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Institute of Directors Welcomes Diversity on Chorus Board

Institute of Directors Welcomes Diversity on Chorus Board

The announcement of New Chorus's board, established with 50 per cent of the directorships held by women, was welcomed by IoD President Denham Shale.

If the demerger of Telecom proceeds, New Chorus will be governed by six non-executive directors: Sue Sheldon (chair), Anne Urlwin, Clayton Wakefield, Jon Hartley, Keith Turner and Prue Flacks.

"All the directors have a very strong governance background, and the board will be well equipped to handle the challenges of the new regime," said Mr Shale. "At a time when there is focus on the lack of women on boards, it is gratifying to see a high profile board established with a real gender balance."

The IoD is actively promoting diversity on boards with the establishment of its chairmen’s mentoring programme. Launching later this year, up to 30 of the country’s most influential chairmen and directors will mentor experienced, “board-ready" women directors in a year-long initiative.

The programme will help women to develop connections with top business leaders and gain the skills that will allow them to achieve board positions on large companies.

Currently, only 9.32 per cent of directorships of NZX-listed boards are held by women.

“The IoD is very aware of the need to promote board diversity generally in New Zealand,” said Mr Shale, “The current pool of operating directors needs to be supplemented to ensure continuing good governance in our country.”

Available to IoD members only, the mentoring programme is designed to find and foster women who already have experience on the boards of listed companies, unlisted public companies, large private companies, SOEs and other government organisations and not-for-profits.

Other moves to boost board diversity in 2012 include a proposed rule change by NZX, obliging all publicly listed companies to declare their number of female directors and senior managers.

In Australia, similar moves led to a substantial increase in the numbers of female directors appointed to the boards of ASX top-200 companies.

The Institute of Directors (IoD) provides education, information and advocacy for company directors. Our members work in corporations ranging from SMEs to listed companies, public sector organisations, not-for-profit companies, large private companies and smaller family concerns.

ENDS

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