2018 Finalists

A massive congratulations to all those who were nominated, all the finalists, and of course our fabulous winners – we’re proud to announce the following list.

Building Wales

The number of women studying and working in science, construction, technology and engineering remains stubbornly low despite the vast and rewarding career opportunities within these sectors. This award will celebrate those women who are building Wales through advancing in their own career journey and making a real difference to their own sectors in Wales. Our winner will be encouraging other women into these disciplines and supporting women to progress on their career path.

Winner: Delyth Prys – Pennaeth yr Uned Technolegau Iaith, Canolfan Bedwyr – Prifysgol Bangor

Dr Yueng-Djern Lenn – Lecturer – Bangor University

Emily Bristow – Head of Intelligent Automation – CGI

Jessica Leigh Jones – Engineer – Sony

Business (Women’s category)

Fewer women start businesses than men and the average income of a self-employed woman is currently around £10,000. This award celebrates those women who have bucked the trend and set up successful businesses with real growth potential. The winning nomination will demonstrate success in both building a business and promoting or supporting other women in business in Wales.

Winner: Sarah John – Business Owner/Director – Boss Brewing Company

Betina Skovbro – Business Owner – The Danish Bakery Ltd

Gemma Hallett – Founder – miFuture

Nicola Lewis – Managing Director – EasyBooks Wales Ltd

Community Activist

There are many examples of women who have contributed hugely to our communities – particularly at times of crisis or challenge. The purpose of this award is to bring to our attention those women who have done just this but have gone unrecognised. The winner will be an unsung hero – someone who tends to hide from the limelight but whose community recognise their contribution and hold them up as a role model for other women and girls across Wales.

Winner and Champion: Deborah Shaffer – CEO Fair Treatment for the Women of Wales – FTWW – Volunteer

Dr Mhairi McVicar – Senior Lecturer – Welsh School of Architecture, Cardiff University

Haseena Ali – Student – St Julian’s School

Ms Iolanda Banu Viegas – Chairperson CLPW (Portuguese Community/North Wales Black History Network) – Race Council Cymru North Wales


The creative sector is increasingly important to not only the Welsh culture but the Welsh economy. This award will be given to a woman who personifies the best of the sector; pushing the boundaries through creativity and putting Wales on the map. They use their position and skills to support and encourage other women to be represented across all creative platforms.

Winner: Kaite O’Reilly – Playwrite, dramaturge, writer, tutor, disability rights activist, mentor, lecturer & Award winning blogger

Carys Owens – Managing Director – Lens 360 Ltd

Julia Harris and Sarah Valentin – Co founders – The Sustainable Studio

Mathilde Lopez – Theatre Director – August 012

Diversity Champion (Employer Award)

Smart organisations – whether in the third, public or private sector – recognise that they achieve more by making the most of women’s skills and abilities throughout the organisation. This award celebrates an organisation that has taken a proactive approach to close the gender divide in the workplace. They will have run a successful initiative to attract, retain and progress women within the organisation and be able to evidence the impact their improvements have had on both individual employees and the organisation as a whole.

Winner: HSBC

Legal & General

Principality Building Society

Swansea University

FairPlay Employer (Employer Award)

Workplaces are changing. Forward thinking organisations are changing the way they work by using new innovative practices, which allows women to grow and thrive. By working differently, they are reaping the rewards from improved productivity, happy staff and are an employer of choice for women. Our FairPlay© Employer award will celebrate organisations that embrace modern working practices to ensure that they harness the skills of all their staff. The winner will be able to evidence improved staff engagement, productivity and excellent customer satisfaction. ‘Disruptive’ businesses use technology, results based/flexible working patterns and innovative work environments to better fulfil the needs of the organisation.

Winner: DVLA

Dwr Cymru Welsh Water

The Number Hub

United Welsh


No matter which sector you look at, women are under-represented in leadership positions. This award celebrates women who have broken the mould and are leading by example. The winner will be someone who has not only been successful in her own right but has used the opportunities provided by the position she has reached to support and mentor other women in their career journeys.

Winner: Professor Bela Arora – Professor & Course Leader – University of South Wales & Vice Chair – British America Project

Dr Alys Einion – Author & Associate Professor of Midwifery – Swansea University

Hayley Pells – Company Secretary – Avia Sports Cars Ltd

Jill Callan – Head of the Contact Centre – DVLA

Kay Martin – Principal – Cardiff and Vale College


Sometimes events in life prevent us from making the most of our school experience and it’s not until later on that we find that we’re brighter than we think we are! This award celebrates those women who have re-entered learning and/or education and made the most of it – not only excelling themselves but supporting and encouraging other women to make the most of their potential too.

Winner: Nicole Kinnaird – Student & Equality & Diversity Officer – Cardiff Metropolitan University

Debbie Richards – Child Care Solicitor – Hutchinson Thomas

Kirsty Jones – Sexual Exploitation Advocacy Support worker – South East Wales Regional Equality Council (SEWREC)

Mehnaz Khan – Student – Cardiff Metropolitan University

Rising Star

Sometimes you need to have a long career under your belt to be recognised – not for this award! We want to celebrate the young women coming through in different roles and sectors who show great promise for the future. The winner of this award will be a woman who has entered the workplace in the last 5 years, has already achieved success and who has demonstrated real potential.

Winner: Charlotte Bailey – Self-employed education consultant, author & public speaker

Heulwen Davies – Founder & blogger – Mam Cymru

Katie Owen – Hear to Help Co-ordinator – Action on Hearing Loss Cymru

Phoebe Howells-Darcy – Student – Coleg Gwent Ebbw Vale

Rural Wales

Wales is a predominantly rural country and women living and working in rural areas face particular barriers to achieving their goals. This award will celebrate a woman who has had a significant impact on the local economy, their community or the natural environment in Wales’ most rural areas. They will have shown a determination to make life better for their locality and be a role model for other women to do the same.

Winner: Rhian Parry – Managing Director – Worksafe Ltd

Cath Peasley – Former Director – Dulas Ltd

Catherine Butler – Butcher and Slaughter woman – Hugh Phillips Gower Butcher

Dr Marian Gwyn – Independent Heritage Consultant – Self-Employed


The profile of women’s sport is becoming more and more prevalent but still has a way to go to have the same profile as men’s sport. This award recognises the contribution women make to sport in Wales. This could be as an athlete, coach or in another role in which they have raised the visibility or increased the impact of women’s sport in Wales. The winner of this award will be a woman who is a game changer; a true inspiration for other women to participate and achieve in sport or who has supported others to achieve in their sports careers.

Winner: Mica Moore – Dual Athlete

Dr Kelly Morgan – Research Fellow – Cardiff University

Erika Fitzgibbon – Retired Volunteer Chair/Leader – Women Running Penarth

Kelly Stokes – Team Captain – Riot City Ravens