FLORIDA CORPORATE BOARD DIVERSITY INITIATIVE
INCREASING WOMEN ON CORPORATE BOARDS
WHO WE ARE
We are four preeminent women’s leadership organizations, the International Women’s Forums in Florida, Women Executive Leadership Florida, the Florida Chapters of Women Corporate Directors and 50/50 Women on Boards, which have come together to work collaboratively to promote the inclusion of women on corporate boards in Florida and to monitor the status of women on these boards. Our research partner is the Sykes College of Business at the University of Tampa and our corporate sponsor is the Knight Foundation.
Our mission is three-fold:
To increase the number of women on the boards of the Russell 3000 companies in Florida
To encourage all boards to become gender-balanced
To connect qualified female board candidates to open board opportunities.
Florida women call on Florida public companies to:
- All 70 companies with less than three women add at least one woman to their board
All 50 companies with three or more women who do not have gender balanced boards: increase to gender diversity, including at least one woman of color
All four companies who have achieved gender balance: maintain gender balance with at least one woman of color.
The Florida Census of Women Public Company Directors: 2023 is a collaboration of the International Women’s Forum in Florida, the Florida Women Corporate Directors, and 50/50 Women on Boards and Women’s Executive Leadership, to promote the inclusion of women on corporate boards in Florida and to monitor the status of women on these boards. Based on Russell 3000 rankings among the 25 states with more than 20 public companies, as of June 30, 2023, Florida is currently in second to last place.
This analysis compares the presence of women on boards at the 124 public companies in Florida on the R3000 with all R3000 companies to determine why Florida is underperforming. We looked at sector, company size, board size and both socio-economic and political factors and found no compelling reason for Florida companies’ lack of gender diversity.
Companies in Florida’s peer states have generally reached three or more women on their boards and are continuing to add more, while the bulk of Florida companies stand at two or less. Research suggests that companies with three women on Women Directors by Industry Sector their board experience greater benefits than companies with fewer women.
We conclude that there is an opportunity to increase awareness of Florida’s current board gender diversity numbers and to share information on resources that are available to find diverse candidates.
Florida continues to lag for gender diversity in boardrooms and is in second-to-last place among the 25 states with more than 20 public companies – just ahead of Nevada.
Florida is behind on almost every metric – across industries, company sizes, and board sizes. Florida has more small companies, which are typically less diverse, but that does not explain the gap, since Florida’s small companies are also less diverse than their US peers.
The bulk of new board appointments in Florida still go to men – with 65% of new board appointments being men, and only 35% women. As a result, growth in diversity has slowed.
The biggest opportunity is for all Florida boards with fewer than 3 women to add at least one more, especially the smaller companies and those with boards with less than 7 board members.