By Matthew Goldstein
The shooting death of Trayvon Martin, an unarmed black teen in Florida, has evoked a lot of debate about race in America and the nation’s attitudes to what it means to be a minority.
There’s been a good deal written that major media organizations were slow to react to this tragic story, in part because there simply aren’t enough minority voices on staff. This point was highlighted recently in a story in The New York Times
That said, minorities also are underrepresented in the industry I spend most of my time writing about—Wall Street. And while it’s no secret that there are few minorities in the executives suites on Wall Street—there are not that many women, either—it’s worth taking look at some disturbing statistics.
A May 2010 by the General Accountability Office, which looked at the issue of diversity in the financial services industry, found that “overall diversity at the management level in the financial services industry did not change substantially from 1993 through 2008. Relying on data compiled by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the GAO reported that minorities held just 10 percent of “senior-level” management positions at financial services firms.
In 2008, the EEOC data revealed that white males held 64 percent of all senior jobs, with African Americans holding 2.8 percent, Hispanics some 3 percent of all senior jobs and Asians holding 3.5 percent of top level jobs.