approximately $23.2 million in unpaid labor women perform each day, based on average hourly wage rates. Catalyst analysis of 2018 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Bureau of Economic Analysis. Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Table 22: Persons at Work in Nonagricultural Industries by Age, Sex, Race, Hispanic or Latino Ethnicity, Marital Status, and Usual Full- or Part-Time Status,” Current Population Survey, Household Data Annual Averages 2018 (2019); Bureau of Economic Analysis, U.S. Department of Commerce, “Table 1.1.5. Gross Domestic Product (A) (Q),” National Income and Product Accounts (2019); Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Table A-1. Current and Real (Constant 1982-1984 Dollars) Earnings for All Employees on Private Nonfarm Payrolls, Seasonally Adjusted, December 2018,” Real Earnings News Release (January 11, 2019); OECD, “Employment: Time Spent in Paid and Unpaid Work, by Sex,” OECD Stat (2019).
  4. Catalyst, Women CEOs of the S&P 500 (October 4, 2019).
  5. Catalyst, Pyramid: Women in S&P 500 Companies (September 1, 2019).
  6. Spencer Stuart, 2019 United States Spencer Stuart Board Index (2019): p. 8.
  7. Catalyst, Quick Take: Women of Color in the United States.
  8. Catalyst analysis of Catalyst CEO Champions For Change companies.
  9. Catalyst, Quick Take: Why Diversity and Inclusion Matter.
  10. Spencer Stuart, 2019 United States Spencer Stuart Board Index (2019): p. 8.
  11. Alliance for Board Diversity, Missing Pieces: The 2018 Board Diversity Census of Women and Minorities on Fortune 500 Boards (2019); Catalyst, Women in S&P 500 Companies by Race/Ethnicity and Level (October 12, 2017).