In-house leaders for California-based companies should be preparing for new state legislation that requires boards of directors to include members of “underrepresented communities” and imposes hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines for violations of the diversity mandate.  

The bill, AB 979, will become law if Gov. Gavin Newsom signs it by the end of September. It resembles the somewhat controversial 2018 state legislation requiring boards to include at least one female director.