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Interview Opportunity: Leadership Diversity Index rankings announced by Corporate Knights

Wednesday, October 29th 2008 10:09:48am

The information released by Corporate Knights earlier this morning (5 am, October 29) has been updated, with percentages added for clarity.  Percentages represent the number of Board and Top 3 C-Suite members who are women and/or a visible minority.

Interview Opportunity

Attention News/Business/National/Careers/Diversity Reporters and Assignment Editors

Canadian Leadership Diversity Index results announced by Corporate Knights magazine

(Toronto, Canada, October 29, 2008)  Released today, the current issue of Corporate Knights Magazine contains the second-annual Corporate Knights Leadership Diversity Index. The Index identifies the top ten Canadian companies which have achieved the greatest visible minority and female representation in both the boardroom and the executive C-level suite.

The top performing companies in the 2008 Corporate Knights Leadership Diversity Index are as follows:

British Columbia Hydro and Power Authority - 72.7%
Vancouver City Savings C.U. - 72.7%
Canada Post - 60%
Canadian Broadcasting Corp. - 54.5%
Husky Energy Inc. - 53.3%
Hydro One - 45.5%
Westport Innovations - 45.5%
Corus Entertainment Inc. - 45.5%
IBM - 37.5%
McKesson Canada - 36.4%

BC Hydro and Vancouver City Savings Credit Union (Vancity) tied as the most diverse company, with an overall score of 72.7 per cent. Canada Post, CBC, and Husky Energy rounded out the top five, all with overall scores above 50 per cent.

With so many crown corporations in the top 10, Corporate Knights asked Moya Greene, CEO of Canada Post, whether being a crown corporation influences Canada Post's commitment to diversity. "Our government is for all Canadians, regardless of their gender or ethnic origin," she says. "[As a crown corporation], I believe you have a greater responsibility to do everything you can to reflect the diversity of the country."

But the findings continue to identify a failure in corporations to reflect Canada's demographics. Of the 151 companies analyzed, almost 25 per cent of executive-level teams were composed of only white males. Twenty-seven percent have no females (up from 24 per cent in 2007), and 74 per cent have no visible minorities (down from 75 per cent in 2007).

In comparison, only 12 Fortune 500 companies, or just over 2 percent, are headed by women. This is up slightly from 2007, when there were just 10 female CEOs. As of 2008, no woman leads a Fortune 100 company.

This year, Corporate Knights investigated other dimensions of diversity, including the workplace challenges of recent immigrants, aboriginals, and disabled persons.

Background - How was the CK Leadership Diversity Index determined?

Using the most recent financial and proxy statements available, Corporate Knights examined companies in the S&P/TSX 60, the top 50 on the FP500 and/or ROB1000, the top 25 holdings of the Ethical Canadian Index Fund, and additional companies with significant operations in the communications, chemicals, utilities, retail, mining, oil and gas, finance, and forestry sectors. In the case of a subsidiary, the parent company's data was used.

For the full report see Corporate Knights Magazine Vol. 7.2 or visit www.corporateknights.ca/diversity

To schedule interviews with Melissa Shin, Managing Editor, please contact:
Don Huff, Environmental Communication Options, at 416-972-7404, (cell) 416-805-7720 or huffd@huffstrategy.com

About Corporate Knights
: Founded in 2002, Corporate Knights Inc. is an independent Canadian-based media company focused on prompting and reinforcing sustainable development in Canada.