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Houston Board Index 2016

The Spencer Stuart 2016 Houston Board Index examines trends in board composition, practices and compensation among Houston’s leading companies. The 83 companies included in the index were featured in the Houston Chronicle’s “List of Top 100 Companies,” have their headquarters in the Houston area, and are publicly traded on one of the major stock exchanges (NYSE or NASDAQ).

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Among the highlights of this year’s Houston Board Index:

  • Houston companies added seven new female independent directors in the 2016 proxy year, but still trail the S&P 500 in the percentage of female directors (15% vs. 21%). Seventy-seven percent of Houston companies have at least one female director, and 18% have two or more.
  • Thirty-six of the 83 companies in the index added new independent directors in 2016, for a total of 50 new independent directors. This compares to 65 in 2015.
  • Sixty-six percent of Houston boards have a mandatory retirement age, compared with 73% of the S&P 500.
  • Sixty percent of Houston companies separate the chairman and chief executive officer roles, compared with 48% of S&P 500 boards.
  • The average cash retainer for Houston board directors decreased slightly to $76,884 in 2016.
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