Gaingels Board Diversity Program

Gaingels Board Diversity Program

Helping our portfolio companies achieve greater diversity on the Boards of Directors is one of the most impactful ways we can help ensure their success, while fulfilling our mission. For this reason, Gaingels has established a comprehensive program to assist our portfolio companies with the selection, vetting, interview and recruitment of independent board members from a variety of underrepresented minorities and backgrounds, at no additional cost to our portfolio companies, and in complement to their independent recruitment processes. This program has two independent and complementary objectives: increase the chance that the private sector select and form boards of directors that better reflect their diversity and inclusion objectives, and maximize the opportunity for a variety of highly qualified candidate to be evaluated and considered for impactful leadership positions within high growth startups.

The Importance of Board Diversity

Boards still do not represent the companies or communities they serve. Women represent just 26% of all board seats of S&P 500 companies. And virtually no data exists about women, Black Latinx, Asian and LGBT+ representation at the board level in early stage and pre-IPO companies. Yet, growing evidence points to companies with greater diversity achieving greater investor confidence and higher valuations. 2018 McKinsey report “Delivering through Diversity”, indicated that companies in the top quartile for ethnic diversity were 43 percent more likely to see above-average profitability.

The Gaingels Board Diversity Program Driving Change through business

In the two years, Gaingels has assisted more than 100 of our portfolio companies in defining business and diversity goals for their boards and finding qualified Board and Adviser candidates, through the Corporate Board Diversity Program. The program works with more than two dozen organizations (and growing!) that maintain large databases of experienced and vetted board-ready candidates from rising VP level through CEO. Candidates include women, LGBTQIA+, Black, Latinx, Asian, and Pacific Islander candidates from a broad range of industries across unicorn startups to Fortune 500 companies. The Board Diversity Program is a free service to the portfolio companies of Gaingels.

We encourage you to meet with Brandon Parkes, our director of Board Diversity, to learn how we might be able to help you and your board build a more inclusive leadership structure. If you’re interested in learning more or pursuing the help of our Board Diversity program, please contact Brandon Parkes.

Our Partners


Since April 2021 Gaingels has:

Helped 180+ companies define their diversity and board needs

Placed 20 board members across 19 companies

Has introduced 556 diverse candidates to 100+ companies