CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–In remarks on October 15 to the 4th Annual Women in Listed
Derivatives (WILD) Symposium In Chicago, OCC
Executive Chairman Craig
Donohue applauded the work of WILD to empower women and create more
visibility and opportunity, but said much more needs to be done.
Speaking to the attendees meeting at the Federal Reserve Bank of
Chicago, Donohue said,” I don’t know that I have the roadmap for how we
accelerate and achieve true gender and pay equality in the workplace,
but I do know that there are several key ingredients for me. First, we
must make an affirmative commitment to ensure that boards and management
teams have highly qualified women executives. Second, companies must be
willing to provide flexible work arrangements that provide women
executives with a greater ability to balance and meet competing demands.
Third, we must find ways to facilitate re-entry of women who have opted
to spend more time with their children and subsequently wish to return
to their careers. “
Donohue’s prepared remarks to the WILD Symposium follow below.
WILD is a group of emerging and established women from derivatives
exchanges, clearing firms, investment banks, brokerage firms,
proprietary trading houses, technology firms, industry organizations,
and the media to promote networking through mentoring programs as well
as social and educational events http://www.womeninlistedderivatives.org.
Their mission is to highlight industry role models, encourage advancing
careers, and collectively underscore the prominence of women in
OCC is the world’s largest equity derivatives clearing organization and
the foundation for secure markets. Founded in 1973, OCC operates under
the jurisdiction of both the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
(SEC) as a Registered Clearing Agency and the U.S. Commodity Futures
Trading Commission (CFTC) as a Derivatives Clearing Organization. OCC
now provides central counterparty (CCP) clearing and settlement services
to 16 exchanges and trading platforms for options, financial futures,
security futures and securities lending transactions. More information
about OCC is available at www.theocc.com.
REMARKS BY CRAIG DONOHUE TO 4TH ANNUAL WILD
SYMPOSIUM – October 15, 2015
Good afternoon everybody – and thank you for inviting me to be with you
I am honored to be here and pleased to see some of my OCC colleagues
taking leadership roles at WILD, including:
- Carole Bovard
- Bethany Riesenberg
- Kirsten Wells and
- Mary Savoie
I’m also glad to see former colleagues from CME and the industry.
You are all truly leaders in our industry – and the work that you are
doing to empower women and create more visibility and opportunity is
tremendous. Thank you for being great role models for women who aspire
to become the next generation of leaders in our industry. I am fortunate
to have three strong women around me: my wife Elsa who was a trader and
money manager, my oldest daughter Caity who is a young lawyer here in
Chicago and Kelsey who is graduating from Loyola Academy this spring.
Many of you who know me know that I am an optimist by nature. When I
reflect on the equality challenges that Elsa and many of you have faced,
I see the glass as half full. I see how much progress we have made in
the last several decades on civil rights, gender equality and more
recently, the beginning of broader acceptance of the notion of equality
for the LGBT community, including gay marriage.
When I talk with Caity and Kelsey about what is possible for them, I see
how much more needs to be done and both my responsibility and my
opportunity to further advance gender and pay equality in the workplace.
According to the 2014 Catalyst Census:
Only 1.4% of the CEOs in the S&P 500 finance and industry sector were
women compared to 5% in the overall S&P 500, and
Only 19.8% held board seats in the financial sector versus 20.7% of
the overall S&P index of companies.
A leader is only as successful as the people he or she surrounds
themselves with. I am a strong proponent of promoting and hiring women
into senior roles and into opportunities across the organization. During
my decade of leadership at CME Group we were able to promote many women
into senior leadership roles on our Management Team, including:
- Kim Taylor as President of CME Clearing
- Julie Holzrichter as Head of Global Operations
- Kathleen Cronin as General Counsel and
- Hilda Harris-Piell as Chief Human Resources Officer
In my two years as Chairman of The Options Clearing Corporation, we have
added two more women board members and our new Chief Financial Officer
and Chief Human Resources Officer are women.
I don’t know that I have the roadmap for how we accelerate and achieve
true gender and pay equality in the workplace but I do know that there
are several key ingredients for me:
First, we must make an affirmative commitment to ensure that boards and
management teams have highly qualified women executives. For too many
companies, this is not yet an imperative and that has to change.
Christine Lagarde, Managing Director of the IMF, once said, “Women’s
empowerment is not just a fundamental moral cause, it also is an
absolute economic no-brainer.” She could not be more right. Smart
companies should see gender and pay equality as not only the right thing
to do but also the smart thing to do.
Second, companies must be willing to provide flexible work arrangements
that provide women executives with a greater ability to balance and meet
competing demands. This may mean creative solutions that allow for
part-time leadership roles, job-sharing or simply work anywhere policies
that help keep talented women in the workplace. We need to stop the
exodus of smart, talented and ambitious women from the workplace due to
rigid and archaic organizational models and policies.
Third, and I’m seeing this a lot now in my age group as my generation
become empty nesters: we must find ways to facilitate re-entry of women
who have opted to spend more time with their children and subsequently
wish to return to their careers. We must work harder at providing these
opportunities, both so we can take advantage of the talent and
experience that many women accumulate over the course of their careers
but also so we can send the message that you can leave and come back.
Too many women leave the workplace knowing that it may effectively be
the end of their career versus just one chapter of many.
It is very important for companies like OCC to embed diversity in their
culture and throughout their operations. I want OCC to be looked upon as
an inclusive firm, integrating and aligning diversity and inclusion into
our business strategy as opposed to just checking a box.
OCC is undergoing significant positive change as we adapt to our new
responsibilities as a systemically important financial institution.
While we have already experienced significant growth, we currently have
approximately 95 open positions. I strongly encourage all of you to take
a look at OCC to determine if there might be great opportunities for
you. We will benefit from attracting talented leaders like you.
In closing, I applaud the work of WILD and encourage you to continue
your good work – not only for those of you in this room and for whom you
will be working with at your firms, but for that next generation of
women like Caity and Kelsey. The work you are doing today will
ultimately inspire them to become great.
Thank you again for allowing me to be with you today, and I wish you all