NEW YORK — Italian-owned pasta maker Barilla Group is set to be recognized in March by nonprofit organization Catalyst for its initiatives that have accelerated progress for women and increased inclusion for all within its organizations around the world.

For more than 30 years Catalyst has bestowed the Catalyst Awards to recognize exceptional initiatives that companies have taken to accelerate and advance women into their leadership. On March 17-18, Barilla will be recognized with the premiere 2021 Catalyst Award.

“We are honored to be recognized by Catalyst for our global efforts at Barilla to advance gender equality in the workplace, enhanced by our achievement of gender pay equality around the Barilla world,” said Claudio Colzani, chief executive officer of the Barilla Group. “This award is a reflection of Barilla’s effort to promote a culture of diversity and inclusion in our employees, partners and the communities in which we eat, live and work. Understanding that we still have more work to do, we will continue with resilience on this path to create an even more inclusive company for all.”

Barilla said it is being recognized for its turnaround to become a model of inclusion for its LGBTQ+ employees and all underrepresented groups working for the family-owned company.

Over the past seven years Barilla has significantly increased the level of responsibility among its female employees. In 2020, the number of women within Barilla who reported directly to the CEO totaled 28%, up from only 8% in 2013. Meanwhile, the number of women within Barilla who reported to the Global Leadership Team was 36% in 2020, up from 23% in 2014. The number of women who reported directly to senior leaders totaled 47% in 2020, up from 40% in 2014, while all women in positions globally increased to 38% in 2020, up from 33% in 2014.

Additionally, Barilla said it achieved gender pay equality in 2020 globally for all employees, which is aligned with the company’s goal of “Equal pay for equal work.”

 “We applaud Barilla and RBC for their initiatives that have proactively cultivated inclusive cultures for women and everyone within their organizations,” said Lorraine Hariton, president and CEO, Catalyst. “Their singular commitment to increasing the representation of women in their leadership ranks — and holding themselves accountable to develop and empower talent in the face of challenges — demonstrates that progress won’t pause.”