Co-leading the boutique recruiting firm HirePerfect, J. Melissa Cooper is a graduate of New York University. J. Melissa Cooper serves in a consulting role for the Women Presidents’ Organization (WPO), joining roundtables to advise women executives on search and hiring issues from an HR standpoint.
A nonprofit membership organization, WPO consists of women presidents of multimillion-dollar companies. The purpose of the organization is to advance women entrepreneurs and improve conditions and opportunities for female executives.
The number of women in executive leadership positions has grown in the last few years, according to data released by the U.S. Census Bureau. Between 2007 and 2012, women-owned businesses grew by more than a quarter to 27.5 percent, or 9.9 million businesses. Together, women-led businesses generated more than $1.5 trillion in receipts, as of 2012.
The majority of women-owned firms are sole proprietorships; only about 10 percent employ additional people. Still, women-owned firms with employees added 1.5 million jobs between 2007 and 2012.