Apply for the Catalyst Award
Showcase Your Organization’s Initiatives to Advance Women by Sharing Your Story
The global Catalyst Award attracts organizations from around the world. Every year, Catalyst identifies and receives applications from companies of all sizes, regions, and industries whose groundbreaking initiatives to advance women, including women from marginalized ethnic and racial groups as well as across other intersections of identity, make them eligible for the Award.
Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) is a strategic imperative for organizational success. That is a proven fact. How you get there… that’s the real story. By applying for the Catalyst Award, your company or firm will:
- Benefit from an external perspective on your organization’s culture and DEI efforts.
- Showcase your internal and external strategies, talent, and progress.
- Learn how to continuously improve your efforts.
- Show your commitment to being an employer of choice.
Process and Criteria
The Catalyst Award Evaluation Committee is a team of internal and cross-functional Catalyst staff who specialize in evaluating organizational behavior and DEI initiatives. The Committee assesses submissions through research such as telephone interviews and selects a small number of initiatives to examine further during intensive, onsite visits. Through interviews and focus groups with executives, senior women, human resources professionals, and other employees, the Committee gauges each initiative’s effectiveness and impact. Organizations selected for site visits receive more than 500 hours of review and may request a meeting to discuss strengths and opportunities for improvement with Committee members. The Committee and Catalyst executive leadership then determine the winners.
To apply for the Catalyst Award, initiatives must meet several Eligibility Criteria (updated July 2021):
- There must be at least two women on the Board of Directors.
- Women must represent at least 20% of Band 1 executive leaders (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.
- Applications must have at least three years of complete data and supporting metrics, including for the start year and current year.
- Metrics must show a positive change between the starting year of the initiative and the current year.
- The Global CEO or Managing Partner must be available to accept the Award at our Awards Conference and Dinner.
- The organization must NOT have hired Catalyst for an in-depth consulting engagement in the past three years. The initiative must include significant work other than work led or created by Catalyst.
- The organization must NOT have applied for the Catalyst Award within the past two years.
- The organization must NOT have been involved in a merger with another organization in the past three years and must not be currently involved in a pending merger.
- The organization must NOT have divested a significant portion of its business in the past three years and must not be currently undergoing such a divestiture.
Once the initiative is accepted for nomination, the Catalyst Award Evaluation Committee measures each nominated initiative on its own merit and against previous Award winners, the current pool of nominees, and the seven criteria listed below:
- Strategy & Rationale
- Senior Leadership Activities
- Accountability & Transparency
- Employee Engagement
- Measurable Results
- May 2022: Deadline for application submission.
- May–June 2022: Preliminary application review.
- June–August 2022: Full application evaluations, including telephone interviews and additional data requests.
- August–September 2022: Selection for site visits.
- September–October 2022: Site visits.
- December 2022–January 2023: Winner selection.
- January 2023: Public announcement of winners.
- March 2023: Awards Conference and Dinner.
Application materials for the 2023 Catalyst Award will be posted here in February 2022.
The Catalyst Award is the premier recognition of organizational diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives driving representation and inclusion for women.
View the organizations with Catalyst Award-winning initiatives since the Catalyst Award began back in 1987.
Companies applying for the Catalyst Award will now be required to have more women, particularly women of color, executives.