Broadening Diversity on Mutual Fund Boards: IDC Partners With Diligent Director Network  

Meghan Day

When it comes to investments, diversification matters. Mutual fund boards recognize this same principle and are taking diversity and inclusion seriously when it comes to board composition. 

The Independent Directors Council (IDC) has partnered with the Diligent Director Network to support a more diverse and inclusive fund director community. Director Network now provides the independent director community access to a broad spectrum of diverse board candidates through a dedicated portal. Additionally, mutual fund boards in search of diverse candidates now have access to a broad pool of potential candidates through the Diligent Director Network.  

“Attracting candidates with different backgrounds and points of view is vital,” says Cynthia Plouché, vice chair of the IDC’s Governing Council and independent director of Northern Trust Funds.


Diversity Can Increase a Board’s Effectiveness 

Diversity is much more than a box to check. Fund boards recognize the ever-changing business landscape and strive to keep up with a wide range of issues, from governance practices to globalization to industry innovation. They also recognize the value that comes from a variety of perspectives and experiences.  

This includes racial diversity, gender diversity, and more. Through greater diversity, boards can broaden the ways in which shareholders are served.  


Technology Can Help Boards Become More Diverse 

Technology can facilitate the journey to increase diversity on fund boards. With the right tools, boards can become more insightful and challenge one another. Enhanced visibility can also ensure that diversity is always at the forefront of board decisions about composition and succession.  


Mutual Funds Have New Ways to Connect With Diverse Candidates  

Diligent’s Director Network helps broaden the candidate pool by showcasing board candidates who seek opportunities and connections with fund boards around the country. 

Individuals can raise their profiles as board candidates or use the tool’s robust search capabilities and board opportunity posting tools to source diverse talent outside of their existing networks. The Diligent Director Network makes it easier for candidates to network themselves and for boards to look beyond their own direct connections, creating a clearer pathway to a more diverse boardroom.  

As mutual fund boards take steps toward greater diversity in the boardroom, they are contributing to robust dialogue and effective decision-making. Technology can support boards through that journey, and tools like the Diligent Director Network can help mutual fund boards tap into a pool of diverse talent with whom they may not have otherwise engaged.

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Meghan Day

Meghan Day is Vice President of ESG & Data Intelligence at Diligent. Meghan has deep expertise in the needs of directors as well as organizational efforts toward ESG and sustainability goals. She is one of the original co-hosts of The Corporate Director Podcast, which features interviews with board members and governance experts from around the world. Meghan is a member of The Society for Corporate Governance and has presented at events around the world on the power of technology to enhance board governance.