The Women in Finance Awards aims to be the finance industry’s largest diversity initiative to break down the barriers that currently exist for women within the finance sector.
There are a number of issues that women in the finance sector face, such as biased managers, a lack of flexibility or empathy and a lack of relatable role models. These are all issues that must be dealt with in order for women to stand a chance of being perceived as equal to their male counterparts.
The awards celebrate the high-achievers and advocates for women within the industry. This includes identifying individuals who are in middle and senior management that are advocates for women in finance. They encourage women in the early stages of their career to break through barriers and grow within the sector, in order to have a successful career, driving results for themselves and business. The event also aims to raise awareness of the sector’s diversity problems, in addition to celebrating inclusion, leadership and excellence within the finance sector.
The awards also celebrate the organisations who are building and supporting a community of female role models within a male-dominated sector. This helps to support other women who are in the earlier stages of their career, with the aim of tackling under-representation of females in senior levels in finance, the lack of role models and mentors, the gender pay gap, hiring and promotion biases.
Here is a list of our members and their employees who have been shortlisted for the Women in Finance Awards 2017:
Woman of the Year
Winner: Emily Cox, Director of Public Affairs – Virgin Money
For the flagship awards category of the night, the judges chose Emily Cox after a spirited debate. Emily stood out as a game changer for all of her work on the Gadhia Report, and furthering the momentum of the Women in Finance Charter. Emily received multiple nominations from her colleagues at Virgin Money and committee member from Founders4Schools, a non-profit organisation that connects school students with inspiring entrepreneurs, placing diversity first.
The headline award of the event that recognises an inspiring leader who has challenged, influenced or revolutionised the culture of the business and financial services sector. Winners will have demonstrated a positive impact in order to bridge the gender pay gap in finance, through various initiatives.
Advocate of the Year
WINNER: Andrew Bester, CEO – Commercial Banking – Lloyds Banking Group
The judges were impressed with Andrew Bester’s dedication towards diversity and inclusion at all levels of the bank. Under his leadership, Lloyds Bank is now on track to reach its 2020 commitment of 40 per cent of women in senior roles.
This award is given to either a company or an individual that has gone out of their way to support the promotion of women within the sector in the last 18 months. For example, they may have established or developed an initiative or training scheme in order to help the business reach its gender goals.
Fund Manager of the Year
Lucy Macdonald, CIO Global Equities – Allianz Global Investors
It has been found that only 3% of the UK fund managers are female. This shows that there is a significant divide within the industry and this award aims to recognise those who have greatly impacted and supported diversity within finance. The award is given to someone who has shown exceptional performance in this issue, compared to their peers, over a prolonged period of time.
Banker of the Year
Angela Chau, Relationship Director – Santander Corporate & Commercial
Tracie Pearce, Head of Mortgages – HSBC Bank plc
This award recognises and celebrates inspirational and influential women in banking who have overseen strong financial performance in the organisation, within the last year and have successfully guided the bank with new business practices, expansion into new markets, or innovative new products/services.
Accountancy Leader of the Year
Stella Amiss, International Tax Partner – PwC
This award is given to accountants that have met or exceeded challenging objectives to ensure the highest quality of provision of accountancy and related services. The winner will have contributed to financial growth in the last year and will have demonstrated exceptional management and leadership.
Insurance Leader of the Year
Haley Golden, UK Diversity, Inclusion & Wellbeing Manager – Zurich Insurance Company
Pauline Miller, Head of Diversity and Inclusion – Lloyd’s
Highly Commended: Stephanie Smith, COO - Allianz
The judges highly commend Stephanie Smith from Allianz for her commitments to wider diversity and using her senior role to inspire and push other women forward.
This award is given to the strongest senior-level contender in the insurance industry who has an excellent record of attracting and managing clients and bringing the business successful deals. The award is also open to women in senior diversity-specific roles; the winner will also demonstrate exceptional leadership.
Employer of the Year
Highly Commended: Lloyds Banking Group
The judges highly commend Lloyds Banking Group in this category for being well-recognised for being gender diverse, and for having made a measurable impact on the banking industry.
This award recognises companies that proactively cultivate a diverse workforce in order to achieve a greater gender balance at all levels of the organisation. The winner will demonstrate diversity amongst its senior employees, have comprehensive maternity/paternity benefits, a track record of promoting diversity and extensive diversity-supportive policies within their recruitment and operations.
Disruptor of the Year
The Clear Company
This award celebrates the companies that have reinvigorated gender diversity in the financial services industry by breaking down barriers, exploring new markets, creating innovative new products or services, or have established a new effective way of working.
If you are interested in a career with any of our members that are mentioned above, please click on their names to find out more about them and to be directed to their current vacancies.
Vercida works with over one hundred clients who are committed to creating an inclusive work environment. If you are an employer and interested in working with Vercida to promote your diversity and inclusion initiatives and attract the best candidates, please call 02037405973 or email [email protected] for more information.
We are also officially recommended by Disability Confident as a step on achieving Employer status, please click here for more information.