The History

Sharing a passion for increasing the number of women on boards, in 2010, we created a grassroots campaign, called 2020 Women on Boards, to reach 20%, women directors on corporate boards of the Russell 3000 Index by 2020.

To raise awareness of the business imperative, we launched eye-opening research to track the progress of women directors and engaged with organizations and corporations to educate, collaborate, and advocate for more women on corporate boards.

As the campaign grew, we empowered volunteers to champion our efforts through a series of public events in key cities to engage women at all stages of their careers and male allies committed to advancing women.

In 2019, we were happy to announce that the campaign met its goal to reach 20% women directors on corporate boards of the Russell 3000 Index, and in 2020, our 10th anniversary, women held an historic 22.6% of corporate board seats. 

While we celebrated this milestone, we aren’t done yet!

In 2021, we launched 50/50 women on boards – a bold forward movement towards accelerating gender balance and diversity on corporate boards

We want to thank all our campaign advocates, alliances, chairs, donors, corporate sponsors, board of directors, and the national office for their support, energy, dedication and unstoppable commitment to accelerating women directors on corporate boards!

Meet the Women and Men Behind the Campaign!

 

Board of Directors

Stephanie Sonnabend, Co-Founder, Chair of the Board 
Stephanie is passionate about making the world a better place. Former CEO and President of Sonesta International Hotels Corporation, Stephanie led a publicly traded global hospitality company, built a strong corporate culture applauded by the industry and spearheaded significant growth, internationally and in the U.S. She currently is an advisor to SAFR, a startup ridesharing company focused on empowering women drivers and passengers. Previous board experience includes Sonesta Hotels, Century Bank and SVN. Today, she is a director, speaker, executive coach, and consultant, with a special focus on family businesses, hospitality, and transitions and succession planning for boards, CEOs, senior executives and organizations. Stephanie resides in Sarasota, FL, and Portsmouth, NH.

 

Malli Gero, Co-Founder, Vice Chair of the Board and Senior Advisor  
Malli served as President of 2020 Women on Boards from 2010 through 2017. Before launching 2020 Women on Boards, Malli had an extensive career in marketing communications and public relations. She was principal of Gero Communications, a boutique PR firm founded in 1985, specializing in B2B, non-profit and hospitality sectors. She previously worked for large public relations agencies in New York and Boston.  Malli is an active community volunteer, serving on the Mayor’s Commission on Women (Boston) and on the boards of More Than Words, the Coolidge Corner Theatre Foundation and the Brookline Educational Foundation. She resides in Boston, MA and Tenants Harbor, ME.

 


Betsy Berkhemer-Credaire, Chief Executive Officer

Betsy is the CEO of 50/50 Women on Boards, and the author of two books, The Board Game – How Smart Women Become Corporate Directors, and Winning the Board Game—How Women Directors Make The Difference. Before joining 2020WOB, Betsy led the efforts of the National Association of Women Business Owners-California (NAWBO-CA) to secure passage of SB826, the first law in the U.S. requiring public companies headquartered in California to add more women board members before year-end 2021. As CEO, she continues to support those efforts and track results.  

She also serves as the co-chair of Los Angeles and is the face of 50/50 Women on Boards. Previously she was the founding chair of the Los Angeles/Orange County chapter of WomenCorporateDirectors (WCD), a global nonprofit network of current women directors, and is a member of International Women’s Forum.

Betsy is also the CEO and co-owner of Berkhemer Clayton Inc., a retained executive search firm, founded in 1994. She and her business partner Fred Clayton pioneered diversity searches for senior management and corporate boards of brand-name corporations, universities and large nonprofits.

Previously she built and sold one of the largest independent public relations firms in Southern California, and for 25 years she served on the board of Southern California Leadership Network (SCLN) for 25 years, and the advisory boards of Southern California Edison (SCE) and UCLA Medical Center. 

Tracey Doi
Tracey Doi is chief financial officer of Toyota Motor Sales, USA, Inc., and Toyota Motor Engineering and Manufacturing, North America, as well as group vice president of accounting and finance of Toyota Motor North America, Inc. Tracey leads a team responsible for accounting, finance, tax, treasury, vehicle cost and shared services supporting Toyota’s regional operations — encompassing sales, manufacturing, design and engineering for the Toyota and Lexus brands in North America.

Tracey is an executive member of the Management, Audit, Risk and Benefit committees responsible for setting strategy, midterm business plans and guiding Toyota’s sustainable growth. She serves as an officer and director for several subsidiaries.

Tracey joined Toyota in 2000 as vice president, corporate controller and was elevated to CFO in 2003, and later added responsibility for indirect procurement, real estate and administrative services. Tracey earned her bachelor’s degree in business economics at UCLA and her CPA while in public accounting.

Tracey serves on the board of directors and audit committee of City National Bank, the board of directors of the National Asian / Pacific Islander American Chamber of Commerce & Entrepreneurship, the U.S. – Japan Council and the Japanese American National Museum. Tracey recently completed two terms on the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco Economic Advisory Council.

Tracey has been recognized three times by Automotive News as one of its top 100 Leading Women in the North American Auto Industry.

 

Robin Ferracone
Robin is founder and Chief Executive Officer of Farient Advisors,a compensation and performance advisory firm that  provides compensation and performance advisory services to public and private companies. Robin currently serves on the boards of Trupanion, a public company, Oaktree Capital Funds, and Enlight, a software company. Previously, Robin was President of the Human Capital business of Mercer, Chairman of the U.S. West Region for Mercer’s parent company, Marsh & McLennan Companies, and President and Chairman of SCA Consulting, a firm she co-founded in 1985 and sold to Mercer in 2001.

She is the author of the book entitled, “Fair Pay Fair Play: Aligning Executive Performance and Pay.”, She is a regular contributor to Forbes.com and Directorship Magazine, and frequent presenter for the Council of Institutional Investors, Society for Corporate Secretaries and Governance Professionals, the National Association of Corporate Directors (NACD), and The Conference Board.

For the past seven years, Robin has been named to the NACD Directorship 100, the prestigious list of the most influential people in corporate governance and the boardroom. In 2014, Robin was selected as one of EY’s Entrepreneurial Winning Women, a competition that annually recognizes female entrepreneurs.

She received her MBA degree from the Harvard Business School, where she was a Baker Scholar and a B.A. summa cum laude in Management Science and Economics from Duke University, where she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa.

 

Renee Fraser, Ph.D. 
Renee Fraser, Ph.D. is the founder and CEO of Fraser Communications, the largest female owned and led integrated advertising agency in Southern California. Renee serves as the Chair of the Boards for Wise and Healthy Aging, as well as, Girls Inc. She was previously on the boards for National Volunteers of America, United Way of Greater LA County, Harvard University Women’s Leadership board at The Kennedy School, NAWBO-LA Leadership Board and Women Presidents Organization.

Renee was honored as one of the “50 Most Influential Women” by Los Angeles Magazine for her many contributions in civic leadership (United Way board, VOA National board and Co-Chair of Business Task Force to end homelessness in L.A./Home for Good). Renee encouraged entrepreneurship through her radio show “Unfinished Business”, for five years. She’s a featured columnist on Business.com and has been featured on Forbes, the Huffington Post, and many others. She is also the creator and host of The Deciders on KABC 790AM in Los Angeles every Saturday at 5:30 PM PT.

Since 2012, she has co-chaired the 2020WOB Los Angeles/Orange County events for the National Conversation on Board Diversity. On the 2020WOB board, she chairs the strategic branding committee.

Renee received her BA, MA and Ph.D. from University of Southern California. She lives in Santa Monica, CA.

 

Sharon D. Garrett, Ph.D
Sharon is a management consultant, providing advisory services, primarily to private equity companies, regarding acquisitions, divestitures and operational process improvements. Sharon serves as a director on several boards:  Ross Stores Inc. since 2000 and served as Lead Independent Director; Catalytic Capital Investment Corp.; and Corio, Inc.,and previously as director at TriZetto Corporation; SimplyDone Business Solutions; Scott’s Liquid Gold, Inc.  She was Senior Vice President of Reimbursement Services at American Medical Response, Inc.; president of CSG Systems, Inc., and Executive Vice President of Pacificare Health Systems, Inc. Sharon served as Chief Executive Officer of S.D. Garrett Enterprises, a management turnaround company; Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer of The Walt Disney Company; and Chief Executive Officer of Zyan Communications. She also served as Chief Operating Officer – U.S. Operations for Porton International Plc.

Sharon previously served as Deputy Director of UCLA Medical Center.  She holds a Doctorate and a Master’s Degree in Public Health in Statistics and Planning, as well as a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, all from UCLA. She also serves in an advisory capacity for the UCLA Anderson Graduate School of Management, Global Access

 

Julie Hill 
Julie Hill is a member of the board of directors of Anthem; The Lord Abbett Family of Funds; and was previously on the board of Lend Lease, based in Sydney, Australia.  Julie founded Hillsdale Development, a home building and land development company based in Newport Beach, CA, and The Hill Company, which has a portfolio of interests, after being chief executive officer of Costain Homes-US, a division of the Costain Group based in London, England. She was previously a senior executive with Mobil Land Development Corporation in Atlanta, GA, a division of Mobil Oil.

Julie was a long-time Chair of the board of Human Options, a shelter for abused women and children, and serves on the board of directors of the Orange County Community Foundation. She is a member of the International Women’s Forum and Los Angeles Trusteeship, and prior member of the Women’s Leadership Board of the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard. Julie is the 2018 chair of the Board of Trustees of the University of California-Irvine (UCI) Foundation, and past chair of the UCI Chief Executive Roundtable; the Paul Merage School of Business Directors’ Board.

She earned her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from UCLA, and a master’s degree in marketing from the University of Georgia. She lives with her family in Newport Coast, CA and London, England.

 

John Iino 
At the law firm of Reed Smith, John serves as Global Chair, Diversity & Inclusion, a member of the firm’s Global Leadership Team and an ex-officio member of the Talent Committee of the Reed Smith Executive Committee. John leads the Japan Business Team, responsible for coordinating the firm’s work for clients doing business in Japan and for Japanese clients doing business outside of Japan. He has substantial experience representing U.S., Asian, Canadian and multinational companies in corporate, financial and commercial transactions. John previously served as Global Chair of the firm’s Business & Finance Department, Chair of the U.S. Corporate & Securities Group and Managing Partner of the Los Angeles office. The first Asian American to serve on Reed Smith’s Executive Committee and Senior Management Team, John also served as the Chair of Reed Smith’s Asian American Affinity Group. He recently was named among the top 500 ”Most Influential People in LA” by the Los Angeles Business Journal, and ”One of the Nation’s Most Influential Minority Attorneys’.’ John received the ”Lifetime Achievement Award” at the Los Angeles Business Journal’s Asian Business Awards, and the Leadership Award from the USC Asian Pacific Alumni Association, and the President’s Award from the USC Alumni Association. John is a frequent speaker and panelist on matters involving diversity and inclusion, law firm management, corporate law and cross-border transactions.

 

50/50 Women on Boards Global Team


Betsy Berkhemer-Credaire, Chief Executive Officer

Betsy is the CEO of 50/50 Women on Boards, and the author of two books, The Board Game – How Smart Women Become Corporate Directors, and Winning the Board Game—How Women Directors Make The Difference. Before joining 2020WOB, Betsy led the efforts of the National Association of Women Business Owners-California (NAWBO-CA) to secure passage of SB826, the first law in the U.S. requiring public companies headquartered in California to add more women board members before year-end 2021. As CEO, she continues to support those efforts and track results.  

She also serves as the co-chair of Los Angeles and is the face of 50/50 Women on Boards. Previously she was the founding chair of the Los Angeles/Orange County chapter of WomenCorporateDirectors (WCD), a global nonprofit network of current women directors, and is a member of International Women’s Forum.

Betsy is also the CEO and co-owner of Berkhemer Clayton Inc., a retained executive search firm, founded in 1994. She and her business partner Fred Clayton pioneered diversity searches for senior management and corporate boards of brand-name corporations, universities and large nonprofits.

Previously she built and sold one of the largest independent public relations firms in Southern California, and for 25 years she served on the board of Southern California Leadership Network (SCLN) for 25 years, and the advisory boards of Southern California Edison (SCE) and UCLA Medical Center. 

 

Heather Spilsbury, COO/CMO
Heather Spilsbury is the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Marketing Officer for 50/50 Women on Boards, overseeing and executing its global brand efforts and its operational structure to foster the campaign’s growth. As an accomplished creative marketing strategist and business development executive, Heather educates stakeholders on industry patterns to create content-rich multichannel campaigns tailored to convert audiences into advocates, increase profit margins, raise capital, and drive acquisitions.

Previously, as the VP of Marketing and strategy at a creative agency in LA, she grew the agency from $3MM to $26MM in less than three years and founded the agency’s marketing division. Heather also serves on the board of HPRLA and is a senior consultant at Brilliant.

She brings more than 15 years of experience in Public Relations, Marketing, and e-commerce working for Edelman, Golin, Havas, and The Recording Academy across CPG, OEM, Energy, Health, Tech, Lifestyle, and Beauty industries. Passionate about contributing to under-resourced communities, she began volunteering as a math tutor in minority public schools and most recently through organizations like Everytable and The Fulfillment Fund.

Heather graduated from Seattle University with a degree in Business Management and Economics and a minor in Fine Arts. Heather is a continual learner, Google/Bing Certified in Display, Search, Video, and Analytics, and accredited by UCLA Extension for Crisis Communication, Data Analytics, and Predictive Modeling.

 

Breanna Bakke, Senior Director of Finance & Research
Since 2012, Breanna Bakke has served the campaign’s fifjnancial analysis and research. Relocating from Boston to Los Angeles to continue her work with the campaign, she is an advocate for gender equality and brings extensive knowledge of women’s leadership issues to the organization. In Boston, she was elected Co-President of the Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus Young Professional Leadership Board in 2015 and served on the 2020 Women on Boards/Boston Campaign Committee.  

Previously, Breanna was an assistant project director with YPO–Young Presidents’ Organization– where she provided logistical support for national and international business events, and interned at Morgan Stanley and the Massachusetts Women’s Political Caucus, where she built a statewide database tracking political election campaigns. 

Breanna graduated from Bentley University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Economics and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Global Perspectives. 

 

Natalia McCullough, Communications Consultant
A graduate of Bentley University in Boston, Natalia earned her bachelor’s degree in marketing with a minor in Information Design, Corporate Communications and English in 2017. She was born and raised in Puerto Rico, and is dedicated to advancing women’s careers. She consults for 50/50 Women on Boards, assisting in email marketing and graphic design.