Nistler CoBPA Faculty Research

Celebrate the impact of our research.

Dr. Cullen Goenner article published in the January 2023 issue of Business & Society

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Cullen Goenner, Professor in the Department of Economics & Finance for his article published in the January 2023 issue of Business & Society.

Cullen Goenner

Title: Majority-Minority Boards of Directors and Decision Making: The Effects of Homophily on Lending Decisions

Journal: Business & Society (JQL Level 4)

Author: Cullen Goenner

Abstract: In this study, I examine the role racial minorities in the boardroom can play in reducing social injustice by promoting more equal access to mortgage credit to minority households. I develop a simple theoretical model that posits directors who are racial minorities provide the credit unions they govern with a perspective that shapes lenders’ trust of minority applicants. This trust is shaped by homophily and the tendency of individuals to prefer interactions with similar individuals. Using mortgage loan data from a cross-section of credit unions in the United States from 185,446 applications, I find that credit unions where the majority of board members are minorities are less likely to reject a similarly qualified minority applicant than their counterparts. Governance by minority directors significantly reduces the effects of discrimination faced by minority applicants. The board’s effect is strongest in minority neighborhoods and where the homophily is stronger between directors and applicants