Images from theTechWomen100 Awards, Sophie Neary

On 06 December, WeAreTechWomen hosted the 2022 TechWomen100 Awards Ceremony, where our keynote speaker, Sophie Neary, delivered an empowering speech calling for our winners to shout about their achievements.

Sophie Neary

Sophie Neary is Group Director for META UK & Ireland. Sophie joined META from Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA), where she was a member of the executive committee for Boots. A feminist since 1971, Sophie is a passionate champion of women’s health in the workplace and has recently launched a series aiming to break down taboos and stereotypes called Courage Is Contagious. As a woman who is single and childfree from choice – Sophie regularly speaks about embracing a life outside of the traditional expectations of society and helping to build a future where everyone has the greatest freedom of all – the choice to lead a life of their own choosing.

As a woman who has worked in tech since 1993, Sophie bares all the scars of how hard it is to be a successful woman in technology.

During her speech, Sophie called on our winners to share their achievements:

Own your prize, take pride in your achievements, hold your heads up high, and celebrate and share your sucess. Blast it on LinkedIn, because it doesn’t just matter for you, it matters because we must keep celebrating women’s achievements, so that we are all fairly recognised for the contributions that we make. You cannot be what you cannot see, and each of us must play our part in helping to make the world fairer, to ensure that it won’t take 100 years, that’s five generations, for us to get to equal pay.

Throughout her keynote, Sophie emphasises that, whether we like it or not, it is still too hard for women to do well in this world.

When i was a little girl my dad used to say to me “you can do anything you want to Sophie, as long as you understand it’s harder for girls. You’ll have to be twice as good, work twice as hard to be seen the same”, and when i complained “that’s just so unfair” he said the inconvenient truth: “life is unfair Sophie, it’s harder for girls.”

Sophie’s speech well and truly wowed our audience. As she delivered her closing remarks, Sophie received a standing ovation from our 430+ guests where an air of determination and excitement filled the room.

A key line stood out in the speech and perfectly emcompassed all that we stand for:

“It’s not who we are that matters, but what we do that counts”

Watch Sophie’s full keynote below.