Yesterday, California became the first state in the country to set a board quota for women.
The new state law will require any publicly traded California-based company to have at least one woman director on their boards by the end of next year.
The legislation, entitled SB 826, was first passed earlier this month by the California state legislature. California Governor Jerry Brown signed it into law last night, on the last day of September.
The law also stipulates that by the year 2021, companies with at least five directors would need to have two or three female directors, depending on the size of the board, or else face financial penalties.
In a letter to the California state Senate announcing his decision, Governor Brown wrote: “It’s high time corporate boards include the people who constitute more than half the ‘persons’ in America.”
Food For Thought
Is California's new law a necessary step toward achieving gender equity in the workplace, or an example of government overreach?