The chief executive of Lloyd’s of London, Inga Beale, has topped an annual power list of the most influential LGBT leaders in the UK – the first time a female and openly bisexual leader has appeared at the summit.
The ‘Top 100’, a power list of LGBT Executives compiled by LGBT professional network OUTstanding in conjunction with The Financial Times, also features Alan Joyce (CEO, Qantas) and António Simões (CEO, HSBC) at numbers two and three respectively.
Martine Rothblatt, (CEO, United Therapeutics) is the list’s highest-ranking transgender executive, appearing at number four.
Other executives appearing on the list include Burberry chief executive Christopher Bailey (who topped the 2014 Top 100 list) and Claudia Brind-Woody (vice-president and managing director, IBM).
The CEO of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg, tops a separate top 30 list of ‘Ally Executives’ (senior executives who champion LGBT diversity in the workplace), trailed by Sir Richard Branson and Andrew Liveriss (CEO, Dow Chemical Company).
A list of ‘Top LGBT Future Leaders’ was also compiled, topped by Aritha Wickramasinghe, an associate at law firm K&L Gates LLP.
“It is a delight and honour to be listed in OUTstanding’s Top 100, but the praise should go to the whole London insurance sector,” said Beale. “I am proud of the commitment of Lloyd’s and the London insurance market to celebrate diversity and ensure we are an attractive, globally relevant and inclusive sector. Inclusion is the foundation of innovation, and having an open, accepting and diverse workforce will enable us to succeed in a changing and challenging world.”
“Compared to 2013, we see far more people wanting to be associated with lists,” noted OUTstanding founder and CEO Suki Sandhu. “This is fantastic news as I hope it shows people are both more comfortable about being their true selves at work, and also that they see the value of ‘going public’ in terms of inspiring the next generation of leaders.”
The OUTstanding lists aim to highlight positive lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender role models in business. Last year, The Financial Times reported that workers who are in the closet are 70 per cent more likely to leave the company within the first three years. Meanwhile, a Human Rights Campaign study found that 62 per cent of Generation Y LGBT graduates who were out at university went back into the closet when they started their first job.
The executives appearing on the Top 100 list were nominated by peers and colleagues. Former BP chief executive Lord Browne and Getty Images boss Dawn Airey were both on the judging panel.