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In 2015, DirectWomen proudly presented its first Board Diversity Awards to General Electric Company and The Procter & Gamble Company. The Award honors corporations that have served as leaders in the effort to achieve board diversity, as illustrated by the critical mass of women directors on their boards and their strong commitment to diversity in the boardroom, the C-Suite, and the company.
Both of 2015's award recipients have long been celebrated as leaders in corporate diversity efforts. For example, both GE and P&G have won awards from DirectWomen’s partner Catalyst in recognition of such efforts. And, in 2009, DirectWomen honored the late G.G. Michelson with the Sandra Day O’Connor Board Excellence Award, in part for her service as GE’s first woman board member. Today, General Electric Company’s 16-member board includes four women. The Procter & Gamble Company’s 12-member board includes five women. The representation of women on both boards is well above the national average because of purposeful leadership that recognizes the value of corporate diversity.
GE’s Jeffrey R. Immelt, Chairman and CEO, accepted the Award on the company’s behalf. Dr. Susan Desmond-Hellmann, Chief Executive Officer of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and a Director of Facebook Inc. and The Procter & Gamble Company, accepted the Award for P&G.