Last month, Akin Gump was proud to be a sponsor of the 2015 Breakfast of Corporate Champions & Symposium , which featured many notables, including the Chair of the Securities and Exchange Commission, Mary Jo White. This week, we highlight Chair White's Keynote Remarks, entitled "The Pursuit of Gender Parity in the American Boardroom", which can be found here.
In her remarks, Chair White concluded that while opportunities for women in the United States have never been greater, the boardroom remains a vital, remaining frontier where the playing field has just begun to level. She argues that the boardroom "is a critical playing field because corporate directors are among the most important gatekeepers in our financial system. Strong boards are indeed key to the success of the SEC’s mission to protect investors, maintain fair and efficient markets, and facilitate the capital formation that allows for the growth and innovation that sustains America’s economic strength. None of us wants qualified women to be denied their place in such a critical role. Not only do women deserve to be corporate directors in numbers by virtue of our qualifications, but we are also demonstrated adders of value once we get there. Achieving gender parity by 2025 will require deep commitment and concerted efforts by all of us. But make no mistake, however challenging, the goal is attainable. It is also a business and moral imperative."