Catalyst Updates Eligibility Criteria for Its Preeminent Catalyst Award (Media Release)July 21, 2021
Companies now will be required to have more executive representation for women, particularly women of color.
New York, New York, July 21, 2021 — The Catalyst Award—Catalyst’s coveted signature recognition of diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) honoring innovative and impactful organizational initiatives that accelerate the advancement of women through workplace inclusion—is updating its criteria.
The updated eligibility criteria bolster the required representation of women, particularly women from marginalized ethnic and racial groups, at the executive level for organizations to reflect the practice of best-in-class companies to create equitable organizations.
For the 2023 Catalyst Award:
- Women must represent at least 20% of Band 1 executive leaders (those one or two reporting levels from the CEO or managing partner).
- For initiatives headquartered in any region where it is legal to collect data on race/ethnicity:
- There must be one woman from a marginalized ethnic or racial group on the board of directors or in Band 1.
- In addition, in companies whose Band 1 exceeds 20 people, 5% of Band 1 employees must be women from marginalized ethnic or racial groups.
Supported by Catalyst research on the importance of women’s representation at the executive level, the new criteria requiring at least 20% representation of women in the top band is an increase from 10% and better reflects the standards to which companies should be held.
“The Catalyst Award reflects progress, not perfection, and holds companies to a standard of excellence. Today we’re raising our standards to keep the Catalyst Award at the forefront of diversity, equity, and inclusion,” said Catalyst President & CEO Lorraine Hariton. “Our new requirements ensure that Catalyst Award-winning initiatives will continue to showcase exemplary, real-life examples of how to create workplaces that work for women and everyone.”
Given annually to workplace initiatives globally since 1987, the Catalyst Award has recognized 103 initiatives from 91 organizations. Catalyst Award-winning initiatives must meet a minimum standard of excellence and include data to assess impact. Once eligible, initiatives undergo a year-long, rigorous evaluation process.
Winners are recognized at the annual Catalyst Awards Conference and Dinner, one of the largest gatherings of CEOs worldwide that is also attended by thousands of business leaders, executives, and DEI professionals around the world.
The application for the 2023 Award will be posted on the Catalyst website in early 2022. Learn more about the Catalyst Award.
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Catalyst is a global nonprofit working with some of the world’s most powerful CEOs and leading companies to help build workplaces that work for women. Founded in 1962, Catalyst drives change with pioneering research, practical tools, and proven solutions to accelerate and advance women into leadership—because progress for women is progress for everyone.
Naomi R. Patton
Vice President, Global Communications
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