"Companies have come to the realization that in this time of disruption and change, the 'traditional' perspective on governance is no longer sufficient. New voices are needed." -Jill Ader, Chairwoman, Egon Zehnder
Organizations that do not seek to cultivate more diverse and inclusive leaders will risk losing great talent, cultivating toxic work environments, compromising performance, and potentially damaging the brand’s value. In order to succeed, organizations must build bridges constructively and respectfully, creating cultures where everyone can contribute.
“There just aren’t enough qualified diverse candidates.”
“We’ve been successful, so we don’t want to rock the boat and change up the board.”
Whether you nod or shake your head when you read those statements, they come up time and time again when diversity and inclusion are on the boardroom agenda. Multiple studies demonstrate the link between diversity and better financial performance, and a diverse boardroom also allows for the perspectives of key stakeholders, including shareholders and consumers. How do boards increase diversity in their membership, and what’s the best process for finding candidates beyond the usual networks?
In the first part of a series of programs, speakers examined the latest trends and insights for building bridges within organizations and accessing whether your board facilitates optimal board refreshment. Our acknowledged thought leaders discussed leading practices for identifying new directors and the state of diversity in the boardroom and around the world based on findings from Egon Zehnder’s Board Diversity Report, and the impact of the California quota law.
To view the presentation slides, select the Event Summary drop-down below.
Presented to you by the NACD Northern California Chapter and Ascend Pinnacle
Partner in the San Francisco Office Corporate Department, Morrison & Foerster LLP
Jackie Liu is a partner in the Corporate Department of Morrison & Foerster’s San Francisco office. She co-chairs the firm’s Global Corporate Department of over 400 attorneys. She engages in a general corporate and transactional practice, with special emphasis on corporate counseling of public companies, mergers and acquisitions, and the China practice.
Liu regularly advises public companies on corporate governance matters, including disagreements between board and management, succession planning, investor relations, director and officer fiduciary duties, and board best practices, and she counsels boards and special committees in connection with conflicts of interest, proxy contests, and other corporate control efforts. Liu serves as outside general counsel to a number of public companies with whom she has worked with for over 10 years and provides big picture, critical, value-adding strategic advice. She also counsels public companies on disclosure matters and associated liability considerations, including those relating to the federal securities laws, Sarbanes-Oxley, Dodd-Frank, and NYSE and NASDAQ rules and regulations. Her knowledge of SEC-reporting requirements is a valuable addition to counseling on public company M&A transactions. Liu has lectured at seminars and conferences and written articles on various ’33 Act and ’34 Act law matters, and she is a staff member of the Practising Law Institute.
Sarah Van Dyck leads Egon Zehnder’s US Consumer Practice and is a core member of the Chief Marketing and Digital Practices. Based in San Francisco, she advises both industry leaders and emerging disruptors on executive search, leadership development, and board advisory services. Her 25 years of experience as a marketing executive with consumer and technology companies have shown her that organizational capacity is built when courageous and compassionate leaders invest in the potential of their teams.
Prior to joining Egon Zehnder, Van Dyck was VP of Global Brand Marketing at Rosetta Stone. Previously, she was a marketing executive at LivingSocial, as well as managing director of MODO Group, where she oversaw global brand strategy initiatives for clients including Microsoft, Starbucks, Grupo Modelo, and Sony Ericsson. She began her marketing career at Procter & Gamble.
Van Dyck received an MBA from INSEAD and a BA in History from Brown University. Outside of work, she enjoys watching her two teenage children develop their own passions and interests. She’s grateful they share their parents’ sense of adventure and curiosity so the family can explore the four corners of the earth together.
Founder and Leader of Technology and Communications Practice, Egon Zehnder
Martha Josephson, based in Palo Alto, is the founder and leader of the global Digital segment of Egon Zehnder’s Technology and Communications Practice. She advises digital media companies in Silicon Valley and has deep experience recruiting talent to develop the digital capabilities of consumer companies. She conducts both senior management and board director searches and provides board effectiveness consulting.
Before joining Egon Zehnder, Josephson was a consultant for McKinsey & Company, based in New York, where she advised consumer companies on turnaround efforts and post-merger integration. She was also managing editor of the Asian Venture Capital Journal, a media and conference company based in Hong Kong, and executive director of Hong Kong Venture Capital Association, a business networking group.
Josephson has an AB from Princeton University, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude, and an MBA from the Columbia Graduate School of Business. In 2011, she was a member of Fortune magazine’s Executive Dream Team. In How Google Works, by Eric Schmidt and Jonathan Rosenberg, she is described as “not technically a Googler, but as true a partner as can be found.” Josephson is also an official commentator for The Information, an online publication about technology and media. She is involved in The Boardlist, which helps find opportunities for female board-ready talent. When not working, she is a voracious reader.
Member, Ascend Pinnacle; Director Emeritus, NACD Northern California Chapter Board
Evelyn Dilsaver had a long career as a finance executive before making the leap to corporate and nonprofit boards. She built her career at Ernst & Young, then subsequently as a controller at a bank, and finally at Charles Schwab, where she was president and CEO of its investment management operations and oversaw its $210 billion assets-under-management business. She left in 2007 and has since served on nine corporate boards, four public and six nonprofit boards.
Dilsaver's board portfolio is very diverse, ranging in revenue size of $200 million to $17 billion and in diverse industries ranging from asset management, consumer products, and health care to consulting and real estate. She currently serves as audit chair on two public company boards, Tempur Sealy and Health Equity, as well as on large private corporations including Blue Shield of California as chair of Compensation, Bailard Real Estate Fund, and the global consulting company Protiviti. In addition, she serves as director emeritus for the NACD Northern California Chapter Board.
Member, Ascend Pinnacle; Chair, NACD Northern California Chapter Board
Dennis Wu is the managing partner and cofounder of WuHoover & Co. LLP, a professional CPA firm. Before WuHoover, he had a 37-year career at Deloitte & Touche and was the founding national partner of Deloitte's Chinese Services Group and also served in numerous other managing partner roles, including Deloitte's Financial Services Industry Group in Northern California. He also led numerous diversity projects and was one of five national leaders for the firm's diversity initiative. Wu is the chair of both the board of Recology and the board of the NACD Northern California Chapter, and he has previously served on two NASDAQ-listed companies. He is also the chair of the San Francisco Chapter of the Asian Pacific Islander American Public Affairs Association and a member of the Board of Directors of the Committee of 100, a national organization of prominent Chinese Americans. Wu is a former president of the Commonwealth Club of California and the Berkeley Haas Alumni Association.