Two out of every five board seats filled at Fortune 500 companies in 2018 went to women, the global executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles International Incorporated said in its Board Monitor 2019 report.

“Of the 462 seats filled last year, 183—almost 40%—went to women, the highest percentage of female appointees in the 10-year history of Board Monitor, and a doubling of the percentage over the past decade,” the report states.

Nevertheless, overall progress has been slow-going. The total share of seats held by women was still only 22.5%, a mere increase of 0.3% from the prior year. Furthermore, progress in building racial and ethnic diversity on boards has continued to lag.

The report notes that women will likely not reach parity with men in board appointments until 2023, with attainment of a representative level in racial and ethnic diversity in appointments taking even longer.

“As these trends suggest, the story of increasing diversity on boards is far from simple and far from over. Based on 10 years’ worth of data and our extensive experience working with boards around the world, we see real but still disappointing progress,” the report states.

As issues of gender equality continue to grow in the public consciousness, NJBIA started the Women Business Leaders Network to provide women with the skills and resources necessary to help women make headway into corporate leadership. The goal is to reach parity between men and women on corporate boards and in top executive positions.

Join NJBIA on Sept. 20 for the 5th Annual NJBIA Women Business Leaders Forum.