Welcome to Network 2000. We are a non-profit 501(c) (3) membership organization founded in 1993 with the mission to promote the advancement of women in professional and executive positions. Today we have 85 members who are leaders in our business community, including judges, bank presidents, corporate COOs and CFOs, hospital CEOs, law firm partners, two publishing executives, as well as many successful entrepreneurs. The Daily Record newspaper’s annual Top 100 Women awards program has included Network 2000 members every year since its inception.
Key to achieving our mission, “Championing Women Leaders”, are our corporate sponsors. Their generosity not only provides financial support, but also positions them on the leading edge of the nationwide discussion of diversity in corporate board rooms and executive suites. We encourage like-mind businesses to join them.
Through Network 2000, our members combine their energies in advocating the advancement of women to corporate boards of directors and executive suites. In cooperation with the Greater Baltimore Committee, we present “Building the Pipeline to the C-Suite & the Boardroom.” Open to the public, this annual event provides a forum for education and open discussion about the opportunities and challenges that await women who serve or wish to serve on corporate boards. In addition, we publish an annual Census Report to communicate our findings and analysis of the status of women on corporate boards in Maryland. It is the only report of its kind in the state.
In the USA, the percentage of women directors in publicly held companies has hovered between 15 and 16 percent for close to ten years. In 2012, the percentage in Maryland rose above 10% for the first time. Findings such as these emphasize the continuing importance of Network 2000’s mission and reaffirm our determination to work with other business leaders and institutions to increase the number of women in corporate leadership and board rooms.
While the number of women advancing to the c-suite and board rooms remains depressed, Network 2000 believes it is important to recognize businesses that do promote women in leadership positions. Inaugurated in 1995 by Network 2000 and The Daily Record, the Business 2000 Award acknowledges a Maryland company that demonstrates a strong commitment to developing and promoting women leaders across its organization. After interviews with a number of firms, we named Medifast, a nationally prominent business with outstanding women’s programs, as the 2013 Business 2000 Award recipient.
Mentoring has been a key component in Network 2000’s outreach since the beginning. Through our Effective Impact Mentoring Program we prepare mid-career women to reach their full business potential. To date, over 100 talented professional women [mentees] have participated in our program.
Network 2000’s Women of Excellence Luncheon draws over 1,000 business leaders each year to hear the insight and perspective of outstanding women – from the late Lady Margaret Thatcher to Arianna Huffington. For 2013, we welcomed award-winning actress and advocate for women in media, Geena Davis.
Network 2000 members serve on many non-profit boards and support organizations whose activities align with our mission. Beginning with the 2004 establishment of a fund at the Central Scholarship Bureau for interest-free loans to deserving young women, we have made grants to a range of organizations including Marian House, My Sister’s Circle and the Women’s Industrial Exchange.
At the heart of Network 2000 lie shared commitment and respect. We reinforce these values at our monthly membership meetings where we exchange ideas, enjoy each other’s company and affirm our determination to assure women’s leadership.
As president of Network 2000, I am very honored and proud to serve this wonderful organization of dynamic women leaders.
Katherine Bays Armstrong
Note: Membership in Network 2000 is by invitation. To find out more, please contact our membership committee: Contact Us.