Angela Cooke - PwC

Angela Cooke | PwC

Angela Cooke is an experienced HR professional with specialist expertise in diversity, inclusion and employee wellbeing at PwC. She is a qualified business psychologist having gained a Master’s degree in Occupational Psychology and CIPD qualifications.

As part of her role as a diversity specialist, she is a trusted business advisor who works collaboratively with senior business leaders to help them create inclusive and diverse working environments. She has done this through a number of key initiatives:

She leads PwC’s long term behaviour change campaign, ‘Open Mind’, which focuses on unconscious bias. This campaign has transformed the attitudes and behaviours of partners and staff in PwC. It has also positioned PwC as thought leaders externally in the diversity space and Angela has developed a commercial proposition to sell aspects of the campaign to clients and works with them on their diversity issues. This has represented a significant and unexpected return on investment of £150k for the firm.

See here for details on the campaign

Angela leads the firm’s approach to diverse recruitment, ensuring that it is attracting from as wide a talent pool as possible. For example, she has introduced the innovative new initiative, ‘Back to Business’, a practical and positive way to help senior women return to their careers after a long break. The programme is helping the firm redress its gender balance and achieve its diversity targets.

She presents to students and potential applicants on the importance of diversity. Her presentations have helped attract more women to the firm - feedback received from one participant who attended a recruitment event at which she spoke: ‘I enjoyed the diversity and open minded presentation the most’.

As a result of the leading work she has been involved in Angela is frequently called upon by other organisations to share best practice.

Tamara Leigh Rising Star 2015

Tamara Leigh | IRIN

Tamara Leigh is a communications and advocacy consultant, who works with international aid agencies and the media to raise awareness on issues of humanitarian concern.

After graduating with a degree in Politics and Philosophy, Tamara moved to Nairobi in Kenya to work for the United Nations. Since then, she has worked with the International Red Cross in East Africa and South Sudan, with the International Rescue Committee in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

She is currently based in London, working for the humanitarian news service, IRIN, supporting its transition from the UN into an independent media agency that delivers unique, authoritative and independent reporting from the frontlines of crises. She has recently published work on the Democratic Republic of Congo and the global migration crisis.


Polina Zabelina | BP

Polina ZabelinaPolina Zabelina is a chartered Corrosion Engineer in BP Upstream Engineering Centre Team. In her current role she supports BP Projects and Operations by providing corrosion and erosion expertise.

During her 3+years at BP she developed and delivered Erosion training to more than 100 engineers in various BP regions and improved company’s erosion management strategy (estimated value for BP >$500M/year) and was recognised with a Tallow Chandlers Award (2014) for this work.

Prior to BP Polina was a Corrosion Engineer for Sakhalin-1 project (Exxon Neftegas Limited) where she managed Corrosion Monitoring and Chemical Injection program for the whole project.

Polina is from Siberian city Omsk, where she graduated as a Chemical Engineer in 2008. She is a committee member of Institute of Corrosion, member of NACE and PinkPetro Community board member. Polina is also a STEM ambassador and enjoys encouraging students to study engineering.


Vicki Ghiotti | Sodexo

Photo©John Cassidy The Headshot Guy® 401009Vicki joined Sodexo in 1994 following various PA roles within the pharmaceutical, IT and medical industries.

Vicki left Sodexo in 1999 to become self-employed and successfully ran a secretarial business from home providing support to local businesses and individuals.

Vicki returned to Sodexo in 2001 as PA to the Business Development Manager, Justice Services.

During her time with Sodexo, Vicki has also worked as a Project Coordinator within the Business Development Team assisting in the production of bid documentation for new custodial business. In 2009, Vicki travelled to South Africa where she worked with a team in Johannesburg producing bid submissions for four new build prison projects.

Vicki is a member of the Leadership Team for Women Work (Sodexo’s gender employee network) and assists in all activities including scheduling monthly team meetings, minute-taking, communicating with the network membership and promoting events. The main event in the Women Work calendar is the Annual Conference, and Vicki is heavily involved in the organisation of this. She also sits on the Events Sub-Committee which arranges and schedules regular events for the network’s members.

Vicki is currently PA to the Managing Director and Deputy Managing Director of Sodexo Justice Services. However, from 1 September Vicki will move into a new role as PA to the CEO, Justice Worldwide.

In her spare time, Vicki enjoys spending time with her young son. She also volunteers at events to increase awareness and raise much needed funds for Iain Rennie Hospice at Home.

emily-Thorpe-Rising Star 2015

Emily Thorpe ǀ Happy Working Mum

© Pete Jones

Emily, is an author, coach and inspirational speaker, who is passionate about transforming the lives of career or business mums, helping them go from tired, stressed, overwhelmed and feeling guilty to relaxed, calm, balanced and in control.

Author of the book “The Working Mums 5-step Solution To Having It All”, Emily also offers talks, transformational workshops and programmes, which all help women to unlock the secrets to successfully combining professional success with being the mum they truly want to be. Ditching the plate spinning, juggling and guilt and instead enjoying quality time with their children and becoming a 'memory maker'.

As a devoted Mother to two boys, and a highly successful air-traffic controller working in a high-pressure environment, whilst also running her own successful coaching business, Emily knows exactly what it takes to “have it all”, helping women to enjoy the journey and those precious family years with a sense of balance, ease, serenity and fun!

Liv Cooke

Liv Cooke ǀ Liv Cooke Freestyle

I am the only professional female football freestyler in the UK, at 16 years old I can happily say I've achieved all of this myself from the countless nights staying up late finishing my website or writing emails and the cold winter days out there training in the rain.

I aim to promote females in sport and aid the movement for equality via the product of my hard work.






