Open Forum: Diversity on Australian boards

Women in boardroom 

Current efforts to address the lack of women and minority representation on Australian boards will be discussed by two Australian business leaders at a University of Western Sydney Open Forum.

The CEO Of the Australian Institute of Company Directors John Brogden AM, and co-founder of Women on Boards Claire Braund are the guest speakers at Diversity on Australian Boards held at UWS Parramatta on 24 June at 6pm.

The Australian Institute of Company Directors has set a target for 30 per cent of board seats to be filled by women by the end of 2018.

Rather than requesting government mandates for non-compliance, the Institute wants ASX 200 companies to voluntarily meet the target.

The UWS Director of Equity and Diversity and Chair of the Australian Multicultural Council, Dr Sev Ozdowski FAICD, says Australian companies must broaden their horizons to reach their potential.

"Australia has a proud history of talent speaking for itself, and aspiring female and minority background directors should be judged solely on the quality of their CVs," says Dr Ozdowski.

"People from diverse backgrounds bring a wide range of new experiences to the boardroom, and most companies now realise new skill sets and approaches are essential in the modern world."

"Everyone should be judged on what they know, not who they know, and I'm looking forward to hearing from our speakers about how they are working to ensure boardrooms are representative of modern Australia."

John Brogden joined the Australian Institute of Company Directors as Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer in January 2015. He is responsible for leading the overall organisation, representing directors on policy issues, maintaining excellence in education and building stakeholder understanding of directorship and governance. 

Claire Braund is a former journalist and public relations manager who co-founded Women on Boards Australia and the UK. The two organisations have over 30,000 members and work with leading global companies like PwC, HSBC, Google, Bank of New York Mellon and Thomson Reuters supporting their talent retention programs. 

Ends

22 June 2015

Mark Smith, Senior Media Officer

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