Good morning, Broadsheet readers. There are six giant tech companies that still refuse to share their employee diversity data, and Serena Williams just got some revenge. Read on to hear about the financial services company that is 39% female in its upper ranks. Stay safe out there if you’re in Juno’s path!
• The U.S. still lags. While female representation in Congress has reached a record high (20%), the U.S. still has a long way to go. The country ranks 33rd among 49 “high-income” nations when it comes to women in the national legislature and 12th in the rankings of cabinet level officials. What’s the only country with more female legislators than male? Rwanda. Pew Research Center
ALSO IN THE HEADLINES
• And then there were six. While Amazon, Google, Facebook and other tech companies have released their employee diversity numbers, six others — IBM, Oracle, Qualcomm, EMC, Broadcom and SanDisk — are holding out. IBM may be the most puzzling, given that it is led by a woman (CEO Ginni Rometty) and a spokesperson said the company has been committed to an “equal opportunity” workplace for decades. Fortune
• Barbie’s boss gets fired. Mattel CEO Bryan Stockton has been ousted, after his company’s iconic Barbie doll has fallen out of favor with young girls who prefer to play with toys from the movie Frozen and more inventive sets from companies like GoldiBlox. Fortune
• Serious Super Bowl. This year, the NFL will sponsor an ad during the Super Bowl to raise domestic violence awareness. “This is us trying to do the right thing,” said NFL CMO Dawn Hudson. “If my motivation was to help the brand, then I would have slapped the NFL logo on it.” WSJ
• Williams gets revenge. After losing last year in the second round of the French Open to Garbiñe Muguruza, Serena Williams bested the 21-year-old on Monday to advance to the quarterfinals of the Australian Open. “I think for once, I didn’t start out slow,” she said. NYTimes
• A princess we can look up to. Emma Watson, a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador and the face of the HeForShe Campaign, will play Belle in Disney’s new live-action Beauty and the Beast. “My six year-old self is on the ceiling – heart bursting. Time to start some singing lessons,” she wrote in a Facebook post. Time
• The end of the petticoat. In 1888, a bad blizzard hit New York City and women traveling to work could barely get on the subway because they were so laden down by their large petticoats. “Few of the women who work for their living could get to their work places. Never, perhaps, in the history of petticoats was the imbecility of their designer better illustrated,” a reporter for The New York Sun wrote at the time. Soon after the storm, a slimmer style was introduced into department stores. Slate
Charging ahead on diversity
Enterprise tech could learn a lot about gender diversity from American Express. Last month, Intel announced a $300 million initiative to diversify its workforce while Microsoft, Google, and other tech giants have acknowledged a need to support more female talent.
Yet for American Express , the issue is old hat. The financial services giant started its first women’s inclusion group 22 years ago, and groups for underrepresented minorities soon followed. The world’s largest card issuer by purchase volume, American Express now boasts 39% women in vice-president positions and above. Women made up 66% of corporate executive hires in 2014, a statistic that chief diversity officer Valerie Grillo attributes to the many years American Express has been thinking about the issue.
In fact, in 2008, just when most corporations were feeling the brunt of the financial crisis, American Express pushed its diversity efforts into full throttle. Why? For AmEx execs, better business performance and retaining top female talent have always been part of the same discussion.
“Nobody said we have to do this. It’s just smart business,” says Susan Sobbott, president of global corporate payments. The result is a company that sets an example for other industries that are trying to catch up.
To read my full story in the latest issue of Fortune Magazine, click here.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
• Talking while female. For members of the transgender community who identify as women, achieving a feminine-sounding voice can be extremely difficult. A new industry of vocal coaches is cropping up that can teach anyone how to sound like a woman by focusing on vowel sounds and speaking more slowly. “Watch the last word. If you don’t do it nice and slow, you won’t have time to pull all the hills and valleys in it. Right?,” a coach told a client recently. The Atlantic
• No Hope for Solo? Olympic soccer player Hope Solo could miss the World Cup, after being suspended from play for allegedly arguing with a police officer after her boyfriend was pulled over for a DUI. WSJ
• You can’t name your daughter Nutella. A court in France ruled that Nutella is “the trade name of a spread.” The baby in question who was given the name Nutella at birth now goes by Hazelnut. Just kidding — the judge renamed the girl Ella after her parents refused to show up to court. Time
ON MY RADAR
100% of women of color in STEM experience bias Fortune
Who gets a raise? NYTimes
10 actionable ways to increase diversity in tech Fast Company
The dirtiest woman in show business? The Daily Beast
24 questions for Eventbrite co-founder Julia Hartz Bizwomen
I have a personality defect where I sort of refuse to see myself as an underdog... It's because of my parents. They raised me with the entitlement of a tall, blond, white man.Mindy Kaling of <em>The Mindy Project</em> on where her confidence comes from.