The Boardroom Is Still the Boys' Room

Everyone agrees boards are overwhelmingly male. But there’s a gender gap over how to fix that
Only 12.6 percent of Standard and Poor's 1500 companies' directors are women Photo illustration by 731; Photograph: Peter Christopher/Masterfile

Maybe the men who dominate U.S. boardrooms could use those “binders full of women” Mitt Romney says he asked for a decade ago to seed his gubernatorial cabinet in Massachusetts. About 21 percent of new members named to the boards of companies on the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index last year were female, a decline of 9 percent over the past five years, according to executive recruiter Spencer Stuart. And women represent just 16 percent of all directors at companies in the index, barely above the 15 percent level of 2006, Spencer Stuart says.

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