OPPORTUNITY EXISTS TO EMPOWER MORE WOMEN TO LEAD AND SUCCEED ECONOMICALLY
KANSAS CITY, MO -- Wendy Doyle, President and CEO of Women's Foundation, issued the following statement in response to Missouri State Auditor Nicole Galloway's audit report released Monday that stated that approximately 1,130 board positions (70%) were waiting to be filled by the governor, either due to a vacancy or because of an expired term, at the end of the previous administration. According to the Auditor, there are about 220 boards with 1,600 governor-appointed positions in Missouri.
The State Auditor report covered the end of the last Governor's term through the transition to the new Governor. In addition to reporting on the vacancies, it stated that in some cases "boards continue to exist after years of inactivity due to a perceived lack of interest or need."
For the past several years, Women's Foundation has worked with elected officials in Missouri and Kansas to increase the number of women on public boards and commissions through its Appointments Project. Women’s Foundation's Appointments Project serves as a talent bank, advisor, and advocate for women seeking opportunities to lead and works to attract diverse applicants for appointed positions on boards and commissions. Women’s Foundation guides women through the process of applying for these positions.
More than 40 women have been appointed to boards and commissions in Missouri and Kansas as a result of the Appointments Project since its launch in the spring of 2014. The Appointments Project is currently active in helping recruit and train more women to serve on boards and commissions for the States of Missouri and Kansas, St. Louis County, and the Cities of St. Louis, Springfield, and Kansas City, MO, and Topeka and Olathe, KS and is continuing to expand.
In addition, Women's Foundation has been working with researchers and public policy makers on the issue of occupational licensing. In research conducted in partnership with the University of Missouri Truman School of Public Policy, Women’s Foundation identified a number of potential policy solutions for reforming occupational licensing including requiring a cost-benefit analysis before any new licensing requirement is created and periodic reviews to determine if they are still necessary. Policy changes could be made by proposed legislation and changes in state law, as well as administrative rule changes and board policies.
The report also suggested providing mentoring to women entrepreneurs and placing more women on Missouri’s boards and commissions with support from programs like Women’s Foundation’s Appointments Project.
Women’s Foundation promotes equity and opportunity for women of all ages, using research, philanthropy and policy solutions to make meaningful change. More information about the organization can be found at www.Womens-Foundation.org.