NEW YORK, April 2, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- On March 22–24, Ascend Pinnacle hosted its third Asian Corporate Directors Summit at The Ritz-Carlton New York, Westchester. This year's Summit featured key topics for corporate boards and placed an additional focus and effort on the pipeline of Asian board member candidates. Ascend Pinnacle Aspiring Directors Academy, held adjacent to the Summit with EY as the lead sponsor, had an over 40% increase in the number of attendees from last year. The Academy is part of the Aspiring Directors Institute, a cohort based program providing touch points including networking events and mentoring sessions during the year.
Deloitte, founding sponsor of the Ascend Pinnacle Asian Corporate Directors Summit, along with other sponsors, Archegos Capital Management, Equilar, Southwest Airlines, and TPG, support Ascend Pinnacle's goal to increase the number of Asian Americans on public company boards.
The Summit panels covered a broad range of topics from corporate governance, diversity, emerging markets to current issues. Highlights included a Fireside chat with Farooq Kathwari, Chairman, and CEO of Ethan Allen Interiors Inc., around Corporate Social Responsibility and the role of corporate boards, with other key topics including maximizing value of the boardroom through diversity; governance in an era of disruptive risks; international corporate boards; and AI in the boardroom.
"The discussions and action items at this year's Summit focused on boards elevating diverse voices and being open to accept and integrate directors that come from different backgrounds, both professionally and socially. In 2018, women held 22.5% of board seats in Fortune 500 companies; people of color held 16.1%, so there's a lot of work that still needs to be done. But more encouragingly, over the past two years, women and minorities totaled a solid 50% of new S&P 500 directors. These numbers show that the shift towards board diversity can be achieved and through programs like Ascend Pinnacle we can help to accelerate that shift," said Anna W. Mok, Co-Founder, Ascend Pinnacle; President Elect, Ascend and Partner, Deloitte & Touche LLP.
"Board directors play a key role in advancing Corporate Social Responsibility. Throughout my career I've been focused on integrating a values-driven business with employee wellbeing as well as promoting good governance both nationally and internationally. I'm thrilled to have been part of the Ascend Pinnacle Summit and excited about the future of Asian Corporate Board members," said Farooq Kathwari, Chairman, and CEO of Ethan Allen Interiors Inc.
Ascend launched Pinnacle five years ago with a focus on Asian American directors on US public company and large private company boards. The four Ascend Pinnacle focus areas are the Asian Corporate Directors Summit, the regional roundtables, professional development and thought leadership.
Ascend is the largest, non-profit Pan-Asian membership organization for business professionals and executives in North America. Established in 2005, Ascend, a career lifecycle organization, reaches 60,000+ corporate board directors, senior executives, professionals, and MBA/undergraduate students involved in its 50+ chapters in the United States and Canada.
Visit http://www.ascendleadership.org for more information.