2006 UC Davis Study of California Women Business Leaders
A Census of Women Directors and Executive Officers

The UC Davis Graduate School of Management’s Center for Women and Leadership in partnership with the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives is proud to publish the second annual “UC Davis Study of California Women Business Leaders: A Census of Women Directors and Executive Officers.”

Our study details the presence of women at the very top of the 400 largest publicly held corporations headquartered in the state. Our findings paint a disappointing picture of female representation on the boards and in the executive suites of these high-profile companies.

It’s clear that women continue to be an untapped resource. The same innovative thinking that drives the world’s eighth largest economy is not propelling women into top leadership positions at the largest public companies in the Golden State.

This year we made several changes to the study to reflect a more comprehensive analysis of California’s leading women business leaders. First, we doubled the size of the census to include the 400 largest California public companies. Second, we broadened our definition of executive officers. Widening the scope presents a better picture of how women are represented in executive leadership and on governing boards of smaller companies.

The Center for Women and Leadership and the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives extend special thanks to Westaff, Inc. for its sponsorship of the center and census research.

The census findings were released on Nov. 16, 2006, at the first UC Davis Forum on Women and Leadership, a half-day forum sponsored by Sonnenschein, Nath, & Rosenthal LLP and Santa Clara Valley National Bank.

Media Release and Company Contacts

Selected Media Coverage

Video News Stories (Broadcast on KVIE-TV)

Study Archives

The InterOrganization Network

UC Davis Graduate School of Management and the Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives have partnered to join ION, the InterOrganization Network. ION is a consortium of eight regional organizations in the U.S. that advocate that advocate for the advancement of women to positions of power in the business world, especially to boards of directors and executive suites of public companies. These organizations, often in collaboration with a university partner, publish annual census reports on the status of women directors and executive officers in public companies in their respective geography.

Other ION members:

Resources and Related Links

  • Forum for Women Entrepreneurs and Executives (FWE&E) – A exclusive and highly-valued professional, educational and social organization for women entrepreneurs and executives and their eco-system partners who are actively engaged in high-tech, high-growth companies.
  • BoardMatch – FWE&E’s placement service that identifies and recommends experienced and qualified women for openings on public and private company boards.
  • Professional BusinessWomen of California – An organization designed to meet the leadership, skill and networking needs of California women throughout their careers and across industries.
  • State of California Commission on the Status of Women – Established in 1965, the only state agency specifically dedicated to protecting the interests of California women. The commission works to ensure that women have equal rights and opportunity and that enacted legislation does not discriminate against women or otherwise undermine their status or their opportunities.
  • Catalyst – A national research and advisory organization working with businesses and the professions to build inclusive environments and expand opportunities for women at work.