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Groundbreaking New Study Shows Opportunities for Women General Counsel on Boards

May 23, 2017
The majority of current and former general counsel sitting on company boards last year were women, according to a groundbreaking new study from Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP (Blakes).

The study, Blakes Board Report: Opportunities for Women General Counsel , reports that women comprised 59 per cent of general counsel (GCs) on the boards of publicly listed companies.

It also highlights that the small number of board positions held by GCs is growi
ng quickly.

“There is a long way to go to reach gender parity in Canada, but this study provides an inspiring outlook: there is opportunity out there for female GCs to use their business and strategic skillset to get on boards,” said Alison Jeffrey, Senior Adviser, Strategic Initiatives & Client Development Coaching at Blakes.

“In fact, there has never been a better time to leverage the GC’s value proposition as an ideal candidate for board positions.”

Blakes Board Report: Opportunities for Women General Counsel is the first benchmarking study in Canada on the professional background of board members, with a focus on legal professionals.

The research for the study was conducted on 2016 and 2015 proxy data of the 241 publicly listed companies that comprised the S&P/TSX Composite Index, which represented more than 75 per cent of the total market capitalization of the TSX. The study will now be published annually.

You can read the full report here. If you are interested in attending a future event with regards to women on boards, please contact Alison Jeffrey by email or at 416-863-4152.