Caroline Andrews | Giles Wilson

Caroline AndrewsI am extremely flattered to have been nominated for this award but this also reflects the team ethic that we produce at the firm. I started working in law because I wanted to help families get through their most difficult moments, and my developing practise of fertility law was a natural result of that.

Through my work for the charity Verity, I have come into contact with tens of thousands of women who have personal health issues which make starting a family quite a lot more complicated than it should be. The law in this area is rapidly developing, and so through my firm I am privileged to have been able to help families understand these issues in my region. I started initially as a paralegal, and over the past 8 years I have developed to a Senior Associate with responsibilities for overseeing many younger members of staff. I am grateful for the role I have in training these , as I am able to demonstrate to them how powerful good legal representation can be in protecting and mending families.

This year I have had a paralegal specifically working on my case load and it has been fantastic in watching how with care and attention from myself as her trainer, she has developed her legal understanding of family law cases; as well as the changes in her own confidence. Both this firm and the charity I volunteer for place an emphasis on self awareness of matters to then be able to access the right professional support, and I engage in this through our social media outlets.

Becky Rogers Rising Stars 2015

Becky Rogers | C & C Search

Growing up as one of three girls it is fair to say that I am the classic middle child! Overly Loud and regularly saying the wrong thing at the wrong time I would happily say I am the child that has always caused my parents the most problems. However my outgoing nature has always led me to want to be the best and to never settle for anything less and I have been incredibly lucky to work for some hugely influential and empowering woman.

Despite not being an overachiever on the academic front and struggling with dyslexia I have always felt that a competitive and committed attitude was all I needed to succeed in the world of business.

Currently working for an all female start up recruitment agency I am hugely proud of everything we have achieved and am privileged to have been recognised for this award.

Stephanie Niven - Tesco Pension Investment

Stephanie Niven | Tesco Pension Investment (TPI)

Stephanie joined TPI in December 2012 as an Equity Portfolio Manager on the global equity team with responsibility for stock selection in the materials, energy and healthcare sectors. Together with her team she has established a robust and effective investment process, driving top quintile performance of the fund over the past two and a half years, with direct oversight of £3.4bn of assets and indirect responsibility over a further £3bn.

Stephanie was previously at hedge fund boutique Javelin Capital LLP, where she was a Partner and Portfolio Manager with responsibility for the fundamental investment strategy of the portfolio. She joined Javelin Capital with former colleagues of Goldman Sachs Asset Management, where she worked for five years on the Global Active Equity team.

Stephanie graduated from Merton College, Oxford University with a Double First in History, coming in the top ten of her year. Stephanie is a CFA charterholder, receiving the designation in 2010.

Outside of work, Stephanie is a keen athlete, having been selected to represent Great Britain at the ITU World Long Distance Triathlon Championships in Belfort, France. She has also completed four ironman triathlons, most recently achieving a podium position in Langkawi, Malaysia in September 2014.

Sue stoner

Sue Stoner ǀ PwC UK

I am a passionate and busy PA working at PwC where I work for 3 partners and 3 directors. I have been here since 1988 and love working here because it is a great place to work - lots of opportunities, and a bunch of very talented people. Each of the partners and directors I work for require different levels of my time - the busiest being the main partner I look after and he says I am an essential part of his life - his job takes him to some of the most challenge places around the world (Congo, Pakistan, Kenya, Kosovo, etc) and so this involves a lot of travel, including obtaining visas - often at short notice which results in major diary management. I also help him to do what he loves at PwC, he runs our international aid consulting business but he's also hugely passionate about strength based leadership, diversity and strength based development, so I help him make sure he gets to deliver his day job and keep him organised to do more of what he loves. One of his events are called Genius Power Dreams workshops - which he created about 4 years ago and these workshops are run every other month and I do all the administration for it which involves diary management, booking rooms and registration - we currently have around 500 people on our mailing list for these events - of which between 20 and 60 people attend each session. I also help him keep healthy by carefully scheduling hospital appointments and check-ups - he had heart failure last year and I have helped keep him going by scheduling hospital around his passions at work.

Over the last 5 years I've become increasingly involved in the PwC International Development business, not only do I support the main Partner in this business but I also get involved in helping the entire team when it comes to events and international travel (including flights and visas), this can be very complicated and often requires last minute country evacuations and flight changes due to the changing security situations in many of the countries that the team operates in. Based on this work I've now been asked to take on another Partner, the new leader for our UK/Africa Alliance, his schedule will no doubt be a nightmare and will require complicated travel in and out of African countries, my knowledge and experience with the International Development team makes me perfect for the role with him.

Finally, my main Partner is also a trustee for 2 charities, Diversity Role Models and Action Breaks Silence. I've been supporting him in getting board meetings scheduled and helping the charities to get their marketing information refreshed. I've been able to use the full capability of PwC's design team and facilities team to make sure we are supporting these charities as much as possible. For ABS, we arranged some Self Defence Training for PwC staff, to which the team from ABS came along to do for us – we had over 30 attendees attend this with some fantastic feedback. He is also heavily involved in working with Stonewall and also National Diversity Awards.

I have a vast knowledge about the firm and am often used as the point of contact for new joiners, or employees from our regional offices if they need help in any way. I am known as the "go-to" person!! Last year I was extremely proud to have won the London PA of the Year Award for the Above & Beyond Category - beating 65 other nominees.

Outside of work, I commute to Kent by coach and have been doing this for the last 20 years, I became a ticket collector on the coach about 18 years ago, and then about 6 years ago I was asked if would become the supervisor - so I currently manage around 25 ticket collectors, ensuring that all our coaches have cover, arranging cover and also meeting/interview/train new collectors - and all whilst commuting to work!! We also keep chickens at home and so I am known for selling my eggs in the office!!