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Congresswoman Joyce Beatty

Representing the 3rd District of Ohio

Chair Beatty Applauds New NASDAQ Diversity & Inclusion Proposal

Dec 2, 2020
Press Release

WASHINGTON, D.C.—NASDAQ announced this week a proposal, filed with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), requiring greater board diversity among the nearly 3,000 publicly-traded companies that list on their exchange. If approved, companies listed on the NASDAQ would have to disclose the diversity data of their board of directors, as well as require companies to “have, or explain why they do not have, at least two diverse directors, including one who self-identifies as female and one who self-identifies as either an underrepresented minority or LGBTQ+.” In response to the proposed rule, U.S. Congresswoman Joyce Beatty (OH-03), Chair of the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion, issued the following statement:

“I applaud NASDAQ’s new proposal to require publicly-traded companies on its exchange to disclose the diversity data of their board of directors and require diverse representation on such boards. Specifically, I want to recognize the leadership of NASDAQ CEO Adena Friedman for taking this important step toward better reflecting the rich diversity of America. Any effort by a company to oppose this effort or threaten to move exchanges in retaliation should be called out for what they seek to protect: smoke-filled board rooms of days long since forgotten that purposefully excluded women and minorities simply because of what they looked like.

Back in 2016, the SEC Advisory Committee on Small and Emerging Companies recommended the SEC require board diversity disclosure, but the SEC’s passive leadership since has not had the courage to act on this well-laid recommendation. As the chair of the Subcommittee on Diversity and Inclusion, I have lead the effort in Congress to highlight the need for more transparency and accountability when it comes to diversity and inclusion and shined a light on companies that are stuck in the past. That is why I look forward to working with the new SEC Chair to help implement standards that embrace all Americans and the future.”

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