Paradigm for Parity® Coalition More than Doubles in One Year with 60 Companies Pledging to Follow Action Plan to Achieve Gender Parity in Leadership

MassMutual and Other Leading Corporations Pledge to Achieve Gender Parity in the C-Suite by 2030

NEW YORK, Nov. 1, 2017 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Paradigm for Parity® coalition announced today that 60 CEOs from leading companies, including Anthem, Hershey, , United Technologies and Walmart have committed to achieving gender parity in leadership levels by 2030. Today's news more than doubles the membership of Paradigm for Parity®, a volunteer-run organization of business leaders, former CEOs and executives, all of whom are committed to implementing the coalition's 5-Point Action plan to level the playing field for women in the corporate world. As we approach the anniversary of the organization's launch in December 2016 with 27 companies, Paradigm for Parity®, now with 60 companies, has seen a fast pace of growth, representing more than four million employees worldwide.

"We applaud these 60 companies for stepping up and making the changes needed to promote women and better business outcomes," said Ellen Kullman, Co-Chair of the Paradigm for Parity® coalition. "To ensure women have equal representation in the C-suite and shared opportunities to become corporate leaders, we created the Paradigm for Parity® action plan to equip companies with an actionable roadmap to meet their diversity goals. We look forward to building on this progress and working with even more companies to turn their diversity goals into business realities."

"Pledging to the Paradigm for Parity movement is a natural extension of our efforts to advance diversity and inclusion and to ensure we do what's right for our customers, our workforce, and our communities," said Roger Crandall, Chairman, President and CEO of MassMutual. "By seeking and valuing diverse perspectives and advocating for fairness, equality and inclusion, we are fostering a progressive, innovative culture that enables us to achieve our purpose of helping people secure their future and protecting the ones they love."

"UTC is committed to the advancement of women in leadership positions -- and we are proud to join the Paradigm for Parity Coalition to put this commitment into action," said Greg Hayes, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of United Technologies Corporation.

"As a company that is committed to helping people live their best lives, Thrive Global is proud to join the Paradigm for Parity to ensure women have equal access and opportunity to reach corporate leadership," said Arianna Huffington, Founder and CEO of Thrive Global. "We know diverse and inclusive businesses perform better and we look forward to working with Paradigm for Parity to bring more women into the c-suite."

"Creating opportunity for all of our associates is one of Walmart's guiding principles, and that's why we took the Paradigm for Parity® pledge--to continue to ensure that women succeed at all levels of leadership. With more than one million women working for Walmart across the world, their success is vital to our future. The Paradigm for Parity® action plan will help us accelerate the important work already underway that makes Walmart a great place for everyone to work," said Jacqui Canney, Executive Vice President, Global People Division of Walmart.

Data show that companies that have a strong representation of women in leadership levels have better business outcomes than those that do not have a diverse leadership. In fact, companies that are more diverse are 15% more likely to have financial returns above their industry averages, according to research from McKinsey & Company. Additionally, companies with 50% women in senior operating roles show 19% higher return on equity (ROE) on average, according to Credit Suisse.

Launched in December 2016 by a diverse group of current and former women CEOS and business leaders, Paradigm for Parity® is committed to working with companies and executives to achieve a new norm in corporate leadership: one in which women and men have equal power, status and opportunity. The coalition created a 5-Point Action Plan comprised of synergistic steps that, when implemented together, will catalyze change and enable substantial progress towards gender parity by 2030.

The five points are:

-- Eliminating or minimizing unconscious bias in the workplace;

-- Significantly increasing the number of women in senior operating roles,
   with the near-term goal of at least 30% representation in all leadership

-- Measuring targets and maintaining accountability by providing regular
   progress reports;

-- Basing career progress on business results and performance, rather than
   physical presence in the office; and

-- Providing sponsors, not just mentors, to women well positioned for long
   term success.

CEOs from the following 60 companies have committed to achieve gender parity in corporate leadership: 72andSunny, Accenture, Adecco Group, ALOM, American Electric Power, Anthem, Inc., APCO Worldwide, Association of Latino Professionals for America (ALPFA), AstraZeneca, Bank of America, Bloomberg, Broadway Angels, Burson Marsteller, Cargill, Co: Collective, Coca-Cola, DSC Logistics, Eastman Chemical Company, Edison International, Egon Zehnder, Ernst & Young, Equinix, Farient Advisors, First Source, LLC, Frontier Communications, HealthHelp, Heidrick & Struggles, Henry Schein, Inc., Hershey, Huffington Post, Ingersoll Rand, KeyCorp, Lieberman Research Worldwide, Linkage, LinkedIn, Manpower Group, MassMutual, McKinsey & Company, Meredith Corporation, MetricStream, Monsanto, NeoGenomics, Newmont Mining Corp., Nordstrom, Out & Equal, The Perkins Fund, Principal, Project Glimmer, Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, SAP, Skillsoft, Spencer Stuart, Synchrony Financial, TDIndustries, Inc., Thrive Global, United Technologies, VF Corporation, Voya Financial, Walmart and Willis Towers Watson.

About the Paradigm for Parity® Movement

The Paradigm for Parity® coalition is composed of CEOs, senior executives, founders, board members and business academics who are committed to achieving a new norm in corporate leadership: one in which women and men have equal power, status, and opportunity.

The coalition created the Paradigm for Parity® 5-Point Action Plan for corporations to accelerate the pace of gender equity in senior executive roles. This unique agenda defines bold and specific actions that, taken together and simultaneously implemented as a package, will catalyze change and enable today's business executives to secure the best leaders of tomorrow. Visit or follow us on Twitter using @p4parity to learn more about this exciting initiative.