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PacifiCare Among the Few With High Percentage of Female Execs

December 13, 2000|Karen Alexander | Karen Alexander covers high technology for The Times. She can be reached at

PacifiCare Health Systems Inc. in Santa Ana is one of just four Fortune 500 companies at which women make up more than 40% of the company's corporate officers.

While there are still very few women filling top executive positions at the nation's largest companies, a new study shows that women have made significant progress on the corporate ladder.

At about 50 of the Fortune 500 companies, women now constitute at least a quarter of the corporate officer positions, according to Catalyst, a New York nonprofit organization that studies women in the workplace.

That's twice the number of companies that met the same criteria in 1995.

In addition to PacifiCare, three other companies in which women make up at least 40% of the corporate officers are Ikon Office Solutions, SLM Holdings and Nordstrom department stores.

But there are still 90 companies among the Fortune 500 that do not have any women in the top executive ranks.

Overall, women make up 12.5% of the top corporate ranks, or 1,622 of 12,945 corporate officers, at the 500 largest companies. Women of color make up only 1.3% of those officers, unchanged from a year ago, according to Catalyst.

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