How to Find Qualified Women to Serve on Corporate Boards

"We want to add a woman to our board. We just don't know any" is a common lament among CEOs and Nominating Chairs when asked why their boards don't include women.

The truth is, it’s not hard to find qualified women to serve on corporate boards. In addition to executive search firms, there are many women’s business organizations that perform board searches. Many colleges and universities have women’s leadership programs that can help identify suitable candidates from their alumni network. Business and trade associations can be a good resource, also articles about women of achievement in business publications.

Not all qualified board candidates mirror the traditional director profile -- executives with C-titles. Companies may consider the full reach of senior executives who offer industry knowledge, operational experience and financial expertise.  College deans and professors, public sector leaders, attorneys and others can be terrific additions when building a diverse board.

How to find a qualified women director:

  • Work with an executive search firm.
  • Find a local women’s business organization that offers board searches services.
  • Search membership rosters of pertinent trade associations.
  • Contact your local university’s women’s leadership program.
  • Identify businesswomen who are quoted in the business media.