EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen paid tribute to the work done by the Global Board Ready Women (GBRW) Task Force which came into being in 2012 to support the directive to apply 40 % Gender Diversity Quotas for all publicly listed corporations in Europe proposed by former EC Vice President Viviane Reding, during her third mandate from 2010 – 2014 as Commissioner for European Commissioner for Justice, Fundamental Rights and Citizenship.
The GBRW Task Force brought together executive women leaders from the private, academic, and public sectors who refused to let stand the remark frequently made at the timethat “there were not enough qualified women to fill the Board Positions”. By enlisting top European Business Schools with their alumnae lists of C-level executives, corporate governance professors and Boards of Governors, filled with industry captains from around the world, they created a data base of more than 8000 Board Ready women, thus dispelling the myth that there were not enough women to fill the board positions. They also created the first global criteria for Independent Board Members, regardless of gender and applied these criteria in vetting the board ready women candidates presented for consideration by the European publicly listed corporations.
UWE President Anne Nègre, who is member since the beginning of the GBRW, joined this tribute taking place on the eve of the “Global Board Ready Women Leadership Conference” organized by Forté Foundation and Phoenix Executive in Brussels on 08 November to analyze the progress made by the initiative and to prepare the next generation of women corporate leaders.
Besides the Business Schools, the GBRW worked tirelessly with professional women associations, the Association of Executive Search Consultants, and the Forte Foundation to promote the “Women on Boards” Directive , which came into law ten years after the GBRW began their work on 22 November 2022,