It should come as a shock to no one that there is a serious lack of gender diversity in C-suites across the country. Currently, just over 4 percent of Fortune 500 companies are led by a female CEO, while only 19 percent of their senior management positions are held by women. In the advertising industry, a mere 11 percent of creative directors are female.
If you work in marketing, chances are you know Harris Millard. While much has changed as far as women entering leadership roles since she started her career at Ladies’ Home Journal in 1976, there is still work to be done in advancing the careers of women. That’s why MediaLink has initiatives to put forth diverse slates of candidates to companies looking for executive talent. In February, MediaLink launched a practice to arm more corporate boards with marketers, including more women. And in April, MediaLink tapped marketing vet Dana Anderson as its CMO as the firm begins to expand into Europe after being acquired by Cannes Lions parent company Ascential. “If you look at the board members of Fortune 1,000 companies right now, there are 9,800 of them, [and] only 50 are people who are marketers and digital experts—that would be less than half of 1 percent,” Harris Millard says. “We have high-visibility women in our company and in our search practice, [we’re] very sensitive about presenting a diverse slate in establishing this board practice.”