On the International Women’s Day (March 08th), IRB Brasil RE was certified by Women on Board (WOB), an association bringing together a group of female executives, counselors, lawyers and business women acting for promoting women to decision-making positions. The company received a special seal for having two women on its Board of Directors: the former justice and first woman to be the president of the Federal Supreme Court, Ellen Gracie Northfleet, and the former CEO of S&P Global Ratings in Brazil and Argentina, Regina Helena Jorge Nunes.
Created in 2019 supported by UN Women, WOB certified 27 publicly traded and closed companies, and organizations in Brazil. The entire certification process is free and the analysis can be requested by the companies. Currently, considering Ibovespa’s theoretical portfolio, the main indicator of the Brazilian stock market, only 19 of the 78 large-sized companies are eligible to apply for the certification, according to a survey by Grupo Estado.
Ellen Gracie and Regina Nunes have been independent directors at the reinsurer since last year. On June 12th, 2020, former justice Ellen Gracie, who also works in other boards of directors and as a conciliatory judge at the Federal Supreme Court Mediation and Conciliation Center, was elected to the company’s board, where she also coordinates the Ethics, Environment, Social Responsibility and Corporate Governance Committee (ESG).
“In its renewal phase, IRB has incorporated two female presences to its board, with different education and professional experience. I believe that the multiplicity of points of view certainly contributes to a better understanding and solution to the challenges of the corporate world”, says the former justice, first woman linked to the Arbitration Chamber.
With a 33-year career, Regina Nunes was elected on May 11th, 2020 and coordinates the Risks and Solvency Committee. For her, “the female presence brings to the leadership diversity of experiences and the ability to understand and comprehend the real difficulty is in dealing with certain themes.”
The initiative for IRB to apply for the certification came from the Board of Directors itself, which delegated the process to the independent director Henrique Luz, president of IBGC and coordinator of the Audit Committee: “Diversity is, in itself, an ethical issue. Dealing empathetically with all dimensions of diversity is an ethical imperative. I, as a director, feel honored by this initiative. We are among the best-in-class boards in Brazil in terms of gender diversity.”
In addition to IRB, the Brazilian Association of Banks (ABBC), Arezzo&Co, Banco BMG, Banco Fibra, B3, Burguer King, Cetesb, Cia de Talentos, Colégio Santa Cruz, Copel, FBN Brazil, Furnas, Great Place Work, Grupo Baumgart, Grupo Fleury, IBGC, Natura, PagSeguro, Popeyes, Pernambucanas, Lojas Renner, Santander, Ser +, SulAmerica, Suzano and WWF received the WOB seal. If the number of female directors is reduced, the companies need to restore the board within six months or they lose the certification.