The Broadsheet: December 20th


Good morning, Broadsheet readers! Christine Lagarde loses her case, Michelle Obama sits down with Oprah, and Pinterest misses the mark on diversity hiring. Enjoy your Tuesday.


 Put a pin in it. In the summer of 2015, Pinterest won widespread praise (including from Fortune) for announcing clear-cut diversity hiring goals, including a pledge to increase hiring rates of female engineers to 30% and of underrepresented minorities to 8%.

But now, more than a year later, the company is experiencing the downside of making such an audacious move: It missed the mark—or at least part of it. While Pinterest did succeed in bringing its ranks of newly-hired engineers of color up to 9%, it whiffed on women, with a hiring rate of 22%. What's more, the company has decided to scale back its 2017 targets for female engineers, concluding that it will take "more than 12 months" to get to 30%.

It's interesting to read the media coverage of the announcement, some of which praises Pinterest for the progress it did make and for its continued focus on diversity, and some of which comes down hard on the social media player for failing to hit all of its targets.

Personally, I choose to err on the side of the former. Not only did Pinterest take a big risk in setting such a public goal, but it followed through, releasing the checkered results of its gamble. While it's disappointing to see the company scaling back its future targets, such boldness and transparency are a step in the right direction.


 FLOTUS opens up. Michelle Obama's wide-ranging interview with Oprah Winfrey aired last night. The First Lady's tone was somber as she spoke about how "challenging" the election was for her as a citizen and her realization about how divided America is. "We’re so afraid of each other," she noted. Still, Obama said she was committed to a smooth transition in the White House: “My offer to Melania [Trump] was, you really don’t know what you don’t know until you’re here, so the door is open." Washington Post

 Lagarde en gardeDespite yesterday's conviction on negligence charges dating back to her term as France’s finance minister in 2008, Christine Lagarde will keep her job as head of the IMF. Just hours after the verdict came down, the Fund's executive board reaffirmed its full confidence in Lagarde’s abilities to perform her duties. Fortune

Musical chairs. Debra Wong Yang, who became the first Asian-American woman to be named a U.S. attorney in 2002, is reportedly a top contender for the post of Securities and Exchange Commission chairman under President-elect Donald Trump. If chosen, she would be the fourth woman to head the SEC. Fortune

 Luxe leave. Kering, the French luxury-good group that owns brands such as Alexander McQueen and Gucci, has announced a new parental leave policy that will provide all employees with 14 weeks of paid maternity or adoptive leave and five days of paternity or partner leave. The global policy is far more generous than those offered by most luxury conglomerates, though critics note that the gender divide puts dads at a distinct disadvantage. New York Times

 Is there a (female) Dr. in the house? A new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine that examines the outcomes of Medicare patients finds that those treated by women had a lesser risk of both premature death and hospital readmissions within 30 days.  Fortune

MOVERS AND SHAKERS: Makeup artist Bobbi Brown says she's leaving her namesake cosmetics brand at the end of the year.


 Catz out of the bag. Can you guess which executive came in at the top of this year-end ranking of highest-paid female CEOs? Hint: She also topped our rundown of the best-compensated Most Powerful Women.   CNNMoney

 The Swedish strategy. Margot Wallstrom, Sweden’s top diplomat and an advocate for feminist foreign policy, talks Donald Trump, Russia, and refugees. New York Times

 Off the hook, pt. 2. A California judicial commission has declined to punish Aaron Persky, the judge who was widely criticized for giving ex-Stanford student Brock Turner a six-month sentence for sexually assaulting an unconscious woman. The commission acknowledged receiving “thousands of complaints and petitions” against Persky, but said it found no proof of misconduct.  The Recorder

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Breadwinning mothers are increasingly the norm  American Progress

Felicity Jones made a lot more money than her male co-stars for Rogue One  Motto

Janet Yellen tells students how important it is to get a college degree  Fortune

Martha Stewart may be on to something—the art of dating a younger guy  Vogue


What happens is that it just infuriates me to the point of action. Instead of feeling defeated, it makes me want to try even harder.
ESPN reporter Sarah Spain on dealing with sexism in sports

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