The IWMF Applauds the Promotion of Susan Zirinsky and Encourages Further Promotion of Women in News Media

The International Women’s Media Foundation (IWMF) applauds CBS for recognizing Susan Zirinsky’s accomplishments and promoting her to the well-deserved role of president at the network’s news division – the first woman to occupy this position in the company’s history. During this time of change and revaluation, we encourage other news outlets to take note of hiring and promotion practices that move women into management roles.

Executive leadership in news media still lacks gender balance. Eight years ago, the IWMF reported that, “73 percent of top management jobs in media are occupied by men,” and unfortunately, today, media and marketing industries report that only 25 percent of leadership roles are held by women, according to She Runs It.

With the number of female CEOs at-large falling 25 percent lower in 2018 than the year before, we are at a crossroads. Even though women comprise more than two thirds of journalism school graduates, in 2017, Nieman Reports found that women ran only three of the top 25 U.S. newspapers and only one of the top 25 global titles – a number that’s decreased in the past 10 years.

We are buoyed by CBS News’ decision to elevate Susan Zirinsky – one of the most distinguished journalists in network television news and a role model for all female journalists – but there is work to be done. The news media industry must do more to promote women to leadership levels. Without equal representation in these positions, we risk continued inequity in all aspects of the news industry and an even further depleted pipeline for roles like female news directors.

We encourage media outlets to lead by example, and we congratulate Susan Zirinsky and join CBS in celebrating the history being made this week.

For media inquiries please contact Charlotte Fox, the IWMF’s communications director at