The Women 1st campaign will seek to tackle the gender imbalance in a sector where 59% of the workforce is female, but only 6% of directors and 26% of senior managers are women.
Speaking at the launch of the campaign, Cherie Blair said it was time to "make sure that women do finally break through the glass ceiling in this industry".
She said: "Promotion of women to their rightful place is not positive discrimination, but a sensible choice. To utilise the skills women possess and increase diversity in the workforce is a win-win situation for everybody."
The campaign has pledged to ensure that by 2015 there will be at least one female candidate for every board position available, and gender parity will be created in the top two tiers of organisations in the sector by 2020.
